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A Visit to the Firehouse #25 Penthouse

By October 5, 2010

Firehouse #25

Everyone I bump into someone looking for a condo on Capitol Hill I tell them to check out unit #12 at 1406 Harvard Ave, also known as Firehouse #25. The reason I’m so quick to recommend it is its screaming value, 2,307 square feet for $425k. Down nearly $200k; it first hit the market for $612k this April. And of course, I have a weakness for exposed brick, tall ceilings and vintage buildings in the Pike-Pine corridor.

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Now there must be some sort of catch right? This is the same place that was on the market for $1.2 million back in spring of 2007. And while the market has dipped since 2007, it has not dipped that much!

The catch is that this unit has seen much better days. To get a sense of the before and after, check out these listing photos from 3 years ago and compare them to the listing photos today. And here are the photos I took when I finally visited the place in August with an agent who shares my fascination with condos.

Gone are the fancy light fixtures, stainless steel appliances (including wine fridge), the vintage belt fans, the fancy shower, the 1,200 bottle wine cellar racks…

What’s left is the very outdated kitchen style, worn floors and lots of wear and tear.

Even after visiting the place I still think this is a very unique space and a steal at the current price. What makes it special?

But you’ll need to do some work:

Actually if I bought it, I’d just gut the whole place and start from scratch. I guess that’s why it is $425k and there haven’t been any takers yet. Or maybe its the what looks like water damage in the common areas.

I’m a real estate broker and the publisher of Urbnlivn. I love lofts, floating homes, new construction and mid-century moderns but will help you buy or sell just about anything.

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