Good News For Borderstan Housing Market?

by Borderstan.com May 20, 2010 at 4:07 pm 8 Comments

Good news for the Borderstan Housing Market, at least if you are a seller. (Photo:Luis Gomez)

Two housing-related Washington Business Journal stories caught our eye here at Borderstan:

The tax credit would be good news for first-time buyers, benefiting many of the young recently graduated living in the Dupont-Logan-U Street area. The rising prices are good for sellers in the neighborhood, especially if they purchased their house or condo before DC prices began to skyrocket around 2000. For example, in the late 1990s, you could buy a one-bedroom condo in the Logan Circle area for about $150,000–that same unit would go for about $400,000 now. (Trust me on this one.)

In DC (not including the suburbs), home prices increased 2.7 percent for the 12-month period ending March 31. This compares to the national average of 1.7 percent.

We would love to hear from some realtors here on DC home prices, especially in the Borderstan area. What’s the supply of condos like these days? Are there still enough people moving into the city who can afford $400,000 for less than 1,000 square feet of living space?

Any buyers and sellers out there with advice… stories to tell?

  • Mony

    400,000 gets you maybe 700-800 sq ft in most of borderstan

    • That’s what I would have guessed.

    • LT

      Without parking.

    • I looked at these 1st Quarter 2010 numbers for some local zips — 20009, 20005 and 20036. Can you explain that huge increase in the median sales price for 20009 (the bulk of this area, geographically)? At the same time, the median sales price in 2005 (south of Q Street) appeared to decline.


  • Stephanie

    Bought a 508 sq ft condo in Borderstan for 248,000 at the end of February…that was the most I could afford and the cheapest I could find that would still allow dogs!

  • Dave

    I have lived in Borderstan for 22 years and offer these observations. Back in the late 80’s, there was a brief run-up in real estate, followed by a collapse in the early to mid 90’s. During those years, you couldn’t give away a 1 BR condo in Dupont Circle. I think the reputation of the city was really suffering, due mostly to crime and the crack epidemic and the city being placed in receivership (under the Federally-appointed control board). In 1997, Rep. Norton helped push through a tax credit for first time home buyers in DC, and that brought some folks into the market (including yours truly), but DC real estate still remained extremely undervalued. 14th Street, and anything east, was still considered very sketchy.

    When Tony Williams became mayor, there was a renewed hope in DC and that is when more development started and prices took off. Like the rest of the country, things got overheated by 2004-2006, but now things have cooled off a bit.

    But Borderstan is still the most vibrant part of the city, and that is why real estate here will continue to be expensive. Folks who bought in Logan and Shaw back in the day were smart and willing to take a risk, and that has now paid off handsomely for them.

    Anyway, I love this city and this area and hope that it continues to improve. It is true that not everyone can afford to live here, but different areas will pick up the slack and they will develop their own energy. Who knows what things will look like after the next 22 year pass?


    • @Dave: That’s pretty much how I remember it, too. Thanks for the comment.


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