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Best Real Estate Resurrection of 2010: 425 Mass

by UrbanTurf Staff

UrbanTurf is taking a week-long look back at the best that DC’s residential real estate market had to offer in 2010. From the best deals to the best renovations to, of course, the best listings, we believe we have sussed out the cream of the crop.


Best Real Estate Resurrection of 2010: 425 Mass: Figure 1
425 Mass, the first tower of the former Dumont

425 Mass is kind of the Robert Downey, Jr. of the DC condo/apartment market. Like the actor, the project basically fell flat on its face before picking itself up and re-entering the residential market with a bang.

Here is a quick history of 425 Mass. The two-tower, 559-unit Mount Vernon Square development (consisting of 425 Massachusetts Avenue NW and 401 Massachusetts Avenue NW) was originally planned as a condominium called The Dumont, but as the real estate market slowed in 2008, the project ran into trouble selling units. Eventually the lenders took possession of the property, and deposits were returned to all would-be buyers. The Washington Post wrote a scathing article about the property entitled A Towering Disappointment, and The Dumont became a local symbol of the bruised real estate market. Over the course of 2009 and into 2010, real estate watchers and neighborhood residents wondered about the fate of the building, which was sitting locked and empty while behind the scenes the bank and investors weighed their options.

In March, there was finally news: Chicago-based Equity Residential would acquire the property and rent the units as Class A apartments. In short order, the company re-christened 425 Mass and began leasing units in April. Despite skepticism that it would be able to charge the rents it was asking (studios from $1,785, one-bedrooms from $2,175), in July word came that in fact the building had been filling up quickly. Specifically, it had signed leases with 182 new tenants within its first 90 days — roughly 60 leases per month.

Best Real Estate Resurrection of 2010: 425 Mass: Figure 2
401 Mass

In October, UrbanTurf learned that the second tower of the project, 401 Mass, would start lease ups ahead of schedule based on the fact that the first building at 425 Massachusetts Avenue had already leased 50 percent of its 559 units.

“425 Mass Apartments is leasing at record pace,” Equity Residential’s Robert Grealy stated in a press release. “Because of the tremendous success of the community, we are opening the second tower well ahead of schedule.”

The success continues. Presently, 310 of the 559 units at the two towers have been leased and since 401 Mass started leasing in October, the one-bedrooms and studios have been filling up quickly. Not bad for a couple of buildings that stood empty just a year ago.

Previous Best Of 2010 entries:

See other articles related to: mount vernon triangle, dclofts, best of 2010, 425 mass

This article originally published at http://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/best_real_estate_resurrection_of_2010_425_mass/2779

5 Comments

  1. Tom A. said at 10:24 pm on Friday December 17, 2010:
    Yeah for stupid people willing to pay WAY too much rent in a neighborhood where the nice gym that opened decided the neighborhood was too "transitional" and closed it doors after only a year of operation!
  1. Uh-uh said at 10:27 pm on Friday December 17, 2010:
    Tom - That nice gym (Results) is being replaced by an even nicer gym (VIDA).
  1. Scott said at 3:37 pm on Saturday December 18, 2010:
    Uh-uh That gym will be closed for about a year for renovations.
  1. Prince said at 6:21 pm on Saturday December 18, 2010:
    the Robert Downey, Jr. of the DC condo/apartment?? How corny is that? For the broke dude who thinks the rent is high? No, idiot..the rent is cheap. One bedroom for $2100 for new constructed high end building for that area is very cheap.
  1. sandra said at 7:37 pm on Saturday December 18, 2010:
    I thought the downey Jr. reference was hilarious!

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