Alexander Clark Real Estate

‘The Front Steps’: You Choose What $1.7M Buys In The Richmond

It’s time for a game, but don’t panic: The rules are simple, and there’s absolutely no way to lose.

First, pretend you’ve got just about $1.71 million burning a hole in your pocket, and you must use it to buy real estate in the Richmond. We’ll pause to let the sudden sense of power wash over you.

Now imagine you’ve got three options. All of these are real properties that actually have sold in the neighborhood over the past 18 months, and all of them are just about in your price range.

All you have to do is decide which one you like best. There are no prizes in this game (remember, these places already sold to someone else)–but you might have the satisfaction of good taste, which presumably is its own reward.

Ready? Go.

2732 Clement Street

This one just closed less than two weeks ago, and by way of disclosure we should mention that the whole reason we know about it is because we represented the buyer.

This was/is a two bed, two bath condo on top of a two-unit building, with over 1,500 square feet, and it closed for just a little bit over $1.71M. City records date this place to 1924.

The ad pushed the hardwood floors, quartz counters, fireplace, built-ins, and plum tree garden, as well as unspecified “period details,” but personally we’re always big suckers for a separate dining room with French doors. Of course, you’re the imaginary buyer here, so take a glance and tell us what you like about it:

855 41st Avenue

This one we didn’t work on ourselves, it’s just an interesting case, one that sold a couple of months ago for a little bit less–$1.68M.

This is just about the exact same size as the previous offering and was built within a few years of it, but it packs in three beds instead of two, and of course rather than a condo this is a full, single-family house.

But they marketed this as a “cosmetic fixer.” What does that mean? Well, there’s nothing structurally wrong with the old place really, it just needs some touching up, and of course the layouts and aesthetic choices are at this point pretty old-fashioned.

To be honest though, that’s part of what makes it appealing for us. Sure, that wallpaper definitely needs to go at this point, but at the same time we’ve seen so many glacial all-white interiors at this point that any change of pace is refreshing.

So what’s the better bargain, the old school condo or the fixer house? OR, would you prefer what’s behind door number three?

44 Cook Street

This one was a bargain at $1.67M in early 2021. And for that price, you, the proud (hypothetical) buyer get…absolutely nothing.

That’s right, this is an undeveloped parcel–quite a twist, right?

Now we know what you’re thinking, why would anyone pick this over the previous two options? After all those are both homes that, you know, actually exist?

Well, in this case it’s all about the long game, because 44 Cook came packed with plans for a “two-unit luxury condo development” more than four times the size of these other homes, and on top of that it’s a bargain, as the seller picked this place up for $3 million previously.

So ultimately this is the much better deal…except of course you have to do it all yourself. Until then–well, you might be able to treat it as a private park, but that’s about it.


So what’ll it be: the condo, the fixer, or the dream of things to come? Let us know what you’d go in for if it was in your hands–and maybe some day it will be.

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