When the Invisible Hand smites the stupid

Sitting on Top
Originally uploaded by In Shaw

I can’t remember actually seeing anyone living here, but I was told by neighbors that 1522 3rd St NW had a handyman guy trying to fix it up for rent. According to the DC property tax records is US BANK NATIONAL ASSOCIATION TRUSTEE took possession of this property 1/27/2010 for $224,336. Pretty cheap. I smell a foreclosure.
As far as I can tell, and if anyone knows more they are more than welcomed to correct me (please initial your comments), but this house never sold to a actual person with the will to move in or the smarts/ability to rent it out to people who would pay money to live there.
Now I figure the reason why stupid people with money, or access to credit, throw these ugly things on top is to increase the square footage to get a higher price. But here is the problem and the smiting of the Invisible Hand, say you take a 1,000 sqft house and add a 500 sq ft pop up. On paper this would logically put the house in the 1,500 group getting 1,500 sq ft prices. However, a buyer, provided they aren’t legally blind, will judge this ugly 1,500 sq ft house against 1,500 sq ft houses that were either built as 1,500 sq ft houses or had more timeless aesthetically pleasing additions. So there would be a discount for the ugly. This discount would make the “improvements” a negative investment.

Please don’t mention Historic Districts because the adding of the ugly happens everywhere, in the TC with townhomes and Hyattsville with bungalows (one such on East-West Hwy comes to mind). Besides, I hate history being prostituted for aesthetics.

2 thoughts on “When the Invisible Hand smites the stupid”

  1. Thanks for this update! Very interesting that a bank has taken over this house. Normally, I agree on the negative value of pop-ups. However, I think this one isn't too ugly. I talked last year to a realtor who owned this property because her alarm on the house was going off for like two days! Who knows why in the world she never rented it out. Excited to see who buys and moves in. This block of 3rd St has great neighbors so I'm excited to see. I'm gonna cross post this on the BACA blog. Thanks!

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