Friday, November 30, 2012

Crown Heights Under $700K: 1148 Sterling Place

Old-school brokers swear by age-old standard notions like "the fall buying season".  But in the 21st Century, things move at a slightly different pace than the dinosaurs of old media can keep up with.  Even the 2nd worst storm in US history that left millions without power couldn't stop a $2.5M Park Slope listing from going in contract in a matter of weeks.  Yet the day before "Frankenstorm" Sandy (and some weeks before it showed up on Streeteasy) we saw this nifty little property at 1148 Sterling Place.  That's right, before it listed for $725K, Platinum Members got the early heads up on it.  Another broker who also has the open listing, Elliot Nicks, showed it to us at the asking price of $679K.  Elliot even insisted today that price still gets a deal done.  Even as tenants were moving out last month, Platinum Members got to explore everything this house has to offer. 

We trust Elliot and his take on the market.  We've seen him navigate tricky deals and come through with happy clients.  So when he told us this house was worth a look, it was a no-brainer.  There's original wainscoting, moldings, built-in's, and a stained-glass skylight.  There's easily-removable carpet covering up (and protecting) the original parquet wood floors with herringbone patterns.  The conversion to gas heat has already been done, which is tens of thousands in deferred maintenance that you don't have to blow upon purchasing like you have to with other properties.  Spend that money on personalizing your kitchens and baths instead.  Sure, there's some asbestos in the basement - as comes with many of these homes - but the owner will remedy that for you prior to closing.  Again, more money to keep in your pocket to spiff-up the cosmetic rough edges.

The rest is a brownstone that's almost 20' wide, a way-healthy 55' deep, on an extra-deep 127' lot - giving you plenty of backyard and FAR to play with.  A 2-Family fixer-upper for under $700K in Crown Heights is a good look that we've seen before.  They don't last long.  It's easy to say, "Too far east."  But it's hard to find much better for this price or less.  And if you really know your Brooklyn, you can stand on this block and see how prime this location just off Eastern Parkway, around the corner from a huge local park & the Children's Museum, is destined to be over time.  Some claim to be your neighbor, but then they can't even spell "Nostrand Avenue" correctly:

Real recognize real.  Considering the speed with which prices are sweeping east across Bed-Stuy, parts of Crown Heights are still undervalued in our opinion.  Brooklyn remains misunderstood, but we'll cover that another time...

Pro's:  price, value, curb appeal, original details, gas conversion already done, available under $700K now

Con's:  quirky shape, too far east for some, lots of updates to do

Ideally:  another great look at a condo alternative.  Buy now, thank us later.

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