Looking for a $200K home? You’ll need to stop for gas

Friday, July 13, 2018, Vol. 42, No. 28

There were 4,036 closings in June, Greater Nashville Realtors sales information reveals, a slight increase from 3,887 closings last June. Of note is that the 3,887 closings last year left an inventory of 8,842, while this June’s closings had 11,087 homes remaining on the market, a number more than last month’s 9,511.

More inventory should point to lower prices, but that is not the case. Prices rose from a median of $299,000 in May for a single-family home to $314,000 for a single-family residence in June. Condos, however, dropped from $226,000 to $221,185.

The 3 percent growth is a number that has been considered normal for Nashville through the years as it represents strong, stable growth. The increase in inventory will be seen as a blessing by the thousands of frustrated buyers.

Missy Chandler, the renowned Dickson County Realtor, laughed last week that Nashville buyers had begun to search in Dickson County looking for affordable housing and more inventory, but it is not there, she says. It is difficult to find homes in that area in the $200,000 range.

Sale of the Week

Thousands, more likely hundreds of thousands, of drivers have passed the venerable, stately edifice located across Harding Place from Belle Meade Country Club without ever setting foot in the building.

That is not so say that the owners are not hospitable, as the manse has been the home of many of the city’s most beloved and celebrated social icons.

The building is now known as the Belle Meade Condominiums, yet it is safe to assume that there has never been a real estate-type open house within the compound.

Tax records show there are only 12 units in the entire building, along with a carriage house. Four individuals own two units each, so the ownership of the property is distributed among only eight owners. It is a small, exclusive community.

Last week, the residence known as E3 and D3 sold for $1.3 million, thereby establishing a new record for sales price and cracking the $400-per-square-foot barrier, coming in at $403 per square. While only on the third floor, this is considered a penthouse.

Although housing only three stories, the 1918 Tudor Revival is filled with tales.

E3 and D3 have a combined 3,223 square feet with three bedrooms, three full bathrooms and three fireplaces among its raised beam ceilings. There are four storage areas and one garage space. The $2,000 per month homeowners’ association fee covers insurance, maintenance of the grounds and the sewer, according to the Realtracs listing. Of course, pools, tennis, golf and fine dining are across the street, but Belle Meade Country Club dues are not included in the HOA fee.

The listing agents are a likely pair with high-end veteran brokers Steve Fridrich and Rick French taking the helm on the seller side, while Neal Clayton, no stranger to the area, represented the buyer in this transaction.

The listing describes the development as “a collection of unique residences” and mentions this is a rare opportunity.

And it was, although sales are not as rare as they once were. There have been sales in 1994, and then one per year in 2010-2013, as well as sales in 2016, 2017 and now 2018.

The dynamic duo of French and Fridrich listed the condo for $1.75 million hoping the wave of popularity of downtown living would wash ashore in Belle Meade. With its 3,223 square feet, the $1.75 million price would be a bargain for a downtown penthouse.

Its price of $1.3 million would compare to a 22nd floor Icon with 1,928 square feet that sold for $1,3725,000, a two-bedroom, two bath unit, or a 13th floor Twelve Twelve unit with 1,867 square feet that sold for $1,385,00 with two bedrooms, two bathrooms and a powder room.

At least in Nashville condos, the location, location, location refers more to height than dirt, and urban living is more desirable than the suburban living, but the Manning – a 36-unit condominium development at 120 Woodmont near Harding Road with units selling for $1.85 million to $5.4 million – is on the way. It breaks ground this year, and it was announced this week that $20 million in presales have already been signed.

Maybe new will be better.

It is interesting to read in their remarks describing the Belle Meade condo, French and Fridrich boasted that the plumbing, HVAC and electrical were updated in the 1980s.

Many of those living in the Icon and Twelve Twelve were not born during those updates.

Richard Courtney is a licensed real estate broker with Christianson, Patterson, Courtney, and Associates and can be reached at richard@richardcourtey.com.