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Good Deal or Not? Weekly Wed. House Porn “Renov 1870 Victorian on Coveted 1 Way St.” edition

by Prince Of Petworth February 5, 2014 at 1:00 pm 36 Comments

2019 Hillyer Place Northwest

This house is located at 2019 Hillyer Place, Northwest:

popville_house_porn

The listing says:

“CHARMING & RENOV 1870 VICTORIAN TH ON 4 FIN LVLS, ON COVETED 1 WAY, QUIET BLOCK IN THE HEART OF DUPONT. ENTRY VESTIBULE & FOYER, LR & FAM RM W/FPLS, BUILTINS, WINE RM W/WET BAR/REFRIG OPEN TO BELOW W/WALLS OF GLASS, CHEF’S KIT & DR W/WALL OF GLASS TO GARDEN/PATIO/2 CAR PKG, 2ND FLR MBR SUITE W/FPL, BA W/SEP SHOWER, WP TUB, LOTS OF VANITY SPACE, SIT RM/OFFICE & WALKINS 3BR/BA 3RD FLR”

You can see a virtual tour here.

This 3 bed/2.5 bath is going for $1,979,900.

  • Beautiful house and I think the photographer did a wonderful job. I just wish the realtor would stop yelling at me.

  • JJ

    I love all the light from the rear windows. The master bedroom and bath are nice. The kitchen is great especially with the little window seat at the rear. What is up with the powder room though? And seriously people…an almost $2 million dollar home and you’re staging with Yellow Tail wine?

    • kyle-w

      Haha! Good catch. I think it goes back to the good pictures. They wanted a magnum to make sure you would see it, and not many Bordeaux’s come in magnums. Still, kind of funny. You would have been better of picking the cheapish bottle that looks nice though, I agree.

      • “not many Bordeauxs come in magnums”
        This is untrue, they’re quite popular in Bordeaux. They’re just a good bit more expensive.

  • Anonymous

    You know, I could probably make due with the kitchen/dining room being in the basement and on a different floor from the living space.

  • textdoc

    Looks very nice, but I’m not sure how I feel about the kitchen and dining room being on the basement level and the living room/family room being on the first floor — seems like it would be a pain if you wanted a quick snack while watching TV or something. (Not that there’s a TV shown in this staging, but presumably you’d want one somewhere.)

    • Caroline

      Mine’s laid out that way (I think most of these Victorian houses originally had a basement kitchen) and I like it.

      • You are correct, that was the common form. A place we looked at in Logan had the same layout, and I had a similar reaction when I read the listing, but upon seeing it in action it wasn’t that bad, although it helped they used the extra downstairs space for a bar & TV lounge, rather than a full on dining room. They also had the old dumb waiter restored so that you could send food up to the dining room for parties.

        • Caroline

          We saw several when we were looking in Capitol Hill, although most kitchens had migrated upstairs sometime during the life of the house. Our next-door neighbors have the second room set up as a TV lounge, and we’re converting ours into a rental unit. We used to have a dining set in there but never used it; I’m not sure if it’s because the basement is not the nicest space for a dining room, or because we’re just not dinner party people. It would be nice to have a dumbwaiter though! The neighbors have their dining table upstairs and it looks great there, but I can’t imagine carrying lots of dishes up and down the stairs.

          • Yeah that’s the setup they had. I mean honestly, how often do people use a dining table? I think that would be an interesting Friday QotD. I would guess most people today eat in front of a TV. We try to make a point at least half the time to eat dinner at the dining table, especially if we’ve cooked something nice, but there are definitely nights where we completely forego it (especially if I’ve got a Top Chef or Taste recorded to go along with the food).

          • Anonymous

            And if you have a small table or counter with stools in the kitchen you can still eat “properly” without a dining table. I think it’s one of those things people think they’ll use for entertaining, but don’t really use it to justify having a whole room dedicated to it. There are lots of nice folding sets you can pull out if you’re having a crowd over!

          • Rhetorical question – FYI

            Good point, Justin (I hate admitting this).
            .
            I bet people utilize their main dining table way less than they would estimate. And yes, it calls into question whether it’s worth dedicating a large space to something used so sporadically.

          • Rhetorical – please stick to one user name or anonymous. Thank you.

  • anonnn

    I love this, and you really can’t beat that location. If I had the money, I’d snatch this up in a heartbeat.

  • Anonymous

    Nobody is complaining today like they were a few days ago about the island being in between the fridge and the stove?

    • tjd

      I was just about to make the same comment. It must be the difference between “house porn” and “good deal or not?” posts.

    • textdoc

      Hmm, good point. I must admit I was so seduced by the overall look of the kitchen that I failed to notice this. (Although I did think the kitchen needed more closed storage — open storage is less practical.)
      .
      At least in this layout, the fridge and oven are across from the _ends_ of the island, so there wouldn’t be as much island to have to walk around. In that GDoN, the fridge was smack in the middle of the wall opposite the island.

      • Yeah I thought the same thing. That bit of island space can still be used for prep work in between the two. There’s quite a lot of literature out there now discounting the old traditional triangle for the way people live today.

  • This is absolutely lovely. I especially like the windows and it’s really nice how they made the pot rack resemble the light fixture in the dining room. Little touches like that show attention to detail, big bonus when spending this kind of money. I would say this is actually a hell of a deal for that square footage, quality, and location. (although the 1 way street comment is kind of pointless, given that it applies to pretty much all the east/west streets around here)

  • annonny

    Really don’t like the basement kitchen/dining room. Seems very awkward for dinner parties, which I would be having every weekend if I had $2 mil for a house.

    But frankly, if I wanted modern behind a traditional facade, I’d go for this one in the same neighborhood: http://slideshow.mris.com/slideshow/slideshow.htm?ListingKey=98369521830

    • That does look very nice, but it’s $800,000 more for 1,000 less square footage, basically doubling the $/sqft of this listing. And it’s a condo, not the whole house, so you’ve got an extra $475 a month in fees to account for. While beautiful, I wouldn’t exactly call it comparable.

      • Anonymous

        the condo fees are totally offset by the cost of maintaining an entire house. why people fail to understand this about condo fees is puzzling to me. people seem to believe that condo fees are just some evil scam by developers to steal your money, when in fact the residents of a condo pay condo fees TO THEMSELVES to maintain the building and provide for amenities.

        • Oh right, I forgot condo fees never increase for big expenditures.

          • anonnn

            Right, and I forgot that the cost of fixing things on your house never increases. How much have you put into your new roof and whatever else you’ve had to fix on your house, justin? Condo fees spread costs out over a longer period of time.

          • Oh I’ve spent quite a lot, but that’s because when we fix things we fix them 100% the right way. We could have easily gotten by with cheap fixes just like the lady who sold us the place, and the person before her, and just continued to pass the buck on to the next person. I will say that $478 / mo, while expensive, are not nearly as much as I’ve seen for other places. (just look at the CityCenter ones that go in the thousands, but at least you get a “wade pool”) But that’s $5,700+ every single year that you have to account for, on top of what is already going to be a huge mortgage payment. Nobody is saying that condo fees just disappear into thin air, but it’s still a known cost, whereas with owning you can at least control to some degree how much you’re willing to spend for repairs and maintenance.

          • Anonymous

            ^ Exactly. I think you explained it better than I did.

        • Anonymous

          Yes, but it is a guaranteed cost you have to factor in each month in addition to your mortgage. If you own a single family home, you are not guaranteed to have to spend that money. Even though you may end up spending that much or more in a lump sum if something goes wrong, there is a chance you might have little to no maintenance issues depending on the condition of your house/how well you keep it up.

          • Anonymous

            i’m guessing you do not own a single family home. you cannot live in one without spending money on maintenance, and occasionally on big-ticket items like roof, air conditioning, etc.

            where do you people think condo fees go? they are determined by a board of residents, after all, not some evil developer.

          • Anonymous

            Incorrect. I’ve owned two single family homes actually. My first one had only one semi-costly repair in the two years I owned it which cost $1200. Other maintenance, like changing the filter in the furnace, unclogging drains, etc I did myself for next to nothing. So yeah, I was NOT spending $400/month + in maintenance on that house.
            .
            My current house is another story. It’s older, much less renovated and had a lot of major deferred maintenance issues when I bought it. I was very aware of it though and was up for the challenge.

          • Anonymous

            I’m coming up on my third year of owning my house and have not had to repair or replace anything (knock on wood)!

        • Anon

          Don’t forget that the fees include master insurance (basically everything but contents insurance), some utilities (for me: gas, water, trash, sewer), and upkeep (for me, the garden guy that comes in spring/summer that I’d have anyway if I owned a single family home and saving for emergency upkeep or later wear and tear). I didn’t buy in a bigger building because that would have also included stuff like a concierge, gym, party rooms, roof decks, elevators, etc that I didn’t want and wouldn’t use. But others do want those things and do use them, so they are value added to them. In the end, I added up the amount I was spending on my old house on the things included in the condo fee for my new condo and it was pretty much break even. There were some places I looked at where it wasn’t and I choose not to buy those places.

      • annonny

        Since I have neither $1.9M or $2.7M for a house, I’m happy to fantasize about 1,000 less sq ft for higher quality design….as for the condo fees, good catch. I was so starry eyed about the property I didn’t bother to look at the ownership structure. While condo fees are used for *something* and not a complete waste, having lived in a condo for the better part of the last 20 years, I would prefer my own house and my own authority to decide what needs fixing, when, and to what quality standard. Plenty of condo money gets frittered away on crapola quality “repairs” that last only a year or two….or gets spent on completely frivolous stuff.

  • Anonymous

    I’m surprised people like this one. Absolutely no charm, completely hideous bathrooms and cold, modern kitchen. It just doesn’t fit the style of the house. Also what’s up with that awful cheap carpeting in the bedrooms? No.

    • anonn

      If it doesn’t fit the style of the house, what would? I think the interior matches the exterior perfectly. I feel transported to another era, in a really cool way.

      • Anonymous

        Really? It’s a Victorian facade and a completely 1990s interior (if you look on Redfin, it was in fact, renovated in 1998). If by transported to another time, you mean 20 years ago, then yes. But Victorian it is not. I’d expect to see original woodwork/floors, huge mirrored, carved fireplace mantels (not the smaller, more modern ones here), ornate woodwork on staircases and windows/doors, period lighting, etc. At least that is what would make me love this.
        .
        I always find it such a shame that original character has been stripped from so many of these beautiful old homes.

        • Anonymous

          To each their own. I like this particular house. I also like the early 20th century detail you mention. Two different styles – both are perfectly fine by me if well done.

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