Are LeDroit Park and Bloomingdale DC’s Hottest Home Rehab Markets?

by Mark Wellborn

32 Bryant Street NW

In LeDroit Park and Bloomingdale, the sales market for homes with rehab potential is one the strongest and most active in the city. Over the past year, homes sold “as-is” (real estate parlance meaning “what you see is what you get”) are being scooped up after a short window on the market, renovated from top to bottom (and in some cases enlarged) and put back up for sale several months later.

While the swift nature of these transactions may seem surprising, it isn’t to those that have been following this niche market over the last year. And evidence of the trend is plentiful.

1927 2nd Street NW

On February 11th, a three-bedroom, one-bath home at 1927 2nd Street NW went under contract at $315,050 after just under a week on the market, and closed in June for $629,900 having been transformed into a four-bedroom, 3.5-bath property. In early March, 25 W Street NW went under contract for $350,000 and sold at the end of July for $615,000 after undergoing a similarly extensive rehab.

And, at the end of March, after three days on the market, a four-bedroom house down the street from 32 Bryant Street NW sold for $376,000; it went under contract last week for more than double that purchase price.

Mark Schacknies, a Bloomingdale resident and a partner at Walnut Street Development which redevelops a number of homes in the area, said that the properties the firm buys range in price from $350,000 to $450,000 and are severely dilapidated, many without even a kitchen or bathrooms.

“Homes that just need some TLC are not that common in this price point,” he told UrbanTurf. “We usually do complete gut renovations.” Schacknies said that the renovation process typically takes four to six months, and that costs range from $150,000 to $300,000. Walnut Street Development, which was founded by Robert R. Montagne, Jr. in 1997, has done six projects (including 32 Bryant Street NW) in the neighborhoods and has a few more coming up.

The downside for many “normal” home buyers interested in these properties is their ability, or lack thereof, to compete against investors and developers that bring all cash offers to the table. Properties in Freddie Mac’s First Look Initiative, which allows only owner occupants to submit offers within the first 15 days a property is on the market before opening up to investors, hit the market occasionally in LeDroit and Bloomingdale, but they are few and far between.

Needless to say, if you own a home that needs a good deal of work in one of these areas and are thinking of selling, you can be pretty sure that the property will draw a fair amount of interest.

See other articles related to: renovation, ledroit park, bloomingdale

This article originally published at http://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/are_ledroit_park_and_bloomingdale_dcs_hottest_home_rehab_markets/4221


  1. Allison said at 4:58 pm on Monday September 26, 2011:

    This article is pretty spot on. I’ve been looking in these two neighborhoods for the last six months. It seems as though any property in halfway decent shape (ripe for gradual renovation or the use of renovation financing) is snapped up within the first few days, with competition from all-cash buyers. Good for those small businesses, bad for us “normal” homebuyers who want to get into those neighborhoods for a more reasonable price.

  1. mona said at 7:35 am on Thursday September 29, 2011:

    It is a great neighborhood that few people know about. I brought 2yrs ago from a developer who had gutted a big corner house. I have lived on Cap Hill and Columbia Heights and this neighborhood beat those hands down. Not many people selling so it is hard to get in the neighborhood. Just went to gorgeous open house of mansion in Ledroit park just off the circle for 1.09 mill. If that house sells for even close to that price it will show where this neighborhood is going

  1. Mat said at 4:20 pm on Friday September 30, 2011:

    Just as sad though is what is happening to these houses. I’ve seen so many over the past two or three months get completed gutted. The finished product is certainly clean but in many cases the character has been absolutely destroyed, including all remains of the vestibule, even if the house was very well maintained but electricity and plumbing had not been updated.

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