Thursday, January 2, 2014

The $2M+ Fixer-Upper is Alive & Well: 390 Sterling Place

Boy, it was just 12 months ago that owners of 4-story renovated townhomes in Prospect Heights were upbeat about the prospect of their house being worth as much as $2.5M, or even a little more.  Now a $2.3M fixer-upper closer to Crown Heights lasts barely a month on the market, and we'd venture to guess the contract is above asking price.  But what do we know?

390 Sterling Place is a 2-Family that was "looking for a new owner to bring her back to the majesty" of its original architect, and "awaits your thorough renovation."  Why might someone pay well over $2M for a fixer-upper that's not in Park Slope?  Did 213 Prospect Place not already do this at the end of 2012?  Heck, if a barely-on-the-market estate sale fixer-upper around the corner at 400 Park Place can get up towards $2.2M with nothing more than a "For Sale" sign in the window, imagine what shiny Corcoran pics will do for 390 Sterling Place.  You'd be hard-pressed to find a room with more stunning wood work than this...

That's if you go for that kind of thing.  We only get 2 other pics of the inside, but that's all it takes in this market.  No wonder houses this nice are breaking records in Bed-Stuy these days, but still doing it under $2M.  Finished houses in Prospect Heights go for well over $2.5M, as handfuls of sales in 2013 demonstrated.  Even on this Crown Heights edge of the small neighborhood that is Prospect Heights, another gem a few houses down like 398 Sterling Place didn't have too much trouble.  390 Sterling Place is wide enough, deep enough, on an extra-deep lot... and cleans up just nice enough.

And to think, people were probably hesitant to pay that $1.3M price tag the owner did back in 2004.  Ten years and ten hundred grand later, here we are.

Pro's:  curb appeal, stunning original details, close to the park, full-sized 4-story, still beats many deals in the Slope

Con's:  lots of work to be done, gone already, certainly isn't cheap, takes deep pockets to fund acquisition and renovation of a landmarked gem like this

Ideally:  it's looking like a best of breed from where we're sitting, but playing ball in the top tier and even 2nd tier neighborhoods of Brooklyn takes a lot more money than it used to even last year

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