Real Estate

1216 Albemarle Road House Was The Work Of A Local Flipper, Now Asking Nearly $3M


1216 albemarle road house
Anyone who’s passed by 1216 Albermarle Road (between Westminster and Argyle Roads) over the past several months can attest to how much better it’s looking now than it looked for a good number of years there–but did you know the house was being built by neighbor Azad Ali, who’s renovated multiple local homes, for the purpose of selling? The New York Times has a fascinating look at the property today, including some background you might not know about the house, as well as Azad’s own success story. Says the Times:

In 2003, a woman had bought what was a modest 1965 cottage at that address, with plans to expand it and create her dream house, a redbrick Colonial McMansion. Many neighbors objected, complaining it would be out of character with surrounding homes, but the Landmarks Preservation Commission assented to the addition. After all, the existing house, while not a 19th-century charmer, had its own historic pedigree of sorts. It was one of three mid-century-style homes built next to one another on a corner lot where a grand Victorian had burned down in the 1950s.

But shortly after construction began, the woman’s contractor absconded with a six-figure deposit, and the project stalled behind decaying plywood fencing. After years of trying to sell it, for as much as $1.9 million in 2007, she was forced by the bank into a short sale. Mr. Ali paid a mere $218,000 in December 2012, though he was essentially buying it just for the land, since he tore down the house.

He then spent much of the next year fighting with the commission about what the house should look like. The commission initially wanted him to hue closer to the redbrick midcentury house, but he fought back.

“I’m trying to restore a vision of what was originally there, not some mistake made 50 years ago,” Mr. Ali said.

1216 albemarle road
While the consensus seems to be that this home is exponentially better than the fenced lot and rotting plywood it replaced, we aren’t the only ones unsure about the price–Azad and Corcoran’s Laura Rozos are now asking $2.975 million for the 4 bedroom, 3.5 bath home. That’s $775,000 more than 147 Rugby Road, the most expensive home ever sold in the area, which has 7 beds, 4.5 baths, and lots of original details.

“It still has the look and feel of those homes,” Rozos tells the Times of 1216 as compared to surrounding properties, “but it’s totally modern, which is why we think it commands a premium price.”

And we get it–whether or not they need a central vacuuming system or sidewalks with radiant heat (good news, neighbors who suffered through icy walks to the train this winter!), prospective buyers will know they won’t have all the problems they might encounter with an older home. It will be easier to heat, and it’s not like you’ll have to replace the boiler or electrical right off the bat.

All of this is to say, the house looks beautiful, we’re so glad someone finally did something with it, Azad’s vision turned out beautifully, he deserves his success, and the whole, very entertaining story is worth a read if you haven’t given it one already. Taking all that into account, do the home’s special features make it worth nearly $3 million?

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  1. 2MM Tops. The listed square footage is off by a factor of two – maybe that’s how they came up with the asking price.

  2. The pricing for this house doesn’t make any sense at all. The layout of the property is awkward, it’s on a smaller plot of land with a small garden and I agree it is better to look at than before but it certainly doesn’t command a higher premium over the historic houses. I don’t understand how they got to that square footage when the rooms all look quite small and there is only three floors including the basement/1st floor. It is overpriced and I hope it sells for a more reasonable amount.

  3. It just might get the 3 million. A neighbor’s house just sold for what I thought what was kind of a ridiculously high price. I spoke to the agent. “It’s the market.” There aren’t that many houses on the market, and this neighborhood is wonderful. People are willing to “overpay” because they’ll be here for 30 years and the overpayment kind of disappears.

  4. No, they won’t get anywhere near this price. First, even at the listed square footage of 4,122sf, the ask is $721/sf. Nothing in this neighborhood has ever sold for anything close to that. Second, as noted above, it looks like the square footage is GROSSLY exaggerated based on the floorplans. Third, this “classy” McMansion style interior does not merit a premium price. Quite the opposite actually. This will probably sell for around $1.8, and the sellers should count themselves lucky if they get that. Is it an improvement over the hot mess that’s been there? Sure. But let’s keep this at least vaguely reality-based, shall we?

  5. Laura Rozos always asks way too much for every house she’s trying to sell. What’s wrong with her?

  6. Even if you don’t agree with the price, you should understand that agents don’t come up with the price on their own. More often then not, sellers are the ones who push for higher prices. Brokers have more interest in a market price, so the property moves more quickly.

  7. ah this 3 million dollar house… I admit the did seem to do a really nice job on the renovation and making the home fit back into the area. But 3 Million? I’m interested to see what the market will bear…

  8. I don’t follow the market for houses but I do follow the one for apartments in this neighborhood and it’s clear this neighborhood is ‘hot’ right now. Seems like most of the the co-ops are going for well above ask and so successive listings have been getting priced higher right from the start. Maybe this is true for houses as well.

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