I was looking through some old posts on here and came across one from November 2006 by Synthetik titled God Save the Queen. In it, he linked to an Aubrey Cohen piece about a developer converting two apartment buildings on lower Queen Anne to condos.
Let’s check in and see how those conversions are doing, two years later…
From the article:
The Pittsburgh, a brick-and-stone building at 125 Warren Ave., dates to 1907. It has plenty of character, including bay windows, stone balconies, high ceilings, wide moldings, fireplaces and built-in cabinets. But the windows are old, the radiator heating system shot and the place generally down at the heels.
Still, Rankin expects to start selling the Pittsburgh’s 31 condos in February or March .
First off, it would appear that the conversion took a little longer than the developer had hoped. The first sales in the Pittsburgh didn’t close until July and August 2007. If July 2007 rings a bell to you, that might be because it was the peak month for home prices in the Seattle area. Whoops.
Two years later, King County Records indicate that 45% of the 31 units in the Pittsburgh remain unsold.
Pioneer already has applied that model across the street from the Pittsburgh, selling 34 condos in the Queen’s Court building, which dates to 1930.
J.D. Johnson, 86, has lived in the Queen’s Court for about 30 years and spent the 20 before that in a nearby apartment building.
The developers bought Johnson’s apartment and will continue to rent it to him for $300 a month, Rankin said. … But nearly all the other renters left. Although several expressed interest in buying in the building, just two did. Rankin said only a couple of Pittsburgh renters considered buying. Most just can’t afford the condos.
Queen’s Court got a slight jump on the peak, selling its first units in December 2006. However, to date, King County Records indicate that 20 of the complex’s 34 units (59%) are still held by the developer.
Five units in Queen’s Court are currently on the MLS, (4 by the developer and 1 by a previous buyer), with days on market ranging between 89 and 158 (over 5 months). Three units at the Pittsburgh are on the market (all developer-owned), with days on market ranging between 45 and 157.
Between the two projects on Warren Street, less than half the units have sold. At least one unit in each building is currently listed for rent on Craigslist, however it does not appear that Synthetik’s prediction that “these units will “repartment” themselves less than one year after they’re finished” came true. Of course from the look of things, they may have been financially better of if they had. Now it’s probably too late. Can you even “repartment” a complex where roughly half of the units have already sold?
MUST WANT TO LIVE IN QUIET BLDG
Yeah, when half the units around you are vacant, I guess that would tend to be pretty quiet.