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GDoN Revisited by Hipchickindc – 1413 Swann Street, NW

by Prince Of Petworth — September 28, 2012 at 11:00 am 23 Comments

Hipchickindc is a licensed real estate broker. She is the founder of 10 Square Team and is affiliated with Keller Williams Capital Properties. 10 Square Team is a princeofpetworth.com advertiser. Unless specifically noted, neither she nor the company that she is affiliated with represented any of the parties or were directly involved in the transaction reported below. Unless otherwise noted, the source of information is Metropolitan Regional Information Systems (MRIS), which is the local multiple listing system. Information is deemed reliable but not guaranteed.

Featured Property: 1413 Swann St NW
Legal Subdivision: Old City #2
Advertised Subdivision per Listing: Logan
Original List Price: $735,000.
List Price at Contract: $735,000.
List Date: 09/05/2012
Days on Market: 7
Settled Sales Price: $895,000.
Seller Subsidy: $0.
List to Net Sales Price Ratio: 121.77%
Settlement Date: 09/25/2012
Bank Owned?: No Short Sale? No
Type Of Financing: Cash
Original GDoN post is: here.
The listing can be seen: here. The virtual tour can be seen here.

So by now you may have already heard that this property sold for $160,000. above the asking price. It was reported that there were a total of eight offers and that the winning contract to purchase was a cash deal with no contingencies. The purchaser was also able to get to the settlement table less than two weeks after ratifying the contract.

Comments to the original Good Deal or Not (GDoN) post were decidedly mixed, which is not surprising. The same uniqueness that appealed to some, made others question the price in relation to more typical properties in the area. Unique properties are notoriously difficult to price, appraise, and often are difficult to finance.

In this case, the recent sellers started with an alley property that literally had been a garage, although it was described in the 2006 listing as a “modest but efficient apartment”. You can see what it looked like in the old listing (click on the listing link after opening to see the image). At that time, the property was offered for sale at $649,000. and settled for $495,000. I have no idea of the specifics for this particular property, but I’ve had clients with considerable development experience approach properties that were not originally zoned for residential use with much caution. In this case, there was apparently some precedent for residential use of the space.

Carriage houses as residences can offer possibilities of interesting loft-like space that is not otherwise seen in DC, since DC lacks much in the way of true industrial-turned-residential properties. In August 2011, I profiled the sale of 1225 10th St NW. One of my favorite carriage houses ever is this one on Bloomingdale Court.

The listing agents for 1413 Swann St NW were Martin Toews and Jeff Brier with Colwell Banker Residential Brokerage. The buyer was represented by Nathan Guggenheim, an agent with Washington Fine Properties, LLC.

  • Anonymous

    I’m thinking I need to sell my studio apartment that is a couple blocks away from here. Based on the sale above, Im thinking I should ask $500,000 for it.

  • Anon

    That is crazy. We own on the 1400 block of t and based on this our house would go for 1.1M based on just price per square foot

    • Yep – direct price per sq/ft comparison here, nothing at all unique about this property!

      Just curious — do you have a garage? Green roof? High ceilings? Designer interior? High end fixtures?

      • Anon

        Yes to the sub zero, wolf range, Bosch etc on high end appliances, secure off street parking, designer interior..just missing the green roof but have a large deck plus a large atrium in the house.

        • Anonymous

          Sorry. I know the 1400 block of T very well and those houses don’t compare to this cool place.

          • Anon

            Not sure what your point is. I answered your questions but you didnt seem to like the answer.

  • Anonymous

    This should be used as indisputable proof that DC needs to repeal it’s ban on alley dwellings. Apparently they are magnets for millionaires.

  • anon

    Well, as they say some people have more money than brains.

    This wasn’t bought as an investment. It is like a boat, something that someone wants, but that financially doesn’t make any sense to buy. But hey, their money.

    Ther person had to pay cash for it as there was no way it was going to appraise, and when they sell it (if they sell it in the next ~12 years), they will take a loss on it.

    • Marcus Aurelius

      Or when it hits the market again, it will sell in 7 days to someone who will pay well above asking price for it . . . again.

      • Anonymous

        Yeah, I don’t know why you think the demand would diminish so drastically in the next 12 years.

    • Anonymous

      Hmmmm….a cash deal for a place stuck in an alley. Wonder if the buyer is hiding something.

      • And what were the other 8 – above asking price – bidders hiding?!? Your “alley” opinions are antiquated.

        • Anonymous

          The other 8 were all family members of the seller. They were used as decoys to jack the price up.

    • Anonymous

      Anon @ 11:57 Just wait till the poor fools at 1726r 19th St NW, Washington, DC 20009 and 2220 Q St NW Washington, DC 20008 find out that their homes are nothing but pipe dreams!

      Glad to see you are on board with the future

  • Anon

    I think it’s hilarious when people say something is not worth its sale price. It sold for that! Also, it is safe to assume that they had more than one offer for just less than this amount. Or maybe even for more given the extremely strong terms of the offer.

    This house is worth the money. It is one of a handful of properties of its type in DC and people will pay for that.

  • Anonymous

    I feel unnecessarily smug that I was one of the original commenters that said this place would absolutely sell for the asking price or above. Its a cool property and I knew someone would want it… but I am surprised that 8 different people put in bids for above asking price! But it is unique, in a great location and I guess lots of people loved it.

    • I said the same as you and usually I’m pretty bear-ish when it comes to over-valuation in DC. It’s an extremely unique property, considering its location (which is quite good). The only thing I was worried about was the huge condo building going up across the alley; I fee like that could significantly change the ambiance of the location and access to light.

      I knew it would, at least, go for the list price but had no idea that it would ignite a ferocious bidding. And Jesus fuck – $900K IN CASH?!? WTF. Who has that much scratch just sitting around in a bank account? Makes me pretty depressed about my own lot in life, lol.

  • Los

    may be the buyer thinks he can build a couple of floors on top…idk?

  • Anonymous

    The fact that people are paying that much over asking price for an old garage in an alleyway is insane. More money than good sense.

  • It has way more character than 90% of the other properties out there. It’s more than I would have expected it would go for, but in that neighborhood and with that much competition, I’m not surprised they got more than their asking price.

  • gk

    saw it. bad deal. they could have gotten a real house with more than one bedroom in that neighborhood for about the same price or a bit more.

  • Anonymous

    Don’t like lofts, don’t like modern but love, love this one!

  • suibahn

    Anyone saying the buyer had more money than sense isn’t making sense. They had EIGHT offers. Do you think they were all under asking and this guy was the only one who thought it was worth that? No. It was a bidding war and at least one other person thought it was worth slightly under this. I actually have some inside info that 15 people intended to write and many backed out due to the competitive situation and because 4 bidders scheduled pre-inspections so they could write as-is. The fact is, when this buyer wants to sell, he will have hundred of people at the open house (as did these sellers) and many, many people writing as-is offers. Not sure if it’s true, but urbanturf commenters said the winner wasn’t even the high bidder but the terms were the best.


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