Good Deal or Not? “dramatic 30 ft ceilings” edition (reader request)


This house is located at 1355 Oak Street, NW:


The listing says:

“High-end 2013 renovation, dramatic 30 ft ceilings. Main level perfect for entertaining: sep dining, living & gourmet kit w/ island, Jenn-Air appliances, waterfall granite & wine fridge. Spacious 6bedrooms & 4.5 baths. Top floor Master ste is a retreat: private deck, lounge area, wet bar, lux bath: designer tiles, soak tub, double sinks and large walk-in shower. Legal bsmt rental & 2car pkg. Must SEE”

You can see a virtual tour here.

This 6 bed/4.5 bath is going for $1,250,000.

42 Comment

  • why do all houses on GDoN have listello in the shower? they all look cheap and dated.

    • Care to define/explain “listello” for those of us who aren’t familiar with the term?

      • An architectural fillet, a tile border or listel. Its the strip of tile that separate the two sections (top and bottom) of a tiled wall.

  • It’ll be a real you-know-what to “update” when all of those already almost outdated style choices go officially out of style in a few years.

  • 30 foot ceiling cutout is a huge waste of space. I’d rather have an actual room on the 3rd floor in that spot. I currently have 18′ foot ceiling in my living room and even that seems like too much (and yes, I love the light the floods into my place). This exposes all of your business to your neighbors. Eh.
    Otherwise, I like the place. Nice fixtures, though that busy backsplash needs to go.

  • I think this actually a great deal once you back out the 2 bedroom rental income from the mortgage, assuming its a legal rental.

  • Way different layout than i was expecting

    whileit probably doesnt maxamize space it does look nice, a lot different from what you see in most row homes

    that busy extended backsplash in the kitchen is awful though

  • I want to know who the developer thought was going to live there. Someone with no kids and no plans to have kids doesn’t need four bedrooms, and can get way higher-end finishes (instead of faux high end) elsewhere for their $1.25M. Someone WITH kids would never consider a house with those death-trap stairs. I have never seen a less child-friendly space. Nor, probably, would parents consider that neighborhood. I mean, I live in CH and love it, but it only works because my kids lucked into an awesome charter. If I had been thinking about schools when I was house hunting, I wouldn’t have bought in CH.
    I just can’t imagine who the buyer for that house would be. It’s pretty to look at, though. Once you get past the haunted-house color scheme on the exterior.

    • Some of us without kids still like to have, or need, more than one bedroom. Even four. It’s up to each buyer to determine what s/he “needs.” You never know the individual circumstances/proclivities.

      • Agreed, i have a single aunt who lives in a 5 bedroom and roughly 4,000 sq foot home alone in Crestwood. The space comes in handy during the holidays, and she enjoys the space.

        also, i’m sure someone who is buying a home for over a $mil is factoring in private school.

      • Ok, but for that money, you’re going to get your extraneous rooms in a better (cleaner, safer) part. I can see buying more house than you need if it’s some kind of bargain. I can see buying more house than you need if the neighborhood is perfect for you. But if you like all that ultra-mod Architectural Digest stuff, and you have that kind of money to spend, a flipped rowhouse in CH is not what you’re looking for.
        That’s what I mean when I say “I wonder who the developer thought was going to live there.” I can imagine any one element fitting… but all these things? Contradictory. As if the contractor picked up the wrong set of plans, and accidentally did the Dupont reno on the CH house.

        • but i don’t think you can get a house this size, and caliber anywhere “safer or cleaner”. this in Dupont, Logan, U Street would be double.

    • It does seem a bit too high for the hood, but if you figure a 2 br will bring it, say at least $2k/month rent, and then rent out the main house as an awesome group house for young professionals at at least $1200/month each… Not sure what the mortgage would be may, but if you could price it right to cover your mortgage, this could be a great group house… But yeah, it does look a bit like a funeral parlour from the outside at the moment…

    • I grew up in a contemporary house with similar “death-trap stairs.” Still here (for better or worse). FYI, awesome space to sit at, sit with your legs swinging down between the stairs while using one as a “desk.”

    • Childless couple, well-paid, either or both of whom work extensively from home, and who like to entertain? Bedrooms don’t always have to be for sleeping. So it’s not really that hard to imagine the kind of buyers they are marketing to … it’s a niche market, but not a non-existent one. I really question whether that part of CH is really 1.25M territory, but I bet this sells at close to ask. Other comments notwithstanding, it’s a nice reno, has some interesting (if not always practical) design features, and can produce probably $2000/mo in rental income offset against a likely $5500/mo mortgage outlay, with some significant tax advantages that will bring the real cost of ownership down even below that net 3500/mo cost. If you’ve got the down payment, that is.

    • I missed the memo stating that only people with children buy houses…

  • Not a fan, and at this price/location, I doubt it goes for asking.

  • my bf lived a few houses down from this place. its really pretty. don’t know about some of the tile choices, but in general, the house looks great. not your typical flip.

  • not sure why someone would pay 1.2 mil for this neighborhood. You are going to own the most expensive house in the area for a long long time.

    • Not that long. There’s a house on Meridian and Holmead that was split into two and sold for more than this place, if taken together. There is also a renovation going on at Holmead and Otis that will amount to more money. If measuring in price per square feet, this is actually not far off the mark. I just think it’s a bit odd to do this to a beautiful Wardman row house, and wouldn’t want this to happen to the rest of the neighborhood.

    • My reaction as well. This is an example of being “over-improved” in a transitional neighborhood.

  • That’s a lot of busy, ugly tile…and it may just be the photos, but the staircase seems to take up a disproportionate amount of the interior space. And are the floors all dusty, or is that just the way the wood is supposed to look? I do like the tub in the master bathroom, though. I appreciate the modern style they were going for, but overall the execution seems a little lacking.

  • I haven’t looked at the interior photos yet, but the outside looks positively funereal. What did they do to the windows/screens to make them look black?? The houses on either side have normal-looking windows/screens.

  • I live right down the street from this place at Holmead/Oak and hope this sells for asking but I can’t imagine spending 1.25M to live there. I bought 11 years ago and welcome all the changes but to me its still the ‘hood. Cohi is replete with unseemly characters, crime is rapant, trash is everywhere. More needs to be done to make everyone feel safe.

    I was walking down Holmead yesterday and a bum asked me for some change, I said I had nothing for him, then I was called a “White Bread Bitch”….I mean c’mon. Get this crap off the streets. How can million dollar homes be clustered around the garbage.

  • it’s a nice layout, but not exactly what one expects when he hears “30 foot ceilings”.

  • Filled with renovation cliches (the tile, the fancy shower, stainless appliances). Will look like kitsch in no time. At this price, there shouldn’t be a low ceiling, claustrophobic LR and a lot of expensive cliches.

    • Have you been inside? “Claustrophobic” is the last word you’d pick. I’m not exactly a fan, but I will say that it is incredibly spacious and light throughout.
      (I got no beef with the “renovation cliches” characterization.)

  • Uhm…. where’s the TV?

  • I toured this a couple of weeks ago in an open house. It is nice for a specific taste I suppose – it’s really all about the stairs and open levels – very art gallery feel, not so much home feel. And the tile is terribly busy, plus you need to be a rocket scientist to figure out the 18 faucet/button shower controls! The basement apt. is gorgeous and large. I agree it is the classic reverse of the advice to buy the worst house in the best neighborhood. And the outside is oppressively ugly – I think I would feel depressed just walking up to the front door every day.

  • I did a walk through of this house since I live around the corner… I can honestly say it’s amazing and beautifully done. The only (and I mean only) downside is it’s complete lack of yard.

    1.25 is definitely high for the neighborhood but the basement unit is legal, tastefully done and will rent for a solid 2000 a month.

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