Photos Now up for Grand but Decayed Brownstone Asking $2.75 Million in Fort Greene

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If you’re curious, photos are now online for the impressive but structurally unsound brownstone at 6 South Oxford Street. It was a HOTD in April; the ask is $2,750,000. At the time, commenter Pierre de Taille said the stairs are “completely rotted” and the plaster details that are left “aren’t salvageable given the extent of water damage.” Not only does the roof have a hole in it, but reportedly some beams on various floors have collapsed. It will need “everything new,” including “structural walls,” in his opinion. Apparently, it’s also an SRO. Kudos to the brokers for putting up photos. Click through to the listing to see the grand entrance hall and an unusual mantel. Does anyone have experience rebuilding houses that have been open to the elements?

6 South Oxford Street [Douglas Elliman] GMAP

14 Comment

  • Wow, what a job that would be, but for the right person; someone with that rare ability to see beyond what is, to what it could be, it would be magnificent. There’s still a lot to work with, worst case scenario, you document everything that can’t be salvaged, like some of that plaster ceiling moulding, and you recreate it. There’s room here to keep/replace detail, and still have a modern house. *ALL* it takes is vision, a good architect, a fine crew that knows what they are doing, not flipper grade wreckorators, a lot of patience, and a BIG pile of money. There seems to be a lot of that around, the money, that is – from where I have no idea, so sooner or later, the right person will come along.

  • Cost of House = $$$
    Cost of Renovation = $$$$
    Cost of Sanity = Priceless

  • You buy this at ask for 2.75M, you spend 1.2M on renovation/restoration. You got a 5million dollar house. It doesn’t make sense to buy this and spend a year + in renovation when you can get a move in ready house.

    How are brokers pricing these houses? I think they just put numbers in a hat and pick.

    • If someone is very patient, and doesn’t have to rush into a new home, ie, someone who is not selling the old home for this one, it’s quite worth a year’s wait. In the end, they have a brand new home in an old brownstone facade, hopefully from my perspective, with some original detail, and then the modern amenities like central air and fancy kitchens and baths that make people happy. Unless we have an apocalypse, I don’t see Fort Greene’s real estate futures going down, so in the long run, this could be quite the place.

      I’m looking at this purely from a theoretical perspective. Big money like this is fantasy land for me, so I feel free to just talk. It’s the kind of project I would love, if I had unlimited funds.

      • MM, I too think this would be a great project. But the asking price is ridiculous considering that the house has to practically be rebuilt.
        And if someone wants to re-create the details, I take back my 1.2M renovation cost….1.5M.
        People buy fixer uppers because after all is said and done (cost of house, cost of renovation, and time on renovation), it’s a better value. But not in this case.

        And first glance at the listing, I mised it’s an SRO with no mention of Cert of No Harassment….ChaCHING…that’s the sound of more money falling out of the owners’ pockets.

  • First off I agree with Montrose this place has great potential. the details present are quite gorgeous. Sadly it has bad bones according to the photos. The Five things this property has going for it is, it 1) off a lovely park, next to a great 2) High School – Bk Tech, 3) Very close to a hospital 4) On a beautiful block with other amazing properties, 5) Pretty much in a quiet portion of the downtown BK – Super Convenient.

    Now on the flip side going by the photos and Pierre de Taille insider info, there would probably not be very worth saving here and everything would have to be documented and recreated. Given the extensive water damaged and the sagging beams and floors everything would need to be removed to tackle the structural issues, and rebuilt, – sadly this could end up being a gut reno. The floors look like they would have been amazing, but are probably rotted judging by the dilapidated beams. So the question I would pose to everyone is if you essentially have to rebuild the house both outside and inside, what are you actually purchasing beyond the land and a headache with great potential ( Just kidding, but partially serious). SRO’s — Yikes :-(

    • You and halvewit are right, of course. And it is grossly overpriced. Like I said, I’m just talking. It COULD be done, but yeah, it’s the definition of money pit. That said, I still hope someone does take it on.

      • Having someone who cares about protecting the integrity of what this house was ie; loving hands would def. be the most ideal situation, but I think this is a moment in which buyers really can show these brokers who really dictates these prices. So I hope a long wait pushes the price down on this property. I’m tired of these brokers pushing buyers around with this nonsense about lack of inventory driving this mass hysteria. Resulting in people settling for crap properties and at absurd prices. Property value should be gauged on an individual basis just because my neighbors property which gorgeous and a turn key property Everyone smell the roses and wise up to your inner power over this market.

  • I’ve seen this kind of renovation done in London where houses are bought solely on the basis of their location and sometimes even perfectly good houses are gutted because the new owners are so rich. My guess is that this would require a total interior demo, inserting a new structural steel envelope and starting over from scratch. It’s just not worthwhile to try to retain what’s remaining, especially if it left you uncertain whether you’d addressed the structural issues sufficiently. Maybe the bannister and stair spindles could be removed and reinstalled. Ditto fireplaces , pocket doors etc. But forget the plasterwork — that would likely need to be recreated. Hey, I hope there’s someone out there with deep enough pockets. But the cost of the house doesn’t offer enough discount to reflect the cost of the rebuild, IMHO.

  • I’m an architect and I converted my own house on that block of South Oxford St from an SRO wreck to a finished home. The SRO can be cured if you are willing to spend some time. When researching a Letter of non Harassment they go back to tenants of the last 3 years (they find them through phone and electric records). That letter on an un-occupied building would take anywhere from 3 months to a year to procure. The other violations could also be cured. Again time. figure a year before construction can legally begin. Then another year till an end user could move in. I’d budget 1.250-1.500 mil based on the condition and work required to bring the house back to a nice (not super high end) home. In todays market in that location I wouldn’t be shocked to see a 3.75-4.00 Mil sale of the finished project at current prices of a beautiful finished house. So how much is your time worth and where do you see the value of Ft. Green, park block, brownstones going? Its an end user purchase for someone who really wants to be in that house and location.

    • I’m so glad there’s a licensed architect in the room who can put the cost in perspective here. Thank Andrix :-)
      This property would hopefully given the extent of the work, end up in an end user’s hands. Especially with that kind of budget.

    • @ Andrix. I would love to hear about your experience. Thinking about doing something similar and, given that this is an expensive, lengthy, arduous process, I would really appreciate any tips from someone who’s been down a similar path. Currently on Cumberland, looking around in the surrounding blocks. Please let me know if you’d be willing to entertain a few questions offline. Thanks!