This week, we’re working with Jimmy, a 27 year-old law student who is about to graduate and join a corporate DC firm with a starting salary of $160,000. Jimmy has excellent credit with a FICO score of 781, and has $140,000 in the bank for a down payment. He is in the fortunate position of graduating without any student loan debt. Given these factors, a loan for his target price of $450,000 to $550,000 (less his down payment) should not be a problem.
Jimmy is looking for a two-bedroom, two-bath unit and would prefer something in the Dupont/Logan area but is willing to consider other neighborhoods with Metro access. He doesn’t want to have to do any renovations other than minor decorating updates, and he also wants something with plenty of windows and natural light. He doesn’t need parking, but would welcome it if it is available in in his price range. Similarly, he would love a unit that has a 24/7 concierge, given the long hours he will soon be working.
1806 Riggs Place NW, #2
Jimmy’s biggest concern, however, is what he might do with the unit if he leaves DC and the market is not ripe to sell. He would like the option to rent it out, but is also looking for something that will eventually have strong resale value. So, we’ll be paying special attention to those issues with the properties we recommend.
Our first option for Jimmy is 1806 Riggs Place NW, #2. This is a two-unit building on a relatively quiet one-way street, and what it lacks (a front desk) it more than makes up for with size and light. The 1,300 square-foot two-bedroom unit features a number of fireplaces and skylights, central air conditioning, and a long, spacious living and dining area. The $275/month condo fee includes heat, electricity, water, and gas, and if Jimmy wants to rent in the future, the fact that this is a pet-friendly condo will open up his pool of available renters. The space and Dupont location comes at a price, though—1806 Riggs is on the market for $599,000, which Jimmy can afford, but is more than he wants to pay.
The second choice is 2020 12th Street NW, Unit 311. This two-bedroom, two-bath condo is further north than Jimmy had originally intended, located just off the U Street Corridor. It is, however, less than 500 feet from the Yellow and Green Lines of the U Street/Cardozo Metro station. The 1,013 square-foot loft space was built just five years ago, and the living area has a large set of windows that lead out to a balcony. The listing price includes a parking space, and there is a doorman for the building, though not a concierge like Jimmy prefers. Unit 311 is listed for $535,000, but carries a steep $549 monthly condo fee.
2020 12th Street NW, Unit 311
Our final option for Jimmy is 1618 11th Street NW, Unit 103. This affordable 1,050 square-foot two bedroom in Logan Circle was built in 2008. It is the lowest priced option we feature, but it has top-of-the-line finishes and a chef’s kitchen with a Viking appliance package. Parking is available (for an additional fee), the building is pet friendly, but there is no concierge or doorman. This unit is a first-floor condo, so it would not have as much natural light as the top floor option on Riggs or the loft on U Street. The $489,850 asking price tag, though, may be enticing for Jimmy.
Given these three choices, where should Jimmy put in his offer?
This article originally published at http://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/dc_buyer_soon-to-graduate_law_student_looking_for_first_home/2061
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