Sold in Belmont: All I Want for Christmas is a Million-Dollar House

Photo: 14 Watson Rd. sold for nearly a quarter of million dollars over its assessed value.

A weekly recap of residential properties sold in the past seven-plus days in the “Town of Homes:

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206 School St., Single family (1925). Sold: $1,098,000.

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140 Watson Rd., Brick Colonial (1940). Sold: $1,020,000.

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31 Amherst Rd., Two-level ranch (1954). Sold: $1,025,000.

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200 Rutledge Rd., Garrison Colonial (1940). Sold: $1,580,000.

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4 Waterhouse Rd., Center-entrance Colonial (1938). Sold: $685,750.

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29 Cowdin St., Colonial (1940). Sold: $724,000.

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18 Lodge Rd., English Tudor Colonial (1935). Sold: $710,000.

140 Watson Rd., Brick Colonial (1940). Sold: $1,020,000. Listed at $1,050,000,. Living area: 2,277 sq.-ft. 8 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 2.5 baths. On the market: 57 days.

31 Amherst Rd., Two-level ranch (1954). Sold: $1,025,000. Listed at $1,125,000. Living area: 2,347 sq.-ft. 6 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 3 baths. On the market: 117 days.

18 Lodge Rd., English Tudor Colonial (1935). Sold: $710,000. Listed at $755,000. Living area:  1,783 sq.-ft. 7 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 1.5 baths. On the market: 93 days.

4 Waterhouse Rd., Center-entrance Colonial (1938). Sold: $685,750. Listed at $850,000. Living area: 1,742 sq.-ft. 7 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 1.5 baths. On the market: 79 days.

29 Cowdin St., Colonial (1940). Sold: $724,000. Listed at $749,000. Living area: 1,708  sq.-ft. 6 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 1.5 baths. On the market: 93 days.

206 School St., Single family (1925). Sold: $1,098,000. Listed at $1,098,000. Living area: 2,805 sq.-ft. 9 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 2.5 baths. On the market: 86 days.

200 Rutledge Rd., Garrison Colonial (1940). Sold: $1,580,000. Listed at $1,795,000,. Living area: 3,608 sq.-ft. 13 rooms, 5 bedrooms, 3.5 baths. On the market: 93 days.

A million dollar house on Rutledge? Of course! How about in the shadow of the Temple on Amherst Road? You bet. Even along School Street, where the production of “This Old House” came to visit, makes sense to see a price tag for a cool million. 

But Watson Road? The road off of Washington below the Presidential neighborhood is typical of many Belmont side-streets, one of homes built in the same style as their neighbors; sturdy but far from fancy. 

And 140 Watson is just that: the town rates it as a B grade house – heated by oil with an unfinished attic – with its last significant renovation was the installation of replacement windows a decade ago. 

The town’s assessors did bump up its assessed value in the past year, to a whopping $784,000. 

Somehow, this “average” house oversold its assessed value by nearly a quarter of a million dollars! Maybe the buyers misheard an important fact: it’s heating is oil not that there is oil in the basement, a la “The Beverly Hillbillies.”

The fact that an average house could sell for a fat premium should give people pause, during which time they can recall the last few housing financial “bubbles” and their impact on the community and town finances.

Sold in Belmont: A Special Ranch and A Round Antique

Photo: A brick and stone ranch on Belmont Hill.

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265 Cross St. Side-entrance Colonial (1930). Sold: $720,000.

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195 Prospect St. Brick and stone ranch (1954). Sold: $1,395,000.

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592 Trapelo Rd. Antique two-family (1882). Sold: $550,000.

A weekly recap of residential properties sold in the past seven-plus days in the “Town of Homes.”

265 Cross St. Side-entrance Colonial (1930). Sold: $720,000. Listed at $749,000. Living area: 1,860 sq.-ft. 7 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 1.5 baths. On the market: 68 days.

195 Prospect St. Brick and stone ranch (1954). Sold: $1,395,000. Listed at $1,570,000. Living area: 3,569 sq.-ft. 11 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 3.5 baths. On the market: 153 days.

592 Trapelo Rd. Antique two-family (1882). Sold: $550,000. Listed at $625,000. Living area: 2,000 sq.-ft. 9 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 2 baths. On the market: 104 days.

The ranch on Prospect Street was built to impress – using brick and stone rather than a frame with Prairie School touches – and it still does, although the nearly 3,600 sq.-ft. is essentially all on a single floor so there’s lots of walking. The house is beautifully situated on a half-acre lot which can be viewed from the wonderful enclosed glass deck. Now that’s impressive, costing a cool $66,000 in 2000. While some of the interior rooms have some dated fixtures, that should not have been the reason this grand house saw nearly $200,000 drop from the list price. Still, $1.4 million isn’t chicken feed.

It’s so strange to see an antique house left standing on Trapelo Road, but the tw0-family at 592 (near to Star Market) is a fine example of what 130 years ago was middle-class residences. While there are the challenges of an old house here – who knew a bathroom could be cobby cornered in such a tight space – you do get a unique and Victorian-inspired round parlor with five/six? windows. You could do so much with this room alone. 

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Sold in Belmont: Three Colonials, Long Owned, Purchased This Week

Photo: Million-dollar Colonial on Garfield.

A weekly recap of residential properties sold in the past seven-plus days in the “Town of Homes.”

• 35 Horne Rd. Center-entrance Colonial (1927). Sold: $930,000. Listed at $859,000. Living area: 2,485 sq.-ft. 10 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 1.5 baths. On the market: 42 days.

• 17 Garfield Rd. Center-entrance Colonial (1935). Sold: $1,300,000. Listed at $1,299,000. Living area: 2,438 sq.-ft. 9 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 2.5 baths. On the market: 63 days.

442 Pleasant St. Center-entrance Colonial (1935). Sold: $750,000. Listed at $775,000. Living area: 2,058 sq.-ft. 9 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 1.5 baths. On the market: 92 days.

43-45 Gilbert Rd. Two family (1925). Sold: $880,000. Listed at $899,000. Living area: 2,935 sq.-ft. 13 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 1.5 baths. On the market: 27 days.

46 Slade Rd. Condominium (1925). Sold: $497,000. Listed at $459,500. Living area: 1,388 sq.-ft. 6 rooms, 2 bedrooms, 2 baths. On the market: 27 days.

Three Belmont homes, owned by the sellers for between 37 to 50 years(!), selling in a market where their initial purchase price is considered quaint. 

The original prices and the year the property was bought by the most recent owners:

Horne Road: $88,900 in 1979.

Pleasant Street: $78,500 in 1977.

Garfield Road: $8,600 in 1965.

First, each of the homes are center-entrance Colonials built within a decade of the others – in the economic optimism of the 20s to the depth of the Depression – each with an uncomplicated, refined floor plan: two stories, a welcoming central hallway where on one side (the right?) there is a formal living room with a dining room on the other, and the kitchen and “family” room in the back. Upstairs are the bedrooms and not much else. 

Because the homes have a timelessness that good taste provides, it wasn’t hard to find buyers for these “typical” Belmont houses. The most impressive sale was Horne Road in Cushing Square that sold for nearly $70,000 above list. And to think it will just a few hundred feet from the Cushing Village construction site. (BTW, weren’t the Village developers having its groundbreaking this past June?)

The Belmont Hill colonial sold what was expected, but the Pleasant Street structure needed to cut its price to come off the market.


Sold in Belmont: The Beauty of the Two-Family

Photo: A two-family on Gilbert.

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18 Trowbridge St. (1929). Sold: $525,000.

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31 Gilbert Rd. 5+5 Two family (1925). Sold: $868,000.

A weekly recap of residential properties sold in the past seven-plus days in the “Town of Homes.”

18 Trowbridge St. “Old Style” house (1929). Sold: $525,000. Listed at $669,000. Living area: 1,700 sq.-ft. 7 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 1.5 baths. On the market: 98 days

31 Gilbert Rd. 5+5 Two family (1925). Sold: $868,000. Listed at $830,000. Living area: 2,600 sq.-ft. 12 rooms, 5 bedrooms, 2 baths. On the market: 87 days.

There are many beautiful homes in Belmont (and some that are downright ghastly) that are made up of many styles and design features: Victorians, Classic Colonials, Tudors, Arts and Craft and, in some incidences, modern construction.

One which I love for both its aesthetics and functionality is the early 20th-century two-family. Built to accommodate the rapidly growing population in town from the late-1890s to about 1930, they were constructed simply on single-family lots; but they were built solid with good workmanship and material. Many are in great shape today without significant repairs or reconstruction required. Nothing flashy but they now hold its own stylistically with other notable designs in town.

In addition, it allows many potential home buyers with modest income – teachers, middle managers, public safety personnel – who just can not breach the $845,000 medium price barrier for a single-family house, allowing them a way to reside in the Town of Homes.

When the Planning Board gets around to reviewing and rewriting the zoning code for much of the town’s residential neighborhoods, it should consider favoring the construction of two familys.

Real Estate Firms Lawndale, CENTURY21 Adams Merge

Photo: Lawndale Realty in Belmont Center.

Two well known real estate brokerages serving Belmont – an independent firm in Belmont Center and a local office of a national franchise – have merged to combined two of the longest-running firms in the “Town of Homes.” 

CENTURY 21 Adams Realty – located in Cushing Square at 486 Common St. – announced today, Thursday, Sept. 17, it has combined forces with Lawndale Realty of Channing Road, and will be known as CENTURY 21 Adams Lawndale.

“Led by Jim Savas, CENTURY 21 Adams Realty was established in 1989 and quickly became one of the top CENTURY 21 Real Estate Offices in New England, consistently earning two annual national awards for both sales and customer satisfaction. Lawndale Realty, Inc. was created 1984 by lifelong Belmont residents, Fred and Sue Pizzi, and has enjoyed continued success as the leading independent home seller in Belmont, specializing in residential sales and rentals,” read the press release issued on Sept. 17.

The new shop will be an independently owned and operated franchise affiliate of Century 21 Real Estate LLCthe well-known brand comprised of approximately 6,900 franchised broker offices in 78 countries and territories worldwide with more than 100,000 independent sales professionals.

Sold in Belmont: ‘Tired’ Homes on the Hill Sell Below List

Photo: 60 Stony Brook on Belmont Hill. 

A weekly recap of residential properties sold in the past seven-plus days in the “Town of Homes.”

48 Summit Rd. Townhouse condominium (2005). Sold: $1,345,000. Listed at $1,375,000. Living area: 2,520 sq.-ft. 9 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 3.5 baths. On the market: 84 days.

19 Thayer Rd. Condominum (1958). Sold: $263,750. Listed at $259,000. Living area: 625 sq.-ft. 4 rooms, 1 bedrooms, 1 baths. On the market: 42 days.

89 Bay State Rd. Colonial (1928). Sold: $1,050,000. Listed at $1,050,000. Living area: 2,616 sq.-ft. 10 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 2.5 baths. On the market: 70 days.

60 Stony Brook. Custom-design/ranch (1959). Sold: $1,100,000. Listed at $1,400,000. Living area: 2,616 sq.-ft. 10 rooms, 5 bedrooms, 3 baths. On the market: 161 days.

112 Winter St. Renovated (1946/2001). Sold: $895,000. Listed at $929,000. Living area: 3,100 sq.-ft. 8 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 3.5 baths. On the market: 78 days.

58 Crestview Rd. Ranch (1959). Sold: $1,025,000. Listed at $1,100,000. Living area: 2,816 sq.-ft. 7 rooms, 5 bedrooms, 4 baths. On the market: 70 days.

If you’ve lived in Belmont for any amount of time, you know that not every house on Belmont Hill is a brick manse with sculptured gardens with a view of Boston. Yes, they are pricey but many are beginning to show their age especially in their design and style.

Likely the custom-built house on Stony Brook Road was a humdinger of a residency when it was constructed half a century ago. Just how trendy was it to have a two-car garage projecting out from the Colonial-style split ranch with a brick wing jutting from the side. Not like those boring Colonials! Well, while those “boring” Colonial are much sought after, this mish-mash of styles looks and feels old. The interior is cramped with little in ways of options to use the available 2,600 square feet. It shouldn’t come as any surprise that the structure’s asking price fell by $300,000 before selling at $1.1 million. 

The same could be said for the ranch on Crestview (in the shadow of the Boston Temple), and the terrible retro build structure on Winter, each selling below their list. Sometimes “location” can’t help a tired old building sell for what their owners think. Sorry to say but these homes would be suitable candidates for demolition with a new building on the foundation. 

Sold in Belmont: Easy as Ones, Twos and a Three

Photo: A split-level ranch in the Winn Brook neighborhood sold for nearly 12 percent of its original list price.

A weekly recap of residential properties sold in the past seven-plus days in the “Town of Homes.”

9-11 Sabina Way. Two-family (1923). Sold: $880,000. Listed at $825,000. Living area: 2,520 sq.-ft. 12 rooms, 6 bedrooms, 3 baths. On the market: 63 days.

218-220 Blanchard Rd. Multi-family (1952). Sold: $900,000. Listed at $849,000. Living area: 2,520 sq.-ft. 12 rooms, 6 bedrooms, 3.5 baths. On the market: 42 days.

63 Country Club Ln. New construction (2014). Sold: $2,050,000. Listed at $2,475,000. Living area: 4,824 sq.-ft. 12 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 4.5 baths. On the market: 225 days.

14-16 Vincent Ave. Multi-family (1910). Sold: $860,000. Listed at $895,000. Living area: 3,090 sq.-ft. 15 rooms, 6 bedrooms, 3 baths. On the market: 70 days.

65 Marlboro St. Three-family (1900). Sold: $875,000. Listed at $849,000. Living area: 3,216 sq.-ft. 14 rooms, 5 bedrooms, 3 baths. On the market: 42 days. 

199 Beech St., #2. Walk-up condominium (1924). Sold: $391,000. Listed at $429,000. Living area: 868 sq.-ft. 4 rooms, 2 bedrooms, 1 baths. On the market: 106 days.

115 Lexington St. Colonial (1925). Sold: $625,000. Listed at $699,000. Living area: 1,682 sq.-ft. 7 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 1.5 baths. On the market: 139 days.

55 Sherman St. Split-level ranch (1955). Sold: $907,000. Listed at $799,000. Living area: 1,840 sq.-ft. 8 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 2.5 baths. On the market: 139 days.

306 Orchard St., #2. Condominium (1900). Sold: $455,000. Listed at $435,000. Living area: 1,525 sq.-ft. 6 rooms, 2 bedrooms, 2 baths. On the market: 70 days.

I think it comes as a surprise to many people when they discover that Belmont’s housing stock is far from being a homogeneous collection of Colonials and brick mansions. 

Unlike outlying surburban locations such as Wilmington where 93 percent of the housing stock is the typical single-family house, just under half (45 percent) of Belmont’s 9,600 residential structures are detached homes, with an almost equal number being multifamilies.

This past week, more than half of the sales in the “Town of Homes” were multifamilies including one three-unit building or a condo in a two or greater unit building. It appears the market for multis is healthy as all but one of the buildings sold for more than its list price. 

On the single-family side of the week, the owners of the split-level on Sherman Street stuck to their guns (leaving their house on the market for nearly four months) and saw a nice bump of nearly 12 percent from their list price. Twenty years ago, the term split-level was a deal breaker for many buyers as the style was considered old-fashion and the structures cheaply constructed. Not now.

Sold in Belmont: Historic Walter Pierce Modern Abode Tops $1.2 Million

Photo: Walter Pierce-designed house on upper Concord Avenue.

A weekly recap of residential properties sold in the past seven-plus days in the “Town of Homes.”

39 Payson Rd. #2, Condominium (1923). Sold: $525,000. Listed at $ 459,900. Living area: 1,288 sq.-ft. 6 rooms, 2 bedrooms, 1.5 bath. On the market: 50 day.

18 Brookside Ave. Colonial (1935). Sold: $865,000. Listed at $749,000. Living area: 2,000 sq.-ft. 7 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 1.5 baths. On the market: 77 days.

661 Concord Ave., Walter Pierce-designed modern (1961). Sold: $1,250,000. Listed at $1,195,000. Living area: 2,660 sq.-ft. 9 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 3.5 bath. On the market: 78 day.

117 Beech St., Multi-family (1915). Sold: $640,000. Listed at $619,900. Living area: 3,825 sq.-ft. 11 rooms, 5 bedrooms, 2 baths. On the market: 28 days.

25 Elm St., Colonial (1923). Sold: $820,000. Listed at $ 799,000. Living area: 1,930 sq.-ft. 7 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 1.5 bath. On the market: 77 day.

6 Prentiss Ln. Colonial (1932). Sold: $1,170,000. Listed at $1,295,000. Living area: 3,093 sq.-ft. 11 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 3.5 baths. On the market: 120 days.

37 South Cottage Rd, #93, Townhouse condominium (2011). Sold: $1,325,000. Listed at $1,395,000. Living area: 2,994 sq.-ft. 7 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 2.5 bath. On the market: 154 day.

12 Franklin St., Colonial (1924). Sold: $815,000. Listed at $849,000. Living area: 1,648 sq.-ft. 8 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 1.5 baths. On the market: 73 days.

10-12 Upland Rd. #10, Condominium (1925). Sold: $444,000. Listed at $439,900. Living area: 944 sq.-ft. 6 rooms, 2 bedrooms, 1 bath. On the market: 71 day.

14 Dundonald Rd. Ranch (1951). Sold: $1,180,000. Listed at $1,095,000. Living area: 2,374 sq.-ft. 7 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 3 baths. On the market: 70 days.

32 Foster Rd. #2, Condominium (1927). Sold: $457,500. Listed at $ 469,900. Living area: 1,268 sq.-ft. 6 rooms, 2 bedrooms, 1 bath. On the market: 70 day.

54-56 Sycamore St., Two-family (1925). Sold: $752,000. Listed at $729,000. Living area: 2,600 sq.-ft. 12 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 2 baths. On the market: 135 days.

Changes to the original design have taken place – the kitchen was enlarged in 1998 and the windows replaced in 2000 – and the house is not the “spare but stylish split-level” he is famous for (located in Peacock Farms in Lexington), but the sublime modernist residence at 661 Concord Ave. designed by Walter Pierce is a house of historic architectural merit.

While some may lump Pierce with another young post-war architect Carl Koch – the architect/builder of Belmont’s Snake Hill Road development (do yourself a favor and take a walk up Snake Hill Road off Pleasant Street to view this impressive experiment in suburban housing) – they were from two distinct school’s; Pierce is from MIT’s “American” version of modern architecture with its Scandinavian influences of emphasizing the space in and outside the building.

You can see (actually it’s hard to see from the road with non-native evergreens and an ugly fence out front) Pierce’s deft touch – a great profile of the Lexington resident is in his obituary – in the upper Concord Avenue house near Day School Lane.

The house is, in fact, a triple, split level (which in less-trained builder’s hands became a tired stereotype by the late 60s, the home of Mike and Carol Brady’s bunch) with a towering facade that slopes towards the back yard. Designing with the land in mind, the building has a narrow front (going from 17 feet at the entry to 28 feet in the back) with a substantial length, about 50 feet. Open the front door and up you go to the bedrooms; down to the family room, kitchen and dining room, the “basement” level is the open family space that leads to the patio and impressive backyard that is next to Habitat land.

While the interior space might be a distraction to modern homebuyers who want space over function – the dining room is a tight spot, and the kitchen is functional, not grandiose – the house works due to Pierce’s use space; it’s just so open and airy (can you say Sweden?) without interior walls. It’s impressive to have all that weight carried by the walls yet have nice sized windows to add natural light and a view of the landscaped yard. Modern touches include lack of detail – I love the mid-level fireplace – and stuff. What? No center island in the kitchen with indoor grill and install wok? It’s not a masterpiece or a trendsetter, but a solid design that any architect would love to have in their portfolio.

Surprisingly, the Pierce house – so thoughtfully created by a master architect – sits next to one of the worst-designed homes in town, both built within a year of each other. Go figure.

Besides having one of the best names in Belmont – a wee bit of the Highlands in dear ol‘ New England – and being a rare dead-end in town, Dundonald Road is one street on “the Hill” that has kept its modest homes intact. But that might be coming to an end; do you really spend $1 million plus for a 60 year old ranch without envisioning a demolition permit in your hand? 

Sold in Belmont: A Housing Solution on the Beech, A Premium in Bricks

Photo: 101 Beech St. 

A weekly recap of residential properties sold in the past seven-plus days in the “Town of Homes.”

9 Audrey Rd., Brick ranch (1954). Sold: $810,000. Listed at $ 775,000. Living area: 1,483 sq.-ft. 6 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 1.5 bath. On the market: 77 day.

29 Stults Rd. Brick Tudor (1924). Sold: $1,135,000. Listed at $1,100,000. Living area: 2,514 sq.-ft. 9 rooms, 5 bedrooms, 4 baths. On the market: 63 days.

43 Hillcrest Rd., Georgian Brick Colonial (1925). Sold: $2,225,000. Listed at $1,980,000. Living area: 4,564 sq.-ft. 12 rooms, 5 bedrooms, 2 full, 2 half baths. On the market: 49 days.

101 Beech St., #2, Condominium in a six-unit, self managed building (1911). Sold: $420,000. Listed at $449,900 (reduced to $424,900). Living area: 1,007 sq.-ft. 6 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 1 baths. On the market: 64 days.

27 Winthrop Rd. Colonial (1928). Sold: $1,115,000. Listed at $1,125,000. Living area: 2,211 sq.-ft. 9 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 3.5 baths. On the market: 77 days.

11 Broad St., Late Split-level ranch (1964). Sold: $820,000. Listed at $749,000. Living area: 2,000 sq.-ft. 7 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 2 bath. On the market: 63 day.

29 Worcester St., #2, Condominium in two family (1916). Sold: $565,000. Listed at $539,900. Living area: 1,532 sq.-ft. 6 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 2 baths. On the market: 78 days.

5 Simmons Ave., “Old Style” Brick Storybook (1937). Sold: $945,000. Listed at $960,000. Living area: 2,589 sq.-ft. 10 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 2 baths. On the market: 63 days.

One of the major reasons the medium home price in Belmont will likely reach $900,000 by the end of 2015 is the lack of new housing supply that could satisfy the demand of people seeking to live in town. So far, with the exception of the two major projects in Belmont’s future – Cushing Village and the Belmont Uplands with approximately 414 apartment-style homes to be in the supply chain by 2020 – most new construction is oversized with an appeal towards wealthy clients.

But a recent sale in a location one called “Central Square” – the intersection of Trapelo Road and Beech Street – could be a great example of solving the sacristy of moderate-priced homes. 101 Beech and its twin next door at 105 are six-unit condominiums – a pair of singles on each floor – that use space wisely with long, narrow rooms with parking hidden in the back. While they appear at first glance to be a pair of triple deckers joined at the hip, they were constructed with the idea of sharing the building as equal units – about 16 percent of the condo is common space. Built 105 years ago, they retain some great exterior features such as the street-facing balcony that’s reminiscent of the three-story buildings lining downtown New Orleans. Photos of the inside  show great architectural detail remaining for a starter home. These buildings will never be more than what they are, the first housing purchase of someone’s life; affordable with enough space to not feel cramped. 

Now just see a long line of these buildings running along Belmont Street, Trapelo Road, near parks, in high traffic areas where young homeowners are drawn. Rather than a high density development such as Cushing Village, this design is far more welcoming for the people you want to reside in Belmont, the young – maybe even hipsters. Just think of Waverley Square with this model along the roadway rather than the squat single-story retail or those stunning horrible townhouses Edward Hovsepian built at the site of the First Congregational Church.

But would residents be willing to change zoning bylaws to allow, as of right, this sort of building to be constructed? That’s the question to be answered.

The split-level ranch at 11 Broad St. should be placed on someone’s list of historic places needing protection. It is a beautiful late, 1964, ranch built as that style house began losing its popularity. While its a bit lacking in height – my 6-foot, one-inch tall son would always be ducking entering rooms with the ceiling so low – the general sweeping layout is of a bygone era. The best feature is the bay window; rounded and huge, it dominates the front of the house.

With most Belmont homes built of wood, you sometimes loss the realization that many wonderful houses on the Hill or in the Presidents neighborhood off Washington Street made of brick. And from the prices they are receiving, it appears buyers are placing a premium on the construction material. 


Sold in Belmont: Capes, Colonials and Condos Take Market into July

Photo: A classic pre-war Cape. 

A weekly recap of residential properties sold in the past seven-plus days in the “Town of Homes.”

12 Bayberry Ln., Townhouse condominium (2006). Sold: $1,260,000. Listed at $ 1,298,000. Living area: 2,740 sq.-ft. 8 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 2.5 bath. On the market: 92 days.

33 Homer Rd., Garrison Colonial (1940). Sold: $1,550,000. Listed at $1,639,000. Living area: 3,469 sq.-ft. 11 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 3.5 baths. On the market: 157 days.

64 Hoitt Rd., Classic Cape (1951). Sold: $714,000. Listed at $689,000. Living area: 1,272 sq.-ft. 7 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 1.5 baths. On the market: 70 days.

3-1 Agassiz, Condominium (2006). Sold: $570,000. Listed at $ 569,000. Living area: 2,157 sq.-ft. 7 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 2.5 bath. On the market: 63 days.

9 Gilmore Rd., Cape (1938). Sold: $755,000. Listed at $719,000. Living area: 1,488 sq.-ft. 7 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 1.5 baths. On the market: 49 days.

89 Hammond Rd., Colonial (1925). Sold: $900,000. Listed at $869,000. Living area: 1,776 sq.-ft. 7 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 2.5 baths. On the market: 77 days.

76 Lawrence Lane, Colonial (1937). Sold: $992,000. Listed at $1,195,000. Living area: 3,293 sq.-ft. 11 rooms, 6 bedrooms, 5 baths. On the market: 84 days.

15 Marlboro St., #1, Condominium (1906). Sold: $495,000. Listed at $489,900. Living area: 1,064 sq.-ft. 6 rooms, 2 bedrooms, 1 bath. On the market: 48 days.

The Belmont residential market appears to have returned to last year’s script: high-end houses will take a haircut before selling while prices for more modest abodes – especially lower than the town’s median value of $845,000-ish – will hold up in an environment where the inventory for more affordable units can not keep up with demand. 

A great example is the solid Colonial on Lawrence Lane up on Belmont Hill. This pre-war house is large, at approximately 3,300 square feet, with five baths and six bedrooms which appears to be what every buyer is clamoring to find. But despite great period detail such as a wonderful in-wall bookshelf in the den and an updated kitchen (including two dreadful skylights), the final sales price was $200,000 below the original list, falling before the seven figure benchmark. Could it be that while priced right for a similar-sized house built within the past five years, it may have been seen as “old” and lacking the finer points of the new mega-homes such as 15-foot ceilings and an open floor plan? 

The buyer who “won” the week was the person who purchased the beautiful Cape on Gilmore. At 1,500 square feet, it would be considered a bit of a squeeze for some families. But others would find it warm and cozy with a great three-season porch that will get a great deal of use, that is until the construction of the Uplands gets underway.