From the Forum – comparing apartment buildings near Mt Pleasant/Adams-Morgan

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comparing apartment buildings near Mt Pleasant/Adams-Morgan

“I’m looking at pretty comparable 1-bedroom apartments in the Chalfonte (Harvard and Argonne, off 16th), the Argonne (same), and the Park Meridian (16th and Euclid). The sizes and prices are similar enough that the decision really comes down to building quality. Does anyone have recent experience with any of these buildings? If so, can you speak to pests, management responsiveness (or management attempts to screw renters), heating/cooling issues, noise, construction, or anything else that might be relevant? Thank you!”

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26 Comment

  • Emmaleigh504

    I have a friend who lived in Chalfonte and she liked it. It’s a Bernstein building, and they are great. I live in a different Bernstein building and have no complaints, only raves for them.

  • Im sorry to hi-jack…..i have an emergency question- Do you have to supply tenants with a TOPA if looking to sell a rental property occupied by tenants w/ lease? If all parties come up with an agreement and they offer to move out to allow me to sell, is there anything i need to be concern with?

    • Yes, if they live there they have topa rights…they can sell to anyone.
      I’d get something signed saying they don’t plan to enact their rights asap. They don’t have to leave though so I hope you’ve had good relations with them.

      • I know they have rights, but if we agree say I pay 5k plus all moving expenses and they move out next week, is there anything down the road that can come back to haunt me and affect the sale?

    • Yes. You will have issues with the settlement attorney at closing if the TOPA rights were not properly waived by your tenants. You don’t enter into a separate agreement. You must use the forms provided for letting them know of their TOPA rights. They have certain lime limits for the tenants to act in them. The tenants can maybe waive their right and sign them away earlier than the set number of days – but I wouldn’t assume that. Check with an attorney who works for a title company. They are the experts for this stuff in DC.

  • Good friend lives in Chalfonte. Her place gets amazing afternoon light. Kitchen is TINYTINY, but they seem to like it! I think she said the gym was pretty laughable.

  • I lived in the Chalfonte for many years (2004-2012) before I became a homeowner. It was a great place to rent. It is an older building (window units, radiators and no dishwashers), so it may not have the bells and whistles of the Argonne but it had a lot of charming features. I really loved the 1 bedroom with sun room that I lived in for the last few years. I do remember though that about the time I left, they had opened a small but decent exercise room and were maybe starting to add dishwashers to units(?). Mostly I found the management to be available, consistent (not a lot of staff turnover) and responsive. One summer day, my window A/C didn’t seem to be working anymore. I let the folks in the office know in the morning and when I came home in the afternoon, the A/C was already replaced. I asked if a light could be installed in the bedroom closet and they happily obliged and sent in an electrician to do it. The one time I had a pest problem, they got right on it and treated aggressively.

    • Oh, and my favorite part is that Argonne Place is really quiet but still a few steps from major transit lines, shopping, restaurants and other places you may want to go/visit.

  • I have lived in both the Chalfonte (2013-2014) and the Park Meridian (2011-2012). Both had pests (roaches), though in my opinion, the Chalfonte’s pest issues were worse, particularly on the lower floors. The Chalfonte, however, was better managed. (I should note that ownership of the Park Meridian may have changed since I lived there). In my experience Bernstein is one of the better large landlords in this town. I have lived in two different Bernstein buildings and when it came to management and/or maintenance issues, I was always impressed. Also, although both buildings have sparse amenities, the Chalfonte’s were superior. But I really enjoyed having the balcony in the Park Meridian and at least back then, it offered a lot more space for the money. At the end of the day, you will have a similar living experience in either one. Also, welcome to the neighborhood!

  • Chalfonte and Argonne are in Lanier Heights. It’s a real neighborhood, I promise.

    Chalfonte’s gym has brand new equipment and the apartments are huge compared to new construction.

  • I lived in the Argonne. The walls (and ceilings/floors) are VERY thin. A friend of mine who also lived there was repeatedly threatened by her downstairs neighbor for walking around in her apartment. Management was sympathetic, but there wasn’t really anything they could do. The pool is great but tended to fill with bros. The gym was depressing and bad.

  • Another vote for the Chalfonte. Lived there 2011-2013 in a 1-bedroom on the top floor. Very basic kitchen and bathroom. Never had pest problems (surprising for a DC apartment building with only 5 floors), management was pretty responsive if we had any plumbing/electrical issues, everything else was standard. Laundry room operates w/plastic cards, the ‘fitness center’ is pretty much 2 ellipticals, 2 treadmills and some weight machines, but it does the job if you just want a basic workout. We did have one or two packages stolen from in front of our door–not sure if they reinstated having packages dropped at the front desk and signing for them–which sucked, but our next-door neighbor looked out for us and took packages in sometimes, and vice versa. Also, the closet was amazing. I miss that closet so much. It was almost bigger than the bathroom.

  • I lived in the Argonne from 2013-2014 and I loved it. If I hadn’t moved in with my boyfriend I would definitely still be living there. I know there have been a lot of changes & renovations in the past year but hopefully all for the better – at the time there was basement laundry and a small but usable-in-a-pinch exercise room, both of which I believe they were planning to improve. The pool is awesome. Francis at the front desk is awesome. Having Pica Taco and a small market in the basement is a HUGE perk in my book (def ate pica taco at least once a week). My biggest complaint (and this may have also changed since last year) is that building management always communicated with residents by putting a note on their door, including for stuff like “we need to enter your apartment to install new windows/check your smoke detector/whatever.” As someone who was often not home for several days at a time I would miss the note and it would turn into a headache for both me and the workers. Hopefully by now they have upgraded to email or phone for those issues. but overall, great place to live.

  • I lived in the Argonne 6 years ago. The building had some serious issues. The windows were absolutely awful. It was like a wind tunnel on a windy day. So trying to keep your place well insulated from the heat or cold was impossible. They gave me a window unit during the summer time which they sealed “air tight” with duct tape and cardboard. In the winter time I used a humidifier because the heat would dry the air to unbearable levels. Also, my balcony door would blow open if it was too windy. I came home to a soaked room after storms on numerous occasions. But they did have a pool and this was my view:

  • I’ll echo what everyone has said about the chalfonte. I rented a studio and loved my apartment. The layout was great with a large eat-kitchen, lots of windows, a big entry foyer and huge closer. The building is old, there’s no perks or amenities, except for the gym, but it’s a very charming building. Common areas are well maintained, the staff is friendly and responsive. Any issues I had were addressed immediately. There are some issues that you’d expect with older buildings, the water was frequently turned off during the day, ongoing maintenance and updated of apartments, I saw pests occasion, particularly on the basement level, but nothing too bad. Management was professional and not out to screw renters. Highly recommended!

  • I lived in the Chalfonte from September 2013-September 2014. I lived on the 1st floor near one of the entrances and never had a roach problem, and very little if any noise problems with the entrance. Management was always very helpful and friendly, and any maintenance issues were addressed quickly. Our unit had a bit of a dated kitchen, and it was small, but the rest of the space was large. Overall, I really do recommend for that neighborhood.

  • Lived in Chalfonte for a year! Awesome hardwood floors and responsive front desk. Cons were the small kitchen with no dishwasher and little counter space, saw some roaches in the beginning, broken washing machines downstairs, and really tiny elevators that make moving furniture uncomfortable. Despite this, I still enjoyed my time and really left cause I was in a sunroom and could afford something a bit nicer after saving. Location is great with a close grocery store and nice residential streets surrounding. Also can walk to the Target

  • I live in the Argonne now and really like it. They’re getting close to finishing a complete remodel in all the common areas. The gym is brand new and everything in general is way more modern and bright.

    Management has been fine but I haven’t pressed on anything. I love the day and night concierge people.

    I haven’t had any issues with pests on an upper floor, though I hear of issues on the lower floors. I got one of the large (~650 sq ft) studios and really love it. I got a brand new kitchen and the walk-in closets are HUGE too.

  • Have you considered the Majestic at 16th and Lamont? It’s super convenient to the S bus lines/the metro/and the 42. I’ve lived there for a bit over a year now and have been pretty pleased. And the rents are really reasonable for the area.

    I live on one of the higher floors and while the amenities leave much to be desired, the walls are pretty thick and I rarely hear my neighbors. I’ve seen a few bugs, but not roaches. It’s an OLD building, but they’ve done a pretty good job keeping up the bathrooms and kitchen areas.

    As far as the staff, they’ve recently hired evening guards which has been great for package pick-up after normal business hours, but their regular 9-5 folks aren’t the best I’ve met. But they’re not the worst either, so there’s that.

  • Hi! I was looking at all of these buildings just a few months ago. I looked at the Argonne, but wasn’t impressed when I toured it all that much. And IIRC the Chalfonte didn’t have any vacancies suitable for me at the time.

    I ended up going with the Washington House at 16th and V. It’s on the other end of Meridian Hill Park from the places you’re looking at, but it has the advantage of being close to U Street, as well as to Adams Morgan. The apartments are pretty nice, and they have a range of sizes, and the building has central air. I’ve only lived in the building for a few weeks, but the leasing and management staff have been great so far. All really friendly.

    So just another option to think about if you’re willing to expand your desired area a bit!

  • I lived in the Chalfonte (or Chalfon-tay, as we called it) from 2010 to 2013. I had a tiny studio with a tiny kitchen, but I was single at the time and it was great. I never heard my neighbors because of the nice thick old-timey plaster walls, rent was affordable (no utilities), and I got a lot of use out of the gym. The management was super-friendly and responsive, and the common areas are clean and well-maintained. The downsides are that there are loud window units (but hey, you’re not paying utilities so blast the air in the summer) and a radiator that only turns on or off, so I had my window open sometimes in the winter. It’s an old building, so they used to turn off the water once or twice a week to address plumbing issues, but maybe that’s gotten better. It’s not a super fancy new building with flashy amenities, but in general, it was a great place to live. The only reason I left was because my now-husband and I bought a house, and the very reasonable rent allowed us to save up for that house. If a relationship can survive sharing a 300-square foot room for a year, anything is possible.

  • lived in the argonne. had pest problems. management was definitely responsive.

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