GDoN? “walk-out to balcony & patio” edition

DC8575698 - Exterior (Front)

This house is located at 622 9th Street, Northeast. The Listing says:

“Pictures won~t do it! Must see to understand this is a Real Gem. In the heart of Capitol Hill next to vibrant H-street! Gorgeous renovation. Features: 9~ ceilings. Large dining area. Divine Kitchen with Wolf, quartz counters, walk-out to balcony & patio. Vaulted Ceilings in the Master. Separately metered, 2 Bdr appt. Walk to Union Station, Whole Foods, Giant. Capitol Bikes around the corner.”

DC8575698 - Living Room

You can see more photos here.

This 5 bed/3.5 bath is going for $899,000.

83 Comment

  • This house is dirt cheap given quality and location. Should get multiple offers. A house 5 blocks away, on 4th St and G, was asking $1.25 million and went under contract right away.

    • Plus the basement is separately metered and has TWO bedrooms. Way under-priced even if the finishes are boring (the Wolf range is interesting, if you’re into that, but it’s so small that I thought it was a knock-off until I read the description).

    • Absolutely. This should be easily $1 mil.

  • I meant to say “condition” rather than “quality.”

  • I was going to say “Hold up — what is going on with that FRAMED exposed brick above the sofa??” until I realized after looking at another photo that it’s a framed mirror, reflecting the exposed brick next to the stairs.
    I’m still not a fan of exposed brick, but at least this place has no vessel sinks.
    It looks as though that’s FAKE exposed brick being used as a backsplash in the kitchen. I guess that’s better than one of those super-busy mosaic tile things, but I’m still not a fan. Would much prefer plain white subway tile.

    • I can’t tell if it’s fake brick or a flat tile that has a pattern that makes it photograph like brick.

  • Wow, an open concept with stainless steel appliances and a farm sink. It’s never been done before, right?

    • What would make you happier? White appliances? Walls between the dining space/kitchen/LR? undermount sink? Just curious

      • It’s more a reaction to the over the top copy that makes it sound like this particular style of renovation is some sort of rare, brilliant creature.

        • Exactly – I appreciate what appears to be a quality renovation, but I hate how so many classic houses seem to lose all character – especially on the first floors – by these cookie-cutter choices.

          • I’m with you, in that sense. People like the open floorplan concept and flippers are gutting the charm out of old houses and knocking down walls for a quick buck. I wonder if it is a trend and we’ll go back to divided spaces one day, or if the open-concept is here to stay? Thoughts?

          • I Dont Get It

            I may be generalizing but isn’t a reno in an old house easier if you gut it? Makes plumbin, wiring, duct work all more accessbile.

          • I Dont Get It

            what is with my spellin today?

          • It may be easier but it often destroys whatever original charm these houses had. People get upset about popups ruining historic neighborhoods but you don’t hear the same amount of talk about the level of historic interior destruction that’s also occuring. Not a week goes by that I don’t see wonderful interior details (old tiles, heart pine flooring, old millwork) tossed in dumpsters outside of renos.

          • I Dont Get It

            JS I agree with you. My house has the original footprint on the first floor and certain renovations are very challenging but there is no way I would go with an open concept. I would though, like to widen some doorways.

            And yes I have the original heart of pine flooring!

          • When I have 8-12 people over for dinner, (not uncommon) my kitchen is a mess and I sure as heck don’t want people to have to sit in the middle of that. Plus – ceiling pot-lights suck – totally – in every application except a low-ceiling basement. Good lighting is important and tragically overlooked in these “renovations.”

            My row house has a partial wall with big cut-out between dining room and kitchen, and I installed a ceiling track and made full-wall curtains (thanks to the remainder tables at G-Street Fabrics!) so I can just shut the whole mess off and create a cozy dining room.

    • Accountering

      It has, and there is a reason it keeps getting done. People like it, and are willing to pay good money for it. I did it on my first renovation, and I am opening up the house on my second renovation to the extent possible.

      • @MJ Things go in and out of style so yes divided spaces could come back in style. That said, there are people that prefer open and those that prefer divided. We would definitely lose some of the cool things I love about our house if we went open floor plan and I prefer having divided space.

        • @JS You have to realize not everything can be saved. Old tiles? Those were already long gone in my house. The heart of pine floors in my house were not in good enough shape to be restored to make it worth the money in the long run. We still have them upstairs and get splinters in our feet! We’re keeping as much as we can, but some things can’t be saved, or aren’t worth it.

          • And plenty of renos take sledgehammers to houses that are perfectly salvagable. It sounds like your place was in rough shape, but that’s no excuse for renos that destroy houses that aren’t in such bad condition.

          • Accountering

            I don’t particularly care for old details. I wanted my house to be modern, and that is the reason why I did what I did. Keep in mind, not everyone thinks the way you do. Also, I don’t need an “excuse” for how I choose to spend my money renovating my property..

  • No offense to Baltimore, but I would not pay $900K for a house covered with formstone…

    • Well spotted — I totally missed that! But now I see that in the one and only photo showing the front up close, it’s evident that it’s formstone that’s been painted white.

      • Actually, I think once the formstone is painted it doesn’t look too bad. Is there a reason to avoid it, other than looks? I.e., does it not hold up as well or something.

  • This will go for way above ask!

  • HaileUnlikely

    Flips are almost categorically never a good deal, but this is about as close as one can get to an exception. I like this quite a bit. Flipper paid $600K this past September. Anyone know what this house looked like at that time?

  • justinbc

    Not only is this not in “the heart of Capitol Hill”, it’s not actually even IN Capitol Hill. The northern boundary is F St NE. Ignoring that, the price per square foot is pretty legit for a place with a decent renovation. I hate that landing strip look they gave the shower though.

    • It’s like 20 steps north of the border. Come on, don’t be an obnoxious pedant.

    • jim_ed

      F St is where the historic district ends, but in reality the border is H St in any practical use. You can get granular about whether this is in the “heart” of capitol hill, but saying its in Capitol Hill is absolutely true. .

    • I was more offended by the mention of Whole Foods. You shouldn’t be allowed to advertise something that isn’t even near existing.

  • I can’t believe how much houses cost in this city. For the same price you could get an antebellum mansion in Fredericksburg with 17 rooms, 6,300 square feet, recently renovated. Used as a HQ for Union army during the War: And no, I’m not the agent for that home, just wanted to see what else 900 grand could buy in the area 🙂

    • yeah but you have to live in Fredericksburg…

    • justinbc

      And you could also spend 4 hours in your car every day if you lived there and worked in DC. That’s why houses costs what they do.

      • Besides the commute that was already pointed out, I NEVER want a 6,300 sq foot home or even a 4,000 sq foot home. The maintenance, cleaning, furnishings, etc. Ugh, terrible.

        • justinbc

          Yeah seriously. It’s probably another 100K just to furnish a 6,000 square foot house.

          • Yes, of course you would have to commute—if you worked in DC. And yes, you would have to maintain the 6,300 sf. I get that everyone wants the Mr Burns lifestyle. Just saying, 900 thou can literally buy you a historic mansion an hour, hour and a half away. I still stand by my original point that home prices here are downright silly. Yes, it’s the norm, but the norm is out of whack.

          • meant to say *not* everyone wants the Mr Burns lifestyle…

          • If you think about housing prices in other desirable cities like NYC or San Francisco, DC is still behind. It’s becoming a much more desirable and convenient place to live for many people and real estate prices are starting to reflect that. I don’t think that makes it out of whack.

          • Accountering

            I thought you were being sarcastic about the Fredericksburg house. I don’t see how these are remotely relevant.
            That house seems cool, sure, they used it to fight the Civil War. It is also in Fredericksburg, and is 6000+ Sq Feet. Can you imagine what that place costs to heat/cool?

      • Which is why DC will remain, for the foreseeable future, a transient city.

        Affordable housing/condos in a safe area within a reasonable commute are tough to come by. Lack of real infrastructure coupled with it’s obsession with keeping out highrises keeps prices high and out of reach for most.

        • justinbc

          Lack of real infrastructure? What is it missing?

          • People say DC is a transient city, but being from the area I really think it’s mostly like any other city. I have a lot of friends who are from here and still live in the area with no plans to leave. Also, the people that I know that moved away didn’t do it because of lack of affordable housing or commute, but because of life in general: be closer to family, job opportunity they couldn’t pass up, or just to try something different b/c they’ve never lived anywhere else. I’d say every major US city loses people for the same reasons.

          • For those that can afford these 400k+ condos or 1mil+ homes nothing. Infrastructure is perfect (well if you work inside the city that is).

            Outside of that bubble and it deteriorates quickly. There is a reason why it takes 1 hour plus to go just a few miles during rush hour for anyone living outside of that bubble. Getting to and from Tysons, Reston, and the other job centers is a nightmare and BRAC is making it worse. Not everyone has the luxury to work inside the city limits or near a metro stop too.

          • Ben, a $400k condo is roughly $1925 a month PITI. That’s about the same as rent for a one-bedroom in most transitional neighborhoods, and $400k will buy a 2br in a decent number of those neighborhoods. That’s a pretty comfortable mortgage for a couple making $50k each, and compares really well to other large cities.
            I realize that buying a place in D.C. isn’t affordable for everyone, but it is still affordable relative to pay for professionals with college degrees – more so than most smaller cities where people are often paying a larger % of salary for $200k houses that require them to own two cars and spend a boatload on gas and insurance.

          • $1925/month*

            *Assuming a down payment of 80k and condo fees + taxes of 500+/month. We will also assume that couple has no college debt to be able to afford $2500/month in rent 😉 Furthermore just looking recent sales on Redfin, few of those 2br’s are near a metro and would require the person to either own a car or work in the city. My infrastructure argument still stands.

            Hate to sound bitter but these people making that much buying those places either have no debt or have help from parents. Not always the case but it’s becoming more and more the norm in DC. But I’m not arguing housing prices – they are expensive for a reason – there are limited options to where you can live and have a decent commute in this city.

        • SouthwestDC

          I’m fine with paying more for housing to live in a place that is walkable and has a lot of character. Unless I develop some medical condition that makes it hard to walk that’s never going to change. People have different priorities, and those who value other things may not stay here long, but there are a lot of us that do.

          • HaileUnlikely

            I do own a home here, but I definitely sympathize with Park Viewer’s point. One shouldn’t have to pay nearly a million dollars (or be able to outbid developers with > half a mil in cash) to get a home in an area that is walkable. The DC area has a lot of people who earn a lot of money, many more who earn somewhat less but are willing to stretch to the max to try to keep up. For those who don’t earn a ton and aren’t interested in playing that game, buying something here is really f*cking hard.

          • The sad fact is that 50% of available housing stock in DC is neglected because people (rightly) don’t want to live in high-crime areas. There are beautiful neighborhoods with very sweet houses in Anacostia – super convenient to Capitol Hill. Fix crime= double the available housing.

          • @victoria
            Fix crime? How about fix poverty

          • To anon”fix poverty” – I come from 3 generations of dirt poor -(immigrant coal miners, factory workers etc.) who did not ever rob people at gunpoint, burgle houses or steal cars. Poverty sucks, but it does not require criminal behavior.

          • Victoria, since poverty does not require crime, all we have to do then is ask nicely, right? Maybe round-up the trouble makers and have an honest heart-to-heart. “Hey, I know you’re poor, but I too had poor family members, and they didn’t commit crimes! So you shouldn’t either, mmkay?”
            That should do it.

          • west_egg

            @Anonymous 5:52 — Yes, indeed, that *should* do it! Too bad it won’t. I don’t care how poor you are, you shouldn’t rob people and you certainly shouldn’t shoot anyone. There’s absolutely no excuse.

        • What infrastructure is lacking?

          As for the cost of housing, I haven’t noticed the NYC or San Francisco has suffered from costly housing and some transient residents.

          If anything contributes to transiency it’s the turnover, every four years or so, of executive level govt appointees.

          • Just about everything outside of living near a metro ($$$) or MARC/VRE stop ($$) and working inside the city requires a car.

          • @Ben, sounds like the infrastructure is there. It’s you that just can’t afford it. Sorry to sound like an arse, but that’s just how it is. I don’t see the infrastructure issue if you live in the city (yes, where it is expensive).

          • HaileUnlikely

            MJ – DC is something like 68 square miles. You seem to mean something quite specific by “in the city.” I get your point, but the city is waaay larger that the parts that we talk about on this blog, and Ben’s point holds up for probably more than half of the city.

          • HaileUnlikely

            and also note, as Ben does, that some people live in prime locations within the city but work outside of the city. There are good high-paying jobs to be found in Rockville and Tysons. The commute from Columbia Heights to Tysons is not exactly enviable, though. I think Ben’s point is basically accurate unless you both live in a few select areas within the city *and* either work either from home or downtown.

          • @HaileUnlikely – OK, so the point is that infrastructure sucks in the burbs? Yes, no doubt! I lived in Rockville/Bethesda for 15 years. Traffic sucked and it is definitely car-centric living. Then I moved to DC proper and it is a world of a difference. It is expensive, but you pay for what you get. For the sake of argument, I would dare say that this blog DOES only talk about DC “proper”, and not Rockville, Arlington, and the rest of the burbs.

          • Lol thanks MJ for bringing us back to my original point. Infrastructure in this area is lacking (or is at least highly targeted) which drives home prices that are near it through the roof.

          • HaileUnlikely

            Basically agreed. Just thought it was worth stating explicitly rather than just taking for granted that everybody lives in Logan and works by Metro Center or whatever. Ben brought up BRAC, which led me to believe that he or a member of his family might have been affected by it. Most of those affected by BRAC do not work in DC proper (even if they do live in DC proper). Even if he himself wasn’t, it illustrates an important general point. Even for those who live in prime locations in the heart of DC proper, not everyone also works there.

          • @ Ben – Your original point was “Which is why DC will remain, for the foreseeable future, a transient city. Affordable housing/condos in a safe area within a reasonable commute are tough to come by. Lack of real infrastructure coupled with it’s obsession with keeping out highrises keeps prices high and out of reach for most.” I think where some of us were lost is that you were complaining about infrastructure outside the city, not within it. Within the city being the core of this blog. Anyway, sure, as a home owner in the city, I’m fine with your rant. Some of us decided to move to smaller houses in the city because it is a sure financial bet, and it will continue to be so.

          • HaileUnlikely

            Basically agreed, just thought it was worth stating explicitly. Ben brought up BRAC, which, whether he himself was affected by it or not, is a good and needed reminder that not everyone who lives in the core of DC proper also works there. Most affected by BRAC now work in the burbs, even if they previously worked in the city (e.g., Walter Reed). More generally, some do not have the luxury of a good job that they can walk or Metro to, even if they live in a nice rowhouse or condo across the street from a metro station the heart of the city.

          • HaileUnlikely

            Apologies for the virtual duplicate post – the 4:58 PM one took a long time to show up so I thought that it had been deleted or something…

        • Right… because highrises in NYC have made housing there so cheap. NOT.

          • Eh at least they can live outside the city limits and take reliable commuter trains into the city. 1+ hour sitting on the train != 1+ hours sitting in stop and go traffic.

          • justinbc

            We have commuter trains here too (VRE and MARC).

          • SouthwestDC

            As far as I know there is not much or any housing that you can walk to from the VRE or MARC. Or if there is it’s relatively expensive.
            My sister and her husband recently bought a newly renovated SFH in NJ for under $300k. It’s in a cute neighborhood with a strip of shops/restaurants (comparable to Barracks Row) and the train that takes you to NYC. For a while they didn’t even own a car there.
            You can’t really get that setup in VA/MD, or if you do you’re paying a premium for it. I do think that if you’re going to live in the suburbs there are better places than the DC suburbs to do it.

          • I said reliable 😉 Look up the timeliness of VRE – they share tracks with CSX and often are delayed because of feight so it’s not the railways fault.

            Besides commuter trains in this area are only helpful for people who work in the city. With big job centers in Tysons, Fairfax, Bethesda, Reston, Rockville etc etc it’s not too helpful. In NYC your big job center is NYC. This area it’s becoming tougher and tougher to connect and any ideas to do so (Purple line, Silver line) etc are met with huge opposition. You can switch jobs tomorrow and end up with a commute that more then triples.

            Just look a the numbers As of 2005 Tyson’s Corner spewed out 250,000 (a quarter million) daily commuter trips, stealing the Capital Beltway from most other users. This is obviously much, much, much higher now. The silver line helps – but is only helpful to those paying the millions to live close to it. Plus there is no way to go from Tysons to Maryland without taking 1.5+hours via metro.

          • Job sprawl is one of the worst things about D.C., for sure. But actually I think that they never should have built the Silver Line, because it is only going to get worse now and a lot of people will have jobs in Reston while their spouse works in D.C. Most of NoVA is car-dependent or MORE expensive than D.C., so either your commute or your housing is going to suck. High rises didn’t cause this, though – there’s plenty of land for more office space in D.C. I think it has more to do with 1) business taxes and 2) if you’re an employer in VA your employees have fewer rights, and that’s always handy.

    • Well yeah, you could buy a castle in France’s Loire region
      or a studio in Soho.

    • I Dont Get It

      Not making an offer on it but I enjoyed looking at the pictures and reading the history. Thanks for posting the link.

  • Anonomnom

    This will probably go above asking, especially with an income property on the first floor that will likely rent at 2/3 of the mortgage.

    Its done nice…. But I agree with commentators who say it doesn’t have much character. Don’t get me wrong, it is gorgeous inside. But there is nothing to really show that this is a rehab rather than completely new construction.

  • Why do I love that couch so much?! That is a great color.

    • Same! I love all of the white/off white furnishings in general, it’s done really nicely. But that couch just makes it amazing. Can I just buy the furnishings and not the whole house?

  • Wait — did I miss something? Where is there a Whole Foods over here?

  • The basement apartment doesn’t seem to have an oven or stove. I know not everyone cooks, but are there really people who will pay to live in a place where that’s not even an option?

    • Unfortunately, yes. I’ve seen listings on CL asking 1300+ for an English Basement with only a hot plate and a mini-fridge. :\

      • Did it rent for that much?
        I’ve only recently started using my oven, so roth a full fridge and a stovetop and no oven, I think I could manage….if the price was right.

    • That was probably for the builder’s convenience, not than the buyer’s. Apparently providing full cooking facilities means that it qualifies as a separate dwelling, which introduces a bunch of potential DCRA-related headaches.

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