GDoN? “large balcony, murphy bed” edition

DC8568649 - spacious living room with a wall of glass

This unit is located at 800 4th Street, Southwest. The listing says:

“Metro! Dining! Grocery! Wonderful studio at pet friendly Potomac Place Towers. Beautiful new wood floors, large balcony, murphy bed, garage parking in SW/Waterfront near the new WHARF development! Tons of closet space, large kitchen w/pantry & breakfast bar. Condo fee includes ALL utilities! Gym, pool, lounge and 24 hr. desk. Walk everywhere – this one is a gem!”

You can see more photos here.

This studio is going for $284,000 ($315 monthly fee.)

43 Comment

  • pcat

    No comment on the apartment, but does anyone know where I can buy a Murphy bed or have one made? I’d like to replace the queen bed I have in my guest room with a Murphy bed.

    • hardwood artisans sells them. not cheap, but really nicely made.

      • Thanks. Been wondering this as well, as it would be a good option for my smallest bedroom.

      • The Hardwood Artisans murphy beds are very nice (and beyond my price range). I’ve looked at DIY and it seems if you are somewhat handy you can build your own (buying a kit that has the hardware).
        Until I have the time and handier-than-me helper, I use a futon sofa in the guest room.

        • Futons are (IMO) where it’s at for guest-bedroom accommodations. I remember house-hunting and seeing a place that had a Murphy bed in the guest bedroom. Granted, it saves on floor space… but the whole setup (at least for this particular Murphy bed) was hulking and made the room look small as a result.

          • I’ve seen some murphy beds that are horizontal rather than vertical which I think is visually more appealing, especially in a small bedroom.

          • MPinDC — I didn’t know such a thing existed. Yeah, that sounds like it could decrease the hulking-ness factor.

    • Eco-nize installed one for me. it was a combination murphy bed/closet and totally transformed the third bedroom in my house, and the price was right. only a twin but my girlfriend and I slept on it for a couple of months while we were reno-ing the second and master bedrooms and we had no issues!

    • I had a lot of trouble finding a murphy bed that I liked for our guest room/ office. They were all so bulky and chunky, except for a few outrageously expensive Italian ones. I ended up designing and building it myself and it is much more sleek and modern (and still comfortable).

  • Nearly 300K for a studio with a murphy bed? No thank you. Perhaps i’m in the minority of folks who don’t understand why you’d pay that kind of money to live like a college student.

  • maxwell smart

    So let’s assume a 30 year mortgage with a 3.92& interest rate with zero down (just going off a quick google calculation so no idea if that is even reasonable) + $315 monthly fees = $1658/month. On one hand, you got to start somewhere building equity but I feel like you could do better then this.

    • Good lord, I hope no one in this area seriously considers putting zero down. Even so, it’s hard to find a decent studio to rent for much less than that, especially one that is walkable to the Mall, the waterfront, and 5 of 6 metro lines.
      PITI with 20% down would be about $1200. And I’m guessing that there will be an equity boost once The Wharf development is completed.

      • HaileUnlikely

        I am with you 100% in hoping that nobody would buy this (or anything) with zero down, but at the same time, it also strikes me as somewhat improbable that somebody who is equipped to write a check for $56,800 (with other closing costs probably more like $63000-$64000) would buy this.

      • maxwell smart

        Honestly, I can’t imagine someone who has the savings to put money down would be the in the market for a studio with a Murphy Bed.

    • 1600 With all utilities included doesn’t sound that bad to me for something accessible.
      If the only thing stopping you from homeownership is down payment and closing and you can do zero sheen (like a va loan) why not? More ppl would own for sure.

      • Because it doesn’t make sense to buy something with zero down unless you plan to stay there for a while, and not that many people would really be OK in a studio for a decade. –

        Agree that people who have (somehow!) managed to save $60k would be interested in this. Also, since when is $1600 for a studio a good price?!?! We live in DC, not SF.

        • edit: people who have managed to save $60k would *not* be interested in this, I mean. Because, at my rate, you’d be 40 years old.

        • Studios cost well above 1600 in SF. A friend rented one in SoMa for 2,600, which he considered a steal. Jebus!

    • You’re not likely to get this unit with zero down, so that math isn’t entirely pertinent. 10% down will decrease the monthly amount by close to $150/mo. (Though I agree with you in that you can likely do much better than this.)

    • It’s a crappy deal. That nice studio with a custom murphy bed in Lanier Heights/Adams Morgan was on the market for $140K. I believe it was featured as a GDoN a few weeks ago. You’d be a fool to pay this price, especially in an old SW building where the common charges are only going to increase.

      • I think that studio was unusually cheap — probably an ordinary studio in that area would go for $200K-$250K — but IMO, this one is still somewhat overpriced.

        • Yup – my parents just sold a studio with murphy bed and no building amenities (other than a laundry room) in Foggy Bottom for $225K.

          • Foggy Bottom is pretty much all Coop, which most people aren’t into. Foggy Bottom sells for less than Southwest.

  • that weird decorative thing on the balcony would drive me crazy. its right in the middle of the balcony and would ruin just being able to sit out there. I have been in this building and its nice, with a gym and parking. Not sure if it has a pool or not. two blocks from metro so its probably a good deal.

    • It may share a pool with another adjacent condo building. There’s a picture of it in the listing.

  • The stone/brick whatever lattice blocking the balcony would be horrible to live with!

    • Totally agree. That’s a dealbreaker. I don’t understand why the builder would want to cover up what would otherwise be a nice big window that could let in all sorts of light.

      • This is a relatively cheap attempt at bringing some architectural interest to what is otherwise a plain box. Depending on which direction this unit faces, it could create some interesting shadows that don’t have too much of an affect on the amount of natural light that gets into the unit.

        • no — it’s an MCM feature. There’s a lot of interesting MCM architecture in SW. This may not be your preference, but it’s not a “cheap” feature.

          • I said relatively cheap – this isn’t hand-laid brick detail we’re talking about. Much of the 50s SW was built to accommodate poorer residents who have been displaced as part of DC’s attempt at “urban renewal” that resulted in the wholesale destruction of older (and poorer) rowhome communities in the SW. Check out the wikipedia article on SW Waterfront for further history, but here’s a brief snippet for you:
            “The residential aspect of the project began with a large apartment complex and park called Potomac Place, located on 4th Street between G and I Streets. When Nikita Khrushchev visited Washington in 1959, he pointed out to President Dwight D. Eisenhower the extremely poor dwellings that stood on the way from Bolling Air Force Base (where Khruschev had arrived in the city) to the downtown area; Eisenhower, in response, ordered their driver to pass by Potomac Place in order to show the Soviet Premier that the nation’s capital was working to assist its poorer citizens.”

          • there is a patchwork quality to a lot of the development in SW in post war. There are also gems by IM Pei and Charles Goodman.

            It’s a concrete detail. “Cheap” to me signifies that it’s either unnecessary or going for easy effect. You don’t like it, but I don’t think “cheap” applies to anything except the low material cost of it.

          • “”Cheap” to me signifies that it’s either unnecessary or going for easy effect. You don’t like it, but I don’t think “cheap” applies to anything except the low material cost of it.”
            Isn’t that exactly what’s happening here? Mainly, a low cost measure to bring some interest to an otherwise simple box? And I never said that I don’t like it – I’m not really sure what you’re arguing here. There are plenty of examples of cheap (“low cost”) design that work great.

        • it adds visual interest and breaks up without completely restricting light (which is still ample). I’m not going to argue aesthetics — I don’t know about you, but if I think something looks “cheap”, that’s a pretty good indication that it’s doesn’t suit my tastes. Your post sounds dismissive of something doesn’t suit yours.

      • It’s actually a historic of the piece. This building was what Eisenhower showed the Russians of American Design….

        That being said, as a previous owner of the building (not the unit), this is a great purchase as the equity is building quite steadily in SW. Great purchase for a first time home buyer trying to get into the market with a 5 year upward prediction.

        Plus lest ye forget about the great Cantina Marina. 😀

  • I have a GF that bought in to that building a few years ago for under $200k (very similar sized unit, studio).

    I couldn’t live with a murphy bed. But I hope it goes for this – we’re listing ours slightly higher and it’s a much nicer unit….not as “fancy” a building, but closer to many more things. So yes, PLEASE go for this – and quickly! (I know it’s neighborhood by neighborhood, not city wide, but generally, trends are trends:) )

  • justinbc

    Why! Are! You! Shouting at Me!

  • I think people are trying to get higher prices down in SW the last few years, since the Wharf development is coming. Prices probably are rising some…a few years ago, this area was dirt cheap by comparison with other accessible parts of DC – those days won’t be here again any time soon. So this does seem a bit overpriced for a studio, but it may not seem so in hindsight if prices actually are rising around there fast.

    On the plus side, it has a full-size kitchen, nicely renovated, and open to the studio (not a tiny, unworkable thing in a closet sized room like many studios, including the Dupont area one someone linked to), and it is a condo, unlike a lot of SW and many other small studios around DC, so if the rental policy of the building is liberal, that means it could be an investment property at some point, unlike almost all coops. And taxes and monthly fees are really cheap, they don’t go much lower for what’s included.

    On the negative side, it isn’t huge, and that concrete work outside would bug me – if I lived there, I’d have shades or sheer curtains that let in all the light I could while still obscuring the view of that thing, and also the balcony seems so narrow as to be practically useless for sitting out on, say for coffee or a meal.

    As to Murphy beds, Hardwood Artisans make great stuff, and will customize for you (I’ve had them make me a few pieces) – it is worth it for what you get, but way expensive. Cheaper Murphy beds are available made of MDF, plywood, or perhaps even some of the newer metal ones (though they may not be cheap design). That said those side opening wood ones at HA are things of beauty in a room.

  • If it’s the condo I’m thinking of, sounds like a flipper which is what owners are trying to avoid. I live in this building, wouldn’t be surprised if you see more posts like this on Popville within the next 6-12 months. Color me shocked if this fetches 284K…I’ve got a bigger place and had planned to hold out but may reconsider.

    For those that don’t live in the area and think its a bad deal, the condos aren’t bad…amenities are decent. You’re paying for the area, it’s a prime location in SW.

    • The amenities do indeed seem pretty good, but other than parking, aren’t they covered by the condo fee rather than by the purchase price?

      • The amenities are covered by the condo fee yes, as is maintenance and all that. Parking is completely separate though…and I see signs all the time of people renting their space out so if a potential owner doesn’t have a car, they could rent out the space for maybe $100 a month.

  • It’s priced a little high. The owners are willing to remove the Murphy Bed. It faces West so it gets great afternoon light/sunset. Overlooks a park so it will keep the view. Great building – probably the nicest gym I have seen in a condo building. Low condo fee considering a front desk concierge 24/7 and pool. The best part is the investment! Once the Wharf comes in these prices will skyrocket to that of Dupont/Logan.

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