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GDoN “Five Finished Levels Custom Designed & Green Engineered” edition

by Prince Of Petworth August 5, 2015 at 12:45 pm 35 Comments

This house is located at 951 14th Street, Southeast. The listing says:

“Five Finished Levels Custom Designed & Green Engineered * Spectacular Entertaining Space Inside&Out * Chef’s Kitchen, Fireplace, Bamboo Floors, EcoCline Roof, GuardFoam Insulation * 2-Story Master Loft w/Private Roof Deck * Second Master Suite w/Bath & Balcony * Income-Generating 2BR/2BA Basement w/CofO * OSP Available * Near Potomac Metro, Harris Teeter, Eastern Market, Barracks Row * See 3D Tour”

You can see more photos here.

This 6 bed/5.5 bath is going for $1,420,000.

  • Emily

    I love the green & yellow color combo next door! I hate green but it works somehow.

    • Aglets

      agreed. it’s super cute.
      Can not say the same for the interior of the featured house.

      That weird desk in the middle of that sad office room? *fart noise*

  • JKC

    i’ve been inside before, this house is impeccably designed and maintained. an absolute dream home for someone who can afford it!

  • This is like a house mullet and I’m not sure I like it. The kitchen is caught in the middle of the business and the party and it’s not good.

    • ash

      Totally gonna use this phrase as often as possible. Of course I’ll give you full credit.

  • anonymous

    Don’t care for the enclosed kitchen, hate the front door and the salmon wall color…But I love the rear staircase and the rear wall of windows.

  • MAR

    I am not in love with the design choices but this looks like a really nice renovation. I really like how they left the wood trim unpainted but whether its worth 1.4M I have no idea. Interestingly it looks like someone paid ~699k for the house and then later sold it for ~399k…if that is true I feel so terribly for that person.

    • eastside

      Don’t feel bad for them. They are the reason for the great recession. A number of parties colluded on that criminal sale. It came back around at 399 = fair value on an uninhabitable foreclosure.

  • It’s not that I don’t think it’s a pretty neat house (glad to see some unique features), it’s just that who is going to spend $1.4M to live in that location?

    • SF

      This is what’s perplexing me. It’s near a metro sure but that is a sort of… not so nice area.

      • Anonymus

        I know the niceness of an area is very subjective, but south of Pennsylvania over the years has had similar/lower violent crime rates than most areas this far east and north of Pennsylvania. Granting, of course, that often times this area *feels* unsafe because of Potomac Gardens and Hopkins. But that’s a perception issue and not borne out in reality.

        • petworther

          Nonetheless, at 1.4 mil you have a lot of choice in where you live. I think for most people the answer is “not near a housing project.” Even if the house is really nice. I think they over-renovated for the area.

          • Anonymus

            Totally agree with that. I did a quick look and no SFH has sold for over $1 million on this side of Pennsylvania and east of 11th basically ever. This is clearly a swing for fences. It will fall short, of course, it’s just a matter of how short of 1.4 it goes.

          • Hilleaster

            With a 2 BR/2 BA income unit that’s almost completely above grade, you could offset your mortgage by about $2300-$2500? (conservatively). With another 2800 ft2 for the owner in their house at the level of the finishes and amenities that is offered for the proximity to the metro and Barracks Row/ Eastern Market, I think it’s doable. A 2 BR house sold on the 1300 block of Potomac Ave (1 block away) for $949k and wasn’t nearly as large and the finishes, new in 2006, a bit tired. You don’t think those in the projects (that people assume are the trouble makers) at Potomac Gardens cross Pennsylvania Ave to the 1200 – 1400 blocks of C, D, E, or G or 11th Street to 9th or 10th where homes that are 1/3rd of this size routinely sell for 800-900k? These evil doers have a pact with the city to stay within a 2 block radius?

            Those that naysay a location that is 2 blocks to the Potomac Avenue metro because it is south of Pennsylvania Ave are the same people who are “almost” people. I almost bought in Logan before whole foods. I almost bought on H Street before Joe Englert. I almost…but never…could see the potential until it wasn’t available anymore.

        • SF

          I appreciate that, as I live in an area that “feels” less safe than it really is. Still: $1.4 million for a place located where that explanation is necessary?!

    • HaileUnlikely

      I don’t find this area particularly uncomfortable, but aside from the “who with this much money would live there?” question, it isn’t an area where I’d want to go prancing around shouting, “Look at meeee! I own the most expensive in the whole neighborhood,” either.

  • I Dont Get It

    I’ll never understand million dollar homes with $99 toilets.

  • Bob

    I feel like I should love this house, but I don’t. Something feels off to me.

  • Rich

    The loft is is pretty impractical. Otherwise, it’s nice to see a place that isn’t cliche-ridden but i doubt it’s worth the price.

  • susan

    Wow, go have a look at this on google street view (image is from June 2012). They dug out the entire front yard. I like parts of this house, but $1.4 million is a lot to live close to Potomac Gardens seems like a bad deal to me.

  • anon

    I’ve actually been to gatherings in this house, and it has a much better flow/better outdoor space than these pictures show. I really loved the updates.

    I think what you’re paying for here, other than a thoughtful reno (I often cite this popup as an example of one looking reasonable from the street), is the income property(properties?) on the lower levels.

    • Anonymous

      So is the basement + ground floor the income unit? And then the main unit is the top 3 floors? It’s difficult to understand the spaces based on these photos. Who has access to the backyard? Only the income unit?
      This really feels like two distinct homes. The seller could probably bring in more money by forming a condo association and selling each unit individually. Hard to get someone who can spend $1.4m to live in that ‘hoodtastic location. IMHO.

  • wdc

    I like it. Don’t know that location, but it’s a nice house.
    More importantly: any chance anyone knows something about the picture of the lacewing over the fireplace? I LOVE that. I want that.

  • Anonymus

    Interestingly, this is a house that breaks basically all the new R-4 zoning changes (height, floors, addition depth) that was meant to stop pop-up condo conversions but is still a single family home.

    • anonymous

      It isn’t a single family home – there is a separate apartment in the basement without internal connecting stairs to the main house. (It may be considered single family for lending purposes, but this is a two-family home.)

  • Steve F

    Double pedestal sinks?! Double vessel sinks?! Why do people hate counter top space?

    • anonymous

      Some people hate tables and other flat spaces because it tends to collect clutter (not me). I absolutely hate vessel sinks, but I absolutely love pedestal sinks – they save a lot of floor space, so can really make small bathrooms seem bigger, and you don’t bump into the vanity because it isn’t there.

  • anonymous

    Seems like it may be a bit overdeveloped for the neighborhood.

    It isn’t truly 5 stories – it has a double height partial 4th story with a lofted up in the high part. I think that’s supposed to be a master suite, but as the master (mistress?), I’m not sleeping in a loft where I have to climb stairs to get to the bathroom below in the dressing/sitting area part of the suite. I don’t like climbing up and down stairs to pee when I’m tired. Also, since there’s no room up there for anything but a low bed, I’d feel like I was sleeping in a cage, looking at those wire sides to the loft area. So, it seems to me that this whole area works better as a guest suite. So then there are 3 other bedrooms on the original top floor – one with its own bath (which I’d wan to use as a bedroom), then two more bedrooms in front, one of which is tiny, and a hall bath for them. There’s also an open room on that floor for a sitting room or any other use area, which is nice.

    But I think the value of that pop-up master suite is going to be of value to only specific buyers, given how it is designed. I suppose you could use the sitting/closet level of it as a bedroom, adding a curtain to close off the closet, and just use the small awkward loft for a place to exercise or the like – it seems like wasted space to me, that lifted small top level. Or it could be an office, and you could have your guests sleep up in the loft.

    • ET

      I definitely think it is over-improved and a bit rich for the area and I live a few blocks away. I also agree that some of the choices are fairly taste specific. It will be interesting to see what the sale price for this ends up being and how long it takes to sell. House priced correctly will sell in less than a week in this area. If it is still for sale 2 weeks from now it is overpriced.

      The house at the corner of 11th and C SE (at 301) has been on the market for about a month the current price is $1,850,000 and I think it might have been reduced. It too was really, really fixed up and is 5 bedrooms with a more traditional layout and a basement unit and it is obviously still for sale.

  • Anonymus

    There are so many positive things to this but so many weird design/layout choices but the kitchen just has everything wrong. The open cabinetry. The refrigerator on the other side of the transom/recessed into the wall in the hallway. The awkward spaces on either side of the sink. It’s just so amazingly not functional it’s actually impressive.

    • anonymous

      Actually, that placement of the refrigerator when you have a kitchen in the center of a row house really makes a lot of sense. It avoids having the fridge sticking out in the way. I bought a place that was renovated like this and found it quite clever and worked really well. Of course, mine was somewhat better thought out, as the recess that held the refrigerator also had room for a 30′ cabinet and counter right next to it, so there was room to set stuff down when taking it in and out of the fridge. And the recess went almost to the ceiling, there was room for a row of cupboards above the fridge and counter. There was also a shelf for a microwave between the counter an the top cupboards. Having the fridge out there leaves more space in the kitchen, and also makes it easy for people to get drinks or snacks from the fridge without entering the kitchen which may be crowded with people cooking, prepping food, cleaning up, etc.

      I do agree that the sink is awkwardly placed. I would have put it in the counter looking out over the dining room, as I seem to spend a lot of time at the sink, and like having a direct view out a window when doing so.

    • kate

      I was thinking the same thing about the cabinets. All the space and no kitchen cabinets? WHY?!

  • area_man

    You know what’s even better than sitting on the roof with the AC unit and plumbing vent pipes? Sitting on the front porch! Apparently this is the lost wisdom of the ancients. I bet this place used to have a really nice porch that the primitive inhabitants of yesteryear really enjoyed.


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