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DC’s first for-sale “micro unit community” now on the Market

by Prince Of Petworth December 18, 2015 at 3:45 pm 18 Comments

courtesy McWilliams|Ballard

Check out some cool virtual tours of the units at 2424 17th Street, NW here and here.

From a press release:

“McWilliams|Ballard announces the commencement of sales at Moda 17, a contemporary condominium community located in the vibrant Adams Morgan neighborhood of Washington, DC. Moda 17 Features 38 micro condominium residences designed by local developer Adams Investment, a leader of innovative residential design throughout Northwest Washington.

As Washington’s first for-sale micro unit community, Moda 17 offers buyers a premium European-inspired residence at a very affordable price point. The community features a mix of studio, one and two bedroom residences with panelized kitchens, sleek appointments, outdoor living space, on-site storage and bike lockers. Select homes feature custom built-in beds, cabinetry and moveable walls to allow the homeowner to maximize their living space. Units are priced from the mid $200’s.

“The quality of a condominium in the city cannot be measured by square footage alone. In today’s market, it is about efficiency of design, quality of finishes, location and price. Moda 17 is an opportunity for someone to purchase a new home in Adams Morgan with high-end finishes and private outdoor space for less than they currently pay in rent,“ says Clint Mann, Executive Vice President at McWilliams|Ballard.”

  • Anonymous

    “I would like to be the first to welcome our new placeless Millennial Overlords.”

  • JohnH

    I can appreciate the idea, but the model of the 1 bedroom is basically a well laid out studio. If an actual studio starts at the 250s, I don’t know about paying in the I’m guessing mid-300s for the “1 bedroom”.

  • Harry

    I like the idea and very slick technology to show off the place. I wonder if the units include a dishwasher.

    • Josh

      It appears that there is one (probably an 18″) next the sink. Based on the type of cabinet that is there. It’s just covered in a cabinet door.

  • jd

    Kind of cool. I can see this as a great DC home for someone that lives in another city or country.

  • The King Ad-Hoc

    +1000 for economic diversity.

    The price point is something even a low-earning individual or couple might be able to manage.

    • ClevelandDave

      The mortgage on a 250k unit at 5 percent for 30 years with taxes and insurance runs around 2,000 a month. So 24,000 a year. Mortgage payments should be no more than 30 percent of income. If you feel that 72,000 is a “low earning individual” well then…

      • Anon

        Sorry that number is totally wrong. 2,000 is the monthly payment on a $375,000 mortgage.

        • Me

          No. A $375k place at 5% down and 5% rate would be around 2400-2500/month when you factor in PMI. Then you have to add condo fees on top of that. My 375k mortgage at 4% is 2100 a month with taxes but I was able to get rid of PMI because the value of my condo went up.

          • Josh

            My condo was 419. With 5% down. I pay about 2,600 a month (mortgage, taxes, insurance, condo dues).

          • Anonomnom

            Ours was 400K, and payments were 2,600 w/ PMI. A year later though we were able to re-fi and loose the PMI (it is possible to do below 20% down if you hunt enough) and get everything down to 2000. (Disclosure: Extremely low condo fee helps us out)

        • HaileUnlikely

          These sorts of conversations usually work better when people say exactly what they mean rather than invoking a bunch of unspecified assumptions.
          At the best rate anybody is likely to get today on a 30-year fixed-rate loan, the actual mortgage payment (not taxes, homeowners insurance, PMI, or anything else, just the actual mortgage payment) on a $375,000 loan (I mean actual loan amount, whatever the purchase price) is $1,847. For the purpose of an close-enough-is-good-enough estimate, homeowners insurance on a unit like this will probably be $50/month or so. Property taxes will be about $250/month. An insanely low lowball estimate of condo fees would be $100. That has you at $2247/month already, lowballing the hell out of the condo fee and assuming no PMI.

  • AG

    Those don’t look very micro to me. Then again, i live in 390 sq feet and am kind of obsessed with all the tiny house shows on FYI. As long as they have decent natural light, the size seems fine. I just don’t know if I would pay that much if I could pay the same for slightly more space in a less swanky building. Ultra modern isn’t really my style anyways, but I will say, the thought of buying a really tiny space doesn’t seem as crazy at it used to.

  • jessicae223

    It is a little hard to believe that in 2015 a developer is trying to sell a condo project without a website…

    No mention of square footage anywhere?

  • chasscott

    Having lived for years in the tiny spaces of Europe, I couldn’t wait to get back to the larger living spaces here. And there is nothing like those “high quality finishes” overlaying the particle board beneath. Italian micro-spaces were the worst, all beautifully designed fixtures and furnishings that were meant to be looked at, not used. Very poor durability.

  • DC225

    The sales prices might be lower by DC standards, but you’re still looking at upwards of $700/sqf., which is substantially more expensive per sqf. than most normal, “adult size” condos.

    • Correct. I just did a quick search of condos under $300K in my area, and found over a dozen that were in the high $100s and mid-$200s and likely twice the size. Don’t get me wrong, I think these micro-units are cute and would make great rentals, but I think if I were in the market again to buy I’d want to maximize my space for the budget.

  • The OP Anon

    A lot of the microunits in this building are at the ground/basement level and right next to light shafts or retaining walls. Very little light will make it into those units and that’s the cheapest ones in the adverts
    These places are incredibly small for DC. They’d be a reasonable bargain if this were Manhattan. The developer did a lot of architectural jujitsu to fit this many units in such a small space. But that seems to be par for the course with almost every new condo building coming onto market right now. It’s incredibly depressing.


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