Sold In Belmont: The ‘Quintessential’ Multi-Family First Sale In 2018

Photo: Two-families are just as quintessential Belmont as the Colonial.

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

• 28-30 Gilbert Rd., Multi-family (1923). Sold: $825,000. Listed at $899,900. Living area: 2,050 sq.-ft. 10 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 2 baths. On the market: 79 days.

I keep calling the Colonial-style residential structure the “quintessential house in the Town of Homes.” But really, shouldn’t it be the humble two-family? It makes up nearly 40 percent of all housing in Belmont, are located in most neighborhoods and provide some of the limited numbers of affordable and rental housing in town. 

Gilbert Road, which is chock full of “twos,” is where the first house sale in 2018 took place. From the outside, there’s not much to 28-30 Gilbert with its boring white vinyl siding and inconspicuous front entry. But inside are a pair of “starter” homes, especially for Belmont – about 1,000 square feet, five rooms, two beds and a bath. The interior has retained much of the original molding, hardwood floors and period features such as built-in cabinet/hutch. There are no photos of the bedrooms so you can suspect they’re a bit tight space-wise but all in all, a good investment if they are turned into condos. 

Sold in Belmont: Ending the Year with Million Dollar Multi-families

Photo: The multi-family at 7 Pine St. in the arbor-named neighborhood at the corner of Belmont and Trapelo.

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

7 Pine St., Multi-family (1913). Sold: $1,199,000. Listed at $1,299,000. Living area: 2,754 sq.-ft. 11 rooms, 6 bedrooms, 3 baths. On the market: 114 days. Last sold: Dec. 2004, $650,000.

32 Chester Rd., Multi-family (1918). Sold: $1,135,000. Listed at $1,199,000. Living area: 2,772 sq.-ft. 12 rooms, 6 bedrooms, 2.5 baths. On the market: 56 days. Last sold: Nov. 1987, $322,500.

50 Bartlett Ave., Condominium/converted multi-family (1927). Sold: $536,000. Listed at $489,000. Living area: 1,140 sq.-ft. 5 rooms, 2 bedrooms, 1 baths. On the market: 50 days. Last sold: Oct. 2015, $448,000.

158 Watson Rd., Colonial (1935). Sold: $1,040,000. Listed at $925,000. Living area: 1,962 sq.-ft. 10 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 1.5 baths. On the market: 42 days. Last sold: Oct. 1992, $295,000.

16-18 Watson Rd., Multi-family (1939). Sold: $912,500. Listed at $825,000. Living area: 2,273 sq.-ft. 11 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 3 baths. On the market: 44 days. Last sold: Nov. 1987, $322,500.

It shouldn’t come as a surprise multi-family homes – which makes up a significant proportion of residential structures in Belmont – would follow the lead of the traditional single-detached dwellings in the ever-increasing escalation in value and sales price in Belmont’s housing market. Take a look at 7 Pine, which oversees the busy intersection of Belmont and Trapleo in the neighborhood of arbor named streets. This section of town, developed a decade or two after the turn of the last century, has seen the myriad of two-families that distinguish the area really pop in popularity due, in part, to the unique post Victorian, pre-Colonial styles – affectionately dubbed “Old Style” by the Belmont Assessors in the town’s property database – and the affordability of renting or owning a condo conversion.

Returning to 7 Pine, the assessed value was remarkably stable for a decade from 2004 to 2014 in the upper $600,000. But in the past three years, the property has increased in value by a third (in one year alone, 2015 to 2016, the assessed value jumped $170,000) to $953,000 in ’18. The property did undergo $30,000 in permitted renovations (replacing the windows a few years back), but other than that, it’s just the bubble-like skyrocketing of the price-tag on anything “Belmont” that can explain the rise in value. It has two nice, smallish units – with an eye-popping color selected for the walls – with original woodwork/moulding, updated kitchen/baths and nice porches. The best feature, for anyone who walks by the place, will know, is the sort-of English-style garden and landscaping. 

Sold In Belmont: Two Family Breaks Bank Selling For $1.22 Million

Photo: A two-family that sold for nearly one and a quarter million dollars? 

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

A pair of two-families on corner lots built in the same year, but way different sale prices. 

• 92-94 Creeley Rd., Two family (1922). Sold: $1,220,000. Listed at $1,220,000. Living area: 3,089 sq.-ft. 15 rooms, 5 bedrooms, 3 baths. On the market: 54 days. Last sold: Dec. 2008, $595,000.

• 717 Belmont St., Second-floor condo (1922). Sold: $445,000. Listed at $449,998. Living area: 1,380 sq.-ft. 6 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 1 baths. On the market: 90 days. Last sold: Condo master deed filed Aug. 2007.

They must have discovered gold in the basement of 92-94 Creeley Rd. Surely that would explain how a C+ rated, 95-year-old two family would sell for nearly one and a quarter million dollars. OK, I give you the opportunity of a first-floor rental, there’s some renovation – the last permitted work was completed in 2015 with the deck and renovated bathroom costing $27,400 – and it’s a corner lot at the intersection of Gilbert. But do those amenities require a $337,000 premium above the town assessed value (2017) of $883,000? It’s a good-sized house at more than 3,000 square-feet but that space fills 15 rooms, and the images of the interior don’t give you the sense of wide-open spaces. The seller did add a second floor – it’s the attic – to the owner’s unit, just don’t be too tall when standing due to the slant of the roof. All this and an unfinished basement – which will likely stay in its present state for storage now that the attic has become living space – and a road out front that must be high on Glenn Clancy’s pavement condition index of streets to be repaired.

So is 92-94 Creeley Rd. the harbinger of a new pricing reality in two family sales in Belmont or a Casandra of a real estate bubble? 

Sold In Belmont: Another Million Dollar Sale On Pleasant Street

Photo: A beautiful Old-Style single family near Town Field sold below list but still near seven figures.

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

• 53-55 Alma Ave., Two-family (1916). Sold: $855,000. Listed at $879,000. Living area: 2,300 sq.-ft. 15 rooms, 5 bedrooms,2 baths. On the market: 65 days. Last sold: March 1968, $0. 

• 470 Pleasant St., Brick Tudor/Old Style (1929). Sold: $1,400,000. Listed at $1,295,000. Living area: 3,841 sq.-ft. 10 rooms, 5 bedrooms, 3.5 baths. On the market: 139 days. Last sold: Sept. 2003, $624,900.

• 39 Gilmore Rd., Pre-war Cape (1941). Sold: $765,000. Listed at $799,000. Living area: 1,587 sq.-ft. 7 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 2 baths. On the market: 30 days. Last sold: Oct. 2006, $672,500. 

Sold In Belmont: Let The Fall Selling Season Begin

Photo: A beautiful Old-Style single family near Town Field sold below list but still near seven figures.

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

• 39 Davis Rd., Two-family (1925). Sold: $810,000. Listed at $819,000. Living area: 2,098 sq.-ft. 10 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 2 baths. On the market: 64 days. Last sold: Dec. 2006, $534,000

• 14 Gale Rd., Hip-roof Colonial (1935). Sold: $980,000. Listed at $925,000. Living area: 1,860 sq.-ft. 8 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 2.5 baths. On the market: 50 days. Last sold: a long time ago (no on-line record with Assessors Dept.)

• 22 Troy Rd., Garrison Colonial (1935). Sold: $869,000. Listed at $930,000. Living area: 1,574 sq.-ft. 7 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 2.5 baths. On the market: 97 days. Last sold: Aug. 2002, $545,000.

• 76 Claflin St., Sort of Dutch Colonial-ish that was expanded (1929). Sold: $1,525,000. Listed at $1,550,000. Living area: 3,217 sq.-ft. 10 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 3 full, 2 half baths. On the market: 24 days. Last sold: April. 2012, $1,005,000.

• 72 Upland Rd., Old-Style (1911). Sold: $915,000. Listed at $925,000. Living area: 1,856 sq.-ft. 9 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 1.5 baths. On the market: 85 days. Last sold: Oct. 1993, $263,000.

Sold in Belmont: A Pair of Million Dollar Splits That Took Different Tacks

Photo: A highlight of smart, architectural sensitive renovation in a split level in the Winn Brook.

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


• 58 Crestview Rd., Split-level ranch (1959/2016 renovation). Sold: $1,500,000. Listed at $1,775,000. Living area: 4,200 sq.-ft. 7 rooms, 5 bedrooms, 4.5 baths. On the market: 79 days.


544 Trapelo Rd., Two-family (1890). Sold: $680,000. Listed at $699,999. Living area: 1,747 sq.-ft. 10 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 2.5 baths. On the market: 157 days.


61 Hoitt Rd., Split-level ranch (1957). Sold: $1,100,000. Listed at $1,100,000. Living area: 1,962 sq.-ft. 8 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 2.5 baths. On the market: 95 days.


66-68 Chester Rd., Two-family (1917). Sold: $1,100,000. Listed at $1,025,000. Living area: 1,747 sq.-ft. 14 rooms, 6 bedrooms, 3 baths. On the market: 67 days.

After WWII, the rapidly growing middle class was seeking to leave the urban neighborhood and move to the expanding suburbs to find new homes with a modern design that wouldn’t cost an arm and a leg. Into that void came the Ranch, the sprawling single family with its long, close-to-the-ground outline, and wide open layout inspired by Frank Lloyd Wright’s Prairie homes. You can see many great examples of this architectural design on Belmont Hill, notably on Spring Valley Road. The design doesn’t particularly work well in New England: it’s best located in a flat landscape with few trees allowing sunlight to filter in which is hampered by the hills and wooded areas of the Northeast.

But by the 1970s, the design grew out of favor – the lack of natural light and the “wide-open spaces” of the run-on rooms – as hybrid postmodern homes with cathedral ceilings, skylights, island cooktops, and other ugly features dominated the demands of homebuyers.

In the past week, a pair of ranches, split-levels with upper “private” (bedrooms and baths) and lower “public” (living room/kitchen/dining rooms) levels, were sold taking different tacks to get to a seven-figure sales price.

On Crestview Road, the 57-year-old split was given an extensive makeover by the developer who bought the house for $1,025,000 million in August 2015 to flip it. He dropped $178,807 into the structure, adding nearly 1,300 sq.-ft. (the size of a two-bed condominium) with an expanded and renovated kitchen (with quartz counter tops!) with a pair of dishwashers (Two dishwashers?). But likely done anticipating what buyers would want, the developer added a vaulted ceiling in the living area which destroys the architectural integrity of the ranch design.

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With an assessed value of $1.36 million, the developer rolled the dice and marketed the place for an ambitious $1,775,000. But soon someone named “The slowing local real estate market” – Boston has dropped out of the top 20 strongest residential locations in the US at the end of ’16 – told the developer he was still selling a ranch. Soon the listing price fell three times by October to $1,575,000. And he still took a haircut on the final price of $1.5 million. Profit, but more of a razor-thin margin.

The ranch on Hoitt Road in the Winn Brook neighborhood – a block from the school – also saw a $34,000 kitchen renovation in 2013/14 that included a center island, custom cabinets, new appliances and … quartz counter tops! A trend worth praising.


But rather than blow up the rooms, the updates in the “public” areas were faithful to the split-level history, keeping the architectural details – ornamental iron railing, flat brick fireplace, high windows – during the makeover. The highlight is expanding the patio into a three-season living space (what a great way to use the patio’s support beams as an aesthetic focus) opening up into the living room. 

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Purchased for $700,000 in ’11, listed and sold at $1.1 million.

Sold in Belmont: Double the Size, Double the Price

Photo: Bulking up on Cedar.

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


 222 Prospect St., Brick/frame modified Colonial (1936). Sold: $1,210,000. Listed at $1,100,000. Living area: 2,914 sq.-ft. 9 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 2.5 baths. On the market: 61 days.


96 Winter St., Ranch/Cape (1950). Sold: $700,000. Listed at $789,900. Living area: 1,885 sq.-ft. 6 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 2 baths. On the market: 160 days.


64 Channing Rd., Second-floor condo (1952). Sold: $450,000. Listed at $459,000. Living area: 952 sq.-ft. 5 rooms, 2 bedrooms, 1 baths. On the market: 68 days.


69 Cedar Rd., Renovated Colonl (1920). Sold: $1,880,000. Listed at $2,100,000. Living area: 4,588 sq.-ft. 8 rooms, 5 bedrooms, 5.5 baths. On the market: 109 days.


90 Wellesley Rd., Split-level ranch (1963). Sold: $1,400,000. Listed at $1,289,000. Living area: 4,149 sq.-ft. 8 rooms, 5 bedrooms, 5.5 baths. On the market: 74 days.

• • • 

One year ago this month, the near-century-old house on Cedar Road just off Goden – midway between the Chenery and the Wellington schools – caught the attention of a friendly developer who bought the structure with an idea of building big.


But rather than knocking the current structure down and constructing some monster truck version of a residential house on the site, the team had another option on hand: an ample backyard. With a lot size of 9,000 sq.-ft. – as opposed to the 7,000 sq.-ft. the developer of 185 Dalton Rd. (that hideous blue whale of a house) was able to use – the developer was able to expand outward into a lawn. In fact, the addition cobbled onto the rear of the original house at 2,500 sq.-ft. is a bit more than your average Belmont colonial.

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Let’s look at the tale of the tape:

House sq.-ft.:

  • 2015: 2,024
  • 2016: 4,588

Total Rooms/Bed/Bath:

  • 2015: 8/4/1.5
  • 2016: 11/5/5.5

Assessed value/Final sale price

  • 2015: $869,000/$891,000
  • 2016: N/A/$1,880,000

The end result, within a year’s time, the sales price for the newly-renovated house doubled.

So you can commend the developer’s effort to use the existing facade/frame to keep the house in the same scale from at least the street as its neighbors while providing wealthy buyers all the unnecessary space and soon-to-be-empty rooms they demand. Unless you have half a dozen kids, why do you need 4,500 sq.-ft? 

Sold in Belmont: Loft Living on Waverley Street, No Longer on Goden for Concord Ave.

Photo: 112 Waverley with the antebellum balcony.

A weekly recap of residential properties sold in the past seven 25-plus days in the “Town of Homes.”


264 Concord Ave., Unit 2. Downstairs condo in two family (1915). Sold: $680,000. Listed at $699,000. Living area: 1,350 sq.-ft. 5 rooms, 2 bedrooms, 2 baths. On the market: 81 days.


685 Belmont St., Two-family (1918). Sold: $689,900. Listed at $699,000. Living area: 2,250 sq.-ft. 10 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 2 baths. On the market: 102 days.


112 Waverley St., New construction Colonial (2015). Sold: $1,210,000. Listed at $1,210,000. Living area: 3,200 sq.-ft. 8 room, 3 bedrooms, 2.5 baths. On the market: 66 days.


• 262 Concord Ave., Unit 1. Upstairs condo in two family (1915). Sold: $664,000. Listed at $659,000. Living area: 1,350 sq.-ft. 5 rooms, 2 bedrooms, 2 baths. On the market: 81 days.


• 55 Trapelo Rd., Classic ‘Belmont’ Colonial with attached four-room office space (1920). Sold: $930,000. Listed at $998,000. Living area: 2,400 sq.-ft. 10 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 2.5 baths. On the market: 118 days.

[Below is the personal opinion of the writer and not of the Belmontonian, which loves all homes and those who sell, make and buy them.]

Apparently, anything a residential contractor/architect/developer constructs in Belmont today will sell for top dollar.

Case in point, the newly built lump of wood at the corner of Waverley and Waverley Terrace. 

First the outside; The front-facing exterior is attempting to appear like a Colonial which is fine if it was wide enough for the number of windows required: while five (windows on the second floor) over four (first floor) is the traditional arrangement, there should be some spacing between them. But with the boxy nature of the house rather than a more expansive rectangular shape found in Colonials, you have to squeeze the windows way too tight to get them all in. I won’t even mention the windows should have correctly proportioned shutters, but that’s for another day.

The basic problem on Waverley is like so much new construction in Belmont; developers are attempting to pack so much livable square footage into a relatively small lot created about 100 years ago. This one is hammered into a tiny parcel that once housed a modest single family. That’s why there’s a back “strip” since it doesn’t qualify as a back “yard.” Not that you could find any value in looking at the blank walls and dull windows on three sides of the house, particularly the garage side with three windows with shutters and for some unknown reason, the ones closest to the rear without. The neighbors who have to see this side thank you. 

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And what’s with that bizarre landing/balcony above the front door? Colonial (Colonial Revivals) main entries are accented with a pediment, that traditional triangular crown above the door. A popular variation is an extended pediment that is supported by columns to form a covered porch. But on Waverley Street, what you have is a throw on from an antebellum Atlanta manse that makes no sense whatsoever in New England. How is Scarlett O’Hara to get onto the balcony? There’s no door so I guess she’ll have to crawl with her hooped skirt through the middle window.

How do you defend this?

Observer: What’s with the phony balcony above the entry.

Developer: It’s pretty.

Observer: But it doesn’t belong on a Colonial-style house.

Developer: It’s pretty.

Observer: It’s like putting a big red ball nose on “Whistler’s Mother.”

Developer: It’s pretty.

Want to know why true Colonials have pediments and not Southern-themed terraced balconies? Because New England gets sixty inches of snow a year and Atlanta doesn’t! Who’s going to shovel this decorative miscue? With the front facing south, we all know what that means: icicles the size of stalactites. It’ll look like a scene from the “The Game of Thrones” come February.

Then, there is the interior. There certainly is a “wow” factor coming through the front door, but not the “wow” value you’d want because what you are confronted with is an aesthetically vapid empty space. It’s loft living, Belmont style! I have been in a room in an Archduke’s palace where Mozart premiered an opera and I swear it was performed in less space. Yell “hello” at the entry and the echo coming off the back wall will give you whiplash (Hello! hello! hello! hello …).

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The reason for this expanse of air is that the area for the kitchen, dining room and living room are combined into a single area comprising 900 square feet. There are condos for sale with that much livable space. 

What this expanse of space tells any owner is: you’re on your own! This floor plan is likely to be a royal pain for the simple reason the homeowner (more likely an interior decorator) will need to map out and then execute elements – shelving, furniture, screens – to “define” space for certain activities. Why? Because we humans crave it. It’s the reason we left the caves. We want a designated area for casual living, for cooking, for eating, for formal dining, for quiet space. Where is the privacy with such a busy first floor? How can you relax with a good book when the television is on, someone is cooking in the quarry and teens are going up and down the open staircase, all within view. I suspect there will be a line of people wanting to use the first-floor office and the bathroom simply because they have doors that can be closed. And you really want to hide the kitchen as visitors will mistake it as a granite quarry. Welcome to the 1980s.


The reason for the open area is that walls would take up space and show the true dimensions of the first floor. The house is listed at 3,400 sq.-ft. but 800 sq.-ft. is in what is being called the family room but, hey, it’s an unfinished basement that you throw the kids in the winter. Include the garage and utility (electrical) room and you’re looking at a 2,300 sq.-ft. house on two floors. Add walls, common areas (hallways) and the rest, well, it’s a lot less than the overabundance of space most buyers want in new construction. 

The second floor shows the problem of squeezing as much space into a smallish lot: There isn’t a  landing or a hallway when you reach the top of the stairs but a tiny common space where you’re facing three doors. 

And the depressing fact is that it doesn’t have to be this way. There has been great new construction and renovations in Belmont – here’s one – with elements that an architect can steal for their own site. But developers today would rather select a common design out of a book than think about the people who will occupy the space. It’s if Frank Lloyd Wright decided, what the hell, why not select a beach house design for that land by the falls? 

So despite the long list of fails, there were 1,210,000 million reasons why this example of architectural malpractice was built. But then again, the purchaser is unlikely to spend a lifetime here. As was noted in this weekly article months ago, it appears that many owners of million dollar homes – why does the term “million dollar homes” seem so out-of-place on the “Terrace” – will leave by the time the second coat of paint is dry. Why be bothered by the strangely empty space and tight space upstairs? We’ll be gone soon enough.

So, it doesn’t matter what you construct: build it and they will come, cash in hand.

• • • • •

Here’s a new one, the owner of a home at the corner of Goden and Concord has decided that a Concord Avenue address would suit the sale of the condos better than keeping the old address.


“Official address has been changed from 4 Goden St. to 262 Concord Ave., Belmont” said the sales blurb with a similar one for the other unit. Does Concord Avenue now hold more cachet than Go(l)den Street?

To be fair, the structure’s front door does face Concord Avenue which would lead you to believe the address change is a correction 101 years in the making.

• • • • •

JJ Watt is one of the best defensive linebackers in the NFL, a three-time Defensive Player of the Year (although he had surgery for a herniated disk during the summer and is not 100 percent) and a big deal for his team the Houston Texans. So, let’s just imagine Watt was traded by the Texans to the hometown New England Patriots. And let’s just imagine he loves the new Belmont Center so much he wants to live in the “Town of Homes.” So that means not just a trade of players but also of homes.

In Houston, Watt lives in what is called a “modest” home in Pearland, Texas: Built in 2005, the traditional-style, four-bedroom, three bathroom home measures 4,169 square feet and sits on a quarter-acre lot. It features a saltwater pool, patio with pergola, and outdoor kitchen. The two-story family room has a fireplace and specialty molding. There’s also a master suite on the main floor.

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The price: $465,000.

So what can Watt get in Belmont? Try this NFL-ready “modest” condo on Gilbert Road: Built 90 years ago, the quaint 990 square foot first floor unit in the sought after Cushing Square area of Belmont features hardwood floors, a sun-filled living room that opens to a formal dining room with a built-in china cabinet, two bedrooms and a tiled bath. Other pluses: updated utilities, replacement windows, ample basement storage, a porch and fenced yard, one car garage, and three car driveway parking. 

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The price: $489,000.

While Watt may balk (inter-sports reference) at trading up to Belmont, this condo is actually a great starter for a young couple looking to establish themselves in town. Just not a 6 foot, 5 inch, 290-pound transfer. It is quite charming with the period interior detail throughout and a foyer entry. I even think it would be great for empty nesters as they save up to buy a Rhode Island retirement home.

Sold In Belmont: Condo Quintet A Nice Affordability Sound; Common Million Again


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

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• 135 Slade St., Top floor condominium (1920). Sold: $649,000. Listed at $648,500. Living area: 1,777 sq.-ft. 8 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 2 baths. On the market: 74 days.

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• 267 Beech St., Unit 2, Top floor condominium (1928). Sold: $725,000. Listed at $749,000. Living area: 1,965 sq.-ft. 9 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 2 baths. On the market: 80 days.

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• 20 Chester Rd. Unit 1, Condominium (1917). Sold: $489,000. Listed at $460,000. Living area: 1,113 sq.-ft. 5 rooms, 2 bedrooms, 1 baths. On the market: 32 days.

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• 191 Common St., Colonial (1925). Sold: $1,550,000. Listed at $1,425,000. Living area: 2,488 sq.-ft. 10 rooms, 5 bedrooms, 3 full, 2 half baths. On the market: 53 days.

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• 90 Lewis Rd., Top floor Condominium (1923). Sold: $630,000. Listed at $599,900. Living area: 1,690 sq.-ft. 7 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 2 baths. On the market: 54 days.

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• 274 Washington St., Brick and shingle English Colonial (1930). Sold: $1,040,000. Listed at $935,000. Living area: 2,251 sq.-ft. 8 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 2.5 baths. On the market: 54 days.

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• 30 Marlboro St., Unit 1., Condominium (1916). Sold: $527,000. Listed at $499,000. Living area: 1,690 sq.-ft. 6 rooms, 2 bedrooms, 1 baths. On the market: 83 days.

There has been a great deal discussed – here in Belmont (through the effort of the Belmont Citizens Forum) and the State Senate – on modifying the town’s zoning bylaws to increase the number of affordable housing units in town and across the Commonwealth. One aim is to make building homes with greater density in residential neighborhoods, specifically allowing two families to be “by right” (and skipping the need for a Special Permit) in more areas of town.

This past week, five condominiums in two families were sold for between $729,000 – a big nine roomer with nearly 2,000 sq.-ft. – and $489,000, far more affordable (but barely reasonable for a couple with middle-class income) than the medium price for a single-family house that is nearly seven figures. 

And the condos have something for many: a great starter home or a place for the empty nester. It would also be a place for a small family to spend the 12 years to get through the school years. Take a look at the detail.

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267 Beech St., Unit 2

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267 Beech St., Unit 2

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267 Beech St., Unit 2

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20 Chester Rd Unit 1

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20 Chester Rd Unit 1

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20 Chester Rd Unit 1

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90 Lewis Rd.

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90 Lewis Rd.

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90 Lewis Rd.

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135 Slade St.

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135 Slade St.

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135 Slade St.

And the star of the quintet of condo is the one on Marlboro Street. A steal at $527,000 for 1,300 sq.-ft. with beautiful wood molding, modern kitchen, renovated bath (in proper white), a quirky layout and space out back. Everything to love.

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30 Marlboro St Unit 1.

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30 Marlboro St Unit 1.

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30 Marlboro St Unit 1.

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30 Marlboro St Unit 1.

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30 Marlboro St Unit 1.

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30 Marlboro St Unit 1.

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30 Marlboro St Unit 1.

It might be harder to develop these economical units in the future after Town Meeting approved a four-year moratorium (expanding on a temporary ban) prohibiting the construction of two-family houses on single families lots in the general residence zone. 

Since the moratorium will sunset in 2018, hopefully, there will not be a prejudice against building two families that are similar to these beauties. 

Common Street, as in “it’s now common to see a million house” on this road. The latest is 191 Common St., which is located near St. Joe’s and the Wellington, a building that just seven years ago barely broke $650,000. Much of that was due to a typical situation in Belmont; a long-time owner who didn’t keep up with repairs and modernizing the systems.

The new owners could see beyond the aging infrastructure and years of neglect and got to work. They threw in $105,000 into a new roof, replacing all 36 windows and all bathrooms were renovated as was the kitchen with a freaky harlequin black and white floor. They also enclosed the porch and built a new deck. They also put a few bucks to landscaping, siding and interior work.

The result: the once-threadbare home was sold for more than $1.5 million, nearly three times what they bought it.

Sold In Belmont: Mansions (And A Simple Ranch) Required Millions To Buy

Photo: A. 

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

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• 52 Grant Ave., Unit 2, Townhouse (2007). Sold: $800,000. Listed at $730,000. Living area: 1,955 sq.-ft. 5 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 2 full, 2 half baths. On the market: 100 days.

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• 635 Concord Ave., Colonial-ish (2005). Sold: $1,958,000. Listed at $2,100,000. Living area: 5,205 sq.-ft. 10 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 4.5 baths. On the market: 96 days.

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• 38 Audubon Ln., I have no idea (2012). Sold: $2,980,000. Listed at $3,150,000. Living area: 5,112 sq.-ft. 10 rooms, 5 bedrooms, 6.5 baths. On the market: 96 days.

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• 28 Brettwood Rd., Ranch (1953). Sold: $1,012,000. Listed at $1,295,000. Living area: 2,686 sq.-ft. 10 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 2.5 baths. On the market: 89 days.

You remember the lyrics of the 70’s television show, “The Jeffersons.” 

“Well we’re movin’ on up,
To the east side.
To a deluxe apartment in the sky.

And that’s what one Belmont couple is doing, swinging the sale of their house for one that’s on the better side of the town.

First, they had to sell the first house … for nearly $3 million.


One thing you can say about the house at 38 Audubon Ln. (it’s a cul du sac off Concord Avenue at Mill Street) is the work of the five-year-old house is outstanding, or what the town assessing department calls “superlative” with the rare grade of A++. That should not come to a surprise since the builder/owner, John Eurdolian, is a master contractor. Just think if you were a sub on the job and had a client who knows how to hang a door better than you?

Eurdolian bought a bit of land on Audubon for $700,000 in 2010 then spent nearly $745,000 to construct the building he just sold, re-cooping his cost two-fold.

While there is no way to describe the eclectic exterior design – modern jumbled? – it’s new and big, and that’s what some rich people demand, especially those buyers who come from overseas. So it took less than 100 days to sell and at nearly half-a-million dollars over its assessed value. 

Now, the Eurdolian’s won’t be living in the Hotel Tria in Fresh Pond‎ waiting to move into their new house. In fact, they’ll be movin’ on up Belmont Hill on, oh so proper, Marsh Street. 

And similar to his former house, Eurdolian built a grand new house on Marsh, buying a fading old Colonial in 2014 that had suffered water damage. He put down $900,000 for the house, then quickly knocked it down and spent $854,000 to make a grand statement – 7,429 sq.-ft., 14 rooms, 5 beds, 5 full and 2 half baths – on a street with plenty of those. Its value today? $2,129,000. And how much do you think this would sell for? Plenty.