Comparables: Edgewater

You certainly get a lot of space at 1328 W Elmdale, Unit 2E. The 2 bedroom, 2 bath unit in what you would probably call a craftsman style six-flat, really has six rooms, plus a sunporch off the living room; in total probably 1400+ sq ft. When the building converted to condo, the units were apparently sold as is, and each buyer did his/her own thing. As a result, the common areas remain in their rental condition, which is, actually, pretty beat — although of course there’s great potential there, starting with the mosaic tile floor in the lobby. It’s offered by Angela Mueller of Century 21 Elm at $349.000, including a parking space. It’s been on the market for more than a month, and the asking price has been reduced. 2005 taxes were $3,226, and the monthly assesment is $343.

The rehab here was done reasonably well — the floors are handsomely redone, the kitchen has the usual bells and whistles, with the bonus of a separate under-the-counter wine cooler — and the baths are what you would expect for rehab of a vintage facility.

Design purists may have a problem with the decorative fireplace in the living room. These are sort of ubiquitous in buildings of this age, and they’re almost never a real asset. Developers would probably be best off eliminating them during the rehab. On the other hand, buildings of this vintage also often have real stained glass windows, and there are two nice ones here; of course they flank the awful fireplace. Another problem: to accommodate the new HVAC and recessed lighting, the ceilings in the living room are dropped about six inches. Although they’re still over nine feet, and although you’ve got to credit the developer with the idea of recycling the crown moldings on the new ceiling surface, the result looks a little sloppy. Similarly, the ceiling of the adjacent sunroom [because the HVAC wasn’t extended in here, it’s at its original height] also still seems to need some finish work done. Finally, although there’s a lot of space, you wonder if the developer used an architect. The back of the apartment is planned strangely; you would think the raw square footage could have been apportioned better between the large family room and small master bedroom, and the [heated] back porch is treated like an afterthought, when it could probably have been made part of the kitchen.

This is a very attractive block, and it’s far enough east of Senn High that you wouldn’t have quite as much of the weirdness [vandalism and noise, mostly, but other, more serious, gang-related stuff] that you find around most high schools.

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