This massive Greek Revival has an interesting pedigree. The house, at 271 Hicks Street, dates back at least to 1846. And since 1951 it’s been home to the family of architect Herbert Kaufman, a key member of the preservationist group that led to Brooklyn Heights becoming the city’s first historic district.
You might expect a painstakingly preserved home from such a figure, but that’s not the case here. A good deal of original detail is missing from the house, and it looks like it may need some updating.
There’s a lot of space to play with here, though. The sprawling house is 24 feet wide and 45 feet deep, with a fifth story that was added to the original four in the late 1800s.
The house currently is laid out as an owner’s triplex with floor-through rentals on the top two floors. That’s according to the listing, from Joan Goldberg at Brown Harris Stevens. The owner’s kitchen is small, located in a corner of an extension on the parlor floor.
Said parlor has a pair of impressive black-marble Greek Revival fireplaces, but not much else in the way of original detail. Is that a popcorn ceiling we see? This mid-20th-century treatment has fallen out of fashion (and may contain asbestos, which can be expensive to remediate).
Worth noting are the terraces on two floors. These appear to be modernized “tea porches,” a hallmark of mid-19th century design that survives in a few Heights homes — and are not infrequently enclosed and turned into kitchens.
There’s also a studio in an extension on the garden floor. With its big slanting glass roof, it could be useful for a greenhouse, artist’s studio or the like.
All told, it could be a stunner, given vision and some work. And it’s a large, historic brownstone in prime Brooklyn Heights.
Given all that, do you think the ask of $6.5 million is a bit high, or right on target?
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