Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Renovated Frame House Coming to Fort Greene North: 179 Park Avenue

When they asked us if a totally renovated frame house on Park Avenue on the northern edge of Fort Greene could command a million dollars, we said it's certainly worth a try.  The neighborhood's not for everyone, but it certainly is hip (and historic!).  After seeing the work that The Stuyvesant Group did on places like 624 Greene Avenue and others, we figured they could put the right touch on the place.  We got an early look at 179 Park Avenue, a 2-Family house coming out soon asking $999K that we're told is having an open house this weekend.  The location for this frame house is a tweener between Fort Greene proper to the south, the rapidly developing Navy Yard area (some call it Wallabout), and just a stone's throw away from Williamsburg.  With Myrtle Avenue being the vibrant commercial stretch up the hill, spots popping up like Brooklyn Roasting Company on Flushing around the corner...

You can squint your eyes and forget you're not in Williamsburg, where - oh, by the way - condos fetch $1,200/sqft with hefty maintenance fees.  But this 2-Family condo alternative is coming in at $593/sqft, less than half that.  And brownstone condo conversions are already selling higher than that on Dean and NY Avenue "deep" in Crown Heights, as high as $630/sqft.  Condos north of Myrtle closer to Pratt are selling for over $730/sqft.  So let's see what a million gets you for a townhouse over on Park Avenue...

We see this place having potential as a hipster Batcave and/or a condo alternative for anyone who wants a yard at condo prices.  It's a way better value than an unrenovated house on the same block asking $700K.  If you want to be in striking distance of Fort Greene, but not pay $1,000/sqft for a condo with $1,000+ maintenance fees or pay $2M+ for a townhouse shell, then this house might be worth a look.  Going north of Myrtle isn't for everyone, but it ain't cheap either.  Corcoran got $997K for another small frame house at 47 Cumberland Street last month, north of the BQE.  Corcoran also got $1.358M last month for 161 Washington Avenue north of Myrtle after listing closer to that price in April and wanting as much as $1.55M by the end of the summer.  Corcoran also got $1.475M in September for the 15' wide "bring your contractor" special at 86 Vanderbilt Avenue north of Myrtle.  Maybe you missed the lovely 13' wide brick house at 141A Washington Avenue closing this month for $1.375M.  Obviously, the biggest drawback of 179 Park Avenue is the BQE overpassing on stilts right out the front window.  There's no getting around that.  We were surprised at how little street noise makes it into the house, even during rush hour.  So if that's not a deal breaker, getting an owner's duplex with a yard and rental income could be clutch.

Especially when you get all the fixin's fully renovated inside and out with sleek finishes, nice floors, washer/dryer in the basement, and central A/C in the house!  At this price you could take over the whole house or even FHA buyers can rock it out in the 3BR & 2.5 bath duplex and get a nice stream of income from the garden rental.

Time to see what this Wallabout market is all about!

Pro's:  totally renovated, central A/C, washer/dryer, condo alternative with a yard and a deck, price per squarefoot, might happen under a million

Con's:  off the beaten path, curb appeal isn't everyone's taste, modest 18' x 33' size, BQE is tragically close by

Ideally:  a hipster hide-out in the making or a condo alternative for buyers who wanna be in striking distance of prime Fort Greene

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