The best house on the street

16 Benjamin Street

16 Benjamin Street

This is a lovely, well built house on Benjamin that neatly illustrates the rise and fall of our market. Its builder priced it when it was still under construction at $3.725 in April, 2006, $1.1 million higher than anything on Benjamin had ever fetched. As the market soared and work progressed, the builder reacted by raising it first to $3.925 and then to $4.400. I had my doubts at the time whether it was wise to pay so much more than the houses surrounding this one were worth but someone disagreed and bought it for $4.365 million in late ’06. Those buyers are now trying to sell it again, and originally priced it at about what they paid for it 2 years ago, $4.395. Today they have acknowledged that they’re facing a loss and have reduced it to $3.995. It’s a great house, but when the highest price on Benjamin, before this one, is $2.683, achieved at the height of the boom, I think these sellers will continue to confront difficulty. Again – there’s nothing at all wrong with this house, but birds of a feather and all that ….

To be honest, when this house sold for what it did back in 2006 I was reminded of an incident back in the dot com days when I went into a deli for a cup of coffee and found the counterman glued to the financial news channel, watching his investments. I told the friend I was with, “when the guy selling you coffee is buying tech stocks,you’re long past due getting out.” Some things don’t change.


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6 responses to “The best house on the street

  1. anonymous

    Location is the first through third laws of real estate physics….morons

  2. OGRCC

    Benjamin in OG?

    That’s typical of the giantnormous crap looking houses you see in Riverside too. See Druid lane and Bramble lane…..

    they don’t fit in Riverside or OG unless they are waterfront mansions…. even then they look like they belong in some other community or something or at least in backcountry greenwich.

    These are the white elephants everyone is referring to and thanks for pointing it out.. i feel bad for the parties involved.

    what was everyone smoking back then????

  3. Why do agents take listings that are so grossly overpriced? Do they actually spend the money to advertise and market them at these prices or just throw them up on the listing service and let them age?

    • christopherfountain

      Richard, I think there are some agents who drank the same Kool-Ade their clients did. At least, that’s how i interpret the nastiness tossed my way.
      Others take listings, no matter how wildly-over priced, in the hope that the client will eventually see reason and drop the price to a level where it will sell.

  4. troutbrook

    Lovely? The design of this house defies description. What’s with the window above the entry?

    • christopherfountain

      okay, Troutbrook, maybe I was being a bit over-kind describing the house’s architecture, but I figure the seller has enough trouble without my piling on. I have no idea what that window’s about.