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Good Deal or Not? “Great spot, great lot” edition (reader request)

by Prince Of Petworth August 21, 2012 at 1:00 pm 23 Comments

This house is located at 1517 A Street, SE:

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The listing says:

“A step or two from all of Capitol Hill, & the Capital, metro system & the Mall. Great spot, great lot. Three levels refinished, modified & improved… Your agent or us can show the property with a call.”

You can see more photos here.

This 4 bed/2.5 bath is going for $699,000.

  • Troy

    Could’ve at least treated the deck to a minimal coat of something, seems pretty standard (insert “yawn” here) fare…But they’ll buy it at a 4 or 5.5 not 699.

    • anon

      actually, given that it looks new, they were wise to leave it untreated for about a year until it has a chance to finish outgassing and weathering. That’s the standard treatment. The fence looks like cedar, which is the right material, but if you must nitpick the deck looks like PTP, which is really only advisable for posts. A composite would be better for deck material.

    • SF

      “at a 4”

      Chuckle. Right Troy. I hope for your sake you’re not trying to buy a house in this area.

      • WalbridgeGuy

        If, however, he’s trying to sell then he’s certainly right that there’d be buyers at $400k.

  • T

    Seems steep for Kingman Park. The wildcard is RFK though, right? Does anyone know the latest on any plans to revamp that RFK-Armory area? A quick google search is not fruitful.

  • No character at all. 🙁

    • AngryParakeet

      I worked with a man who grew up on that block in the 50’s-60’s and went to Eastern. He sold the family place there when his mom passed about 10 years ago. The houses were not built with any character. They were utilitarian, for large working class families and didn’t have details to lovingly restore.

  • Anonymous

    Don’t think this is Kingman Park, T. Hill East if anything.

    Drawbacks for me are the basement (low ceiling makes the rooms pretty impractical and wasted renovation), and graveled backyard. Agree with others that this seems pretty lackluster overall.

    • anon

      basement isn’t wasted and depends on your perspectie — for a rec room for kids or a potentially cheap legal rental that space is perfectly fine. Ceilings look like they meet the necessary minimum height. Possibly claustrophobic for a 6’2″+ renter, may less so for a 3′ pipsqueek.

      • Julie

        Lazy construction. The basement wasn’t dug out enough so they had to cut the doors to wedge them in.

        • anon

          It’s not lazy, as much as cost effectiveness. It’s serious cash to dig out a basement. If you aren’t projecting the space as an income generator, it works well as a den or rec space … Not to mention someone will still pay plenty to rent it if converted even at this height.

          • Julie

            Given that its a flipped house, it is lazy that if they already dug out the basement – they didn’t spend the extra time or money to dig it out to a useable size. The sawed off doors just look tacky.

  • dcgent

    Had hoped to see this last weekend as we bought a similarly-sized (4bd/2.5bath) just down the block for a bit more–but I like to think ours has a more original and nice layout than this flip job (bought a few months ago for $360k). There were 3 offers on the place we got, suggesting they might get this price, but they also face competition from two very nice houses on 16th street and A–saw the corner last weekend and we would have considered that (same price) over this one. Neighborhood remains a bit gritty but we’ve found A St itself to be very friendly and safe–we’re happy with our move. The RFK-Armory revamp is out for rebidding after DC dragged its feet on bids submitted several years ago–it’s looking to do a few parcels at a time versus everything at once. I agree (hope) this could be next growth area. Schools need help still, which may limit people with kids looking for 4 bedrooms.

  • Anonymous

    700k? I feel like Rip Van Winkle, Did I sleep through a major price-resurgence in SE DC? Maybe it’s the Capitol Hill area, but I’d much rather spend that money in Petworth to buy a much larger house.

    • Anonymous

      “Did I sleep through a major price-resurgence in SE DC?”

      Yes, you must have! Prices have shot up in this area in recent years. I remember seeing a few houses for under $600k when we started looking in 2009, but these days you can barely get a shell for that price. This price doesn’t sound unreasonable, especially considering the size and the proximity to the park.

    • Anonymous

      Also some people, especially those without kids, prefer location over size.

      • anon

        Not sure I follow. Hill house lean towards small, yet many families attracted to this neighborhood anyway

        • Anonymous

          Was replying to the guy above who thinks this is a bad deal because you can get a much bigger house for the same price in Petworth. I actually think this house is pretty big, and I certainly wouldn’t want to be in a less desirable location just to have even more rooms I wouldn’t use. But I was thinking maybe someone with kids would find the additional space necessary and worth the tradeoff.

  • dcgent

    Odd, this just had a $1000 price increase to hit $700k.

  • A

    Keeps switching from $699 to $700 and back to $699 to be placed on the top of the redfin search. I wish this agent would stop with this stupid nonsense. We all know that trick.


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