Two interesting old houses turned up for sale in the past couple of weeks with a disappointing element in common: Both owners appear more interested in selling to developers than to homeowners. Each of the properties has a bit of acreage, and both are in areas that have been developed with subdivisions in the past few decades. Losing them would eliminate pieces of Greensboro’s historic character from once-outlying neighborhoods where little of that quality remains.
The foursquare house at 429 North Cedar Street is available to someone who might want to move it. The structure has been relocated once before. It sits on a cinderblock foundation. Many original architectural features have been lost, but they can be re-created or re-imagined.
It would be hard to find a prettier old farmhouse than 4909 Oldway Road. Set on four acres just off U.S. 29 North near Browns Summit, it’s on the market for $390,000. It has been for sale for more than two years, a remarkable length of time considering the fine condition of the house and property. Buyers may be put off by the proximity to the highway — it’s right at the N.C. 150 exit — but someone is going to get over that and get a pretty good price on a very nice place.
Update: 818 Fifth Avenue sold for its asking price, $119,900, on May 25, 2018.
Not every classic home is expensive. Older homes that could be considered starter homes come on the market often. The tough part is getting them before Greensboro’s voracious landlords can grab them. Starter homes have been in especially high demand so far this year.
Update: 2440 Glencoe Street sold for $252,000 in September 2018.
Glencoe Mill Village is a little gem on the Haw River just north of Burlington. Built in the 1880s, it has been beautifully restored to life. Its 30-some houses comprise one of the most intact mill villages still standing in North Carolina. The houses themselves have been renovated and in many cases sensitively expanded.
Saturday will be a good day to visit Glencoe: Four homes are currently on the market, and three will have open houses. Realtors with listings in the village join together to hold open houses one Saturday per month. Take N.C. 62 north from downtown Burlington, and Glencoe is about three miles up the road at the Haw River.
Have you ever said to yourself, “I’d like to buy a million-dollar mansion in Irving Park, but what would I do with 8,000 square feet?” Who has enough furniture?
Maybe the house you’re looking for is 1915 Granville Road, a 1936 Georgian that has the luxury of an Irving Park mansion wrapped up in a tidy 2,600 square feet. The price is $839,900, which works out to $321 per square foot, right up there with the neighborhood’s finest mansions.
Update: The house sold for $335,000 on November 3, 2017.
South Elam Avenue between Walker Avenue and Spring Garden Street has a couple of two-story Victorians standing up among the bungalows that line the street. 808 South Elam is the larger of the two at just under 3,000 square feet, and its $355,000 price tag ($121/square foot) makes it an outstanding value in Lindley Park.
Update: The house sold for $225,000 in September 2017, and then for $429,000 in July 2018 after it was renovated..
If you want a real steal on a classic home, Sunset Hills isn’t usually the place to look. 2412 Sylvan Road may be an exception. It’s on the market for $249,900; at 2,020 square feet, the price comes to $124 per square foot. That’s the lowest price per square foot among the five vintage houses now for sale in the neighborhood (ranging from $139 to $178) and among the 12 that have sold this year (which have ranged up to $187).
Update: The house sold for $1.025 million in September 2018.
There are other mansions in Fisher Park, but perhaps none of them make the statement the Douglas-Ravenel House does. Overlooking over the park with its towering columns and Neoclassical facade, its says prominence and grandeur in a way that can’t be missed.
Update: The house sold for $228,000 on November 1, 2017.
409 Westdale Place sits off the beaten track (Walker Avenue) in an unusual little corner of Lindley Park. The street runs one block from Walker north, ending just before it reaches South Lindell Road, so there’s no through traffic. The owners of 409 Westdale also own the undeveloped lot on Longview Street immediately behind their house, which is included in the sale (several neighbors on Westdale also own the undeveloped Longview lots behind their houses). It’s an interesting little spot.
Update: The house sold for $60,000 on July 7, 2017, one month after it went on the market. After a thorough renovation, the house sold for $250,000 on September 11, 2019. It had been listed for $242,000.
507 Park Avenue looks like the best opportunity in Greensboro right now for a buyer who wants to give a historic home a thorough restoration. While the Zillow listing has no interior photos, it includes a quick video walk-through that provides a good idea of its condition (screenshots below).
Update: The house sold for $250,000 on July 31, 2017.
603 N. Church is the most intriguing home for sale in Greensboro’s historic districts. It’s a striking house — you don’t often see a granite Craftsman — set well back on its lot, which is not uncommon in Fisher Park.
It’s on the market for $275,000. Built in 1914, the house has three bedrooms, two bathrooms and an attached studio apartment. There’s a deep, tiled front porch. The front door opens into a large living room with a fireplace and exposed-beam ceiling. The door frames and other woodwork are unpainted. The living room and dining room have built-in window seats; there are built-in shelves in the finished attic. The rooms are spacious, particularly on the first floor. The square footage is listed on Zillow and other sites as 1,926, but county property records say 2,696 (the real-estate listings don’t include the finished attic or the apartment). The lot is just under a half acre.
Update: The house sold for $274,500 on June 23, 2017.
How can this house be on the market again? In the past six years, 500 S. Mendenhall Street has been put up for sale three times without success. Now it’s available for a fourth try, this time priced at $285,000 ($110/square foot). Which would seem a rock-bottom price for a Queen Anne gem.
Update: Miramichi sold for $650,000 on October 31, 2019.
“The Kellenberger Estate is significant in the history of Guilford County, North Carolina, as an uncommon and largely intact example of a property transformed from a vernacular nineteenth-century farm into a country estate in the Colonial Revival and relaxed, naturalized style popular in the 1920s.”
Miramichi, the Kellenberger Estate near McLeansville, was put on the market last week at an asking price of $849,000. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1994 in recognition of both the house and its remarkable 32-acre grounds. Its period of significance was 1921-44. The address is 1415 Kellenberger Drive.
Update: The house sold for $238,000 on May 12, 2017.
The phrases “split level” and “one of a kind” almost never go together. Creativity and flair were of little interest to the great bulk of homebuyers in the ’50s and ’60s. 900 Forest Hill Drive is an exception.
This 1955 split level offers a break from ’50s conformity. The sloping roof gives it an altogether different profile from typical split levels. Even though the interior displays the familiar smaller windows and lower ceilings of post-war style, the home’s horizontal fireplace and built-ins are a break from split-level blandness as well.
The spring home-buying season has gotten off to a fast start, particularly in Irving Park, Lindley Park and Sunset Hills. Two Irving Park homeowners have accepted very quick offers. 607 Woodland had been on the market for three days; the asking price of $999,000 works out to an impressive $312 per square foot. 1104 Sunset Drive (asking $569,000) had been on the market just four days before an offer was accepted.
In Sunset Hills, we have eight current pre-1950 listings, and six of them went under contract in March. 309 Woodbine Court ($394,900) accepted an offer in two days; 1808 Rolling Road ($400,000), seven days; 2206 W. Market ($618,000), nine days.
In Lindley Park, we have six current listings; four went under contract in March. 2611 Sherwood Street ($164,900) had been on the market two days; 803 Longview Street ($264,000), three days; and 2514 Walker Avenue ($225,000), 34 days.
The hot item in College Hill has been townhomes in the Wafco area. Four came on the market between February 22 and March 16; all four were under contract by March 27.
Listings are at premium in the historic districts. Aside from the townhouses under contract, College Hill has only two houses and a Wafco Mills condo on the market. Just four Fisher Park houses are listed, and two are under contract. An offer was accepted on 700 Magnolia Street ($195,000) after two days on the market. In the newly renamed Dunleath Historic District, only four houses are the market, all smaller homes priced $175,000 or lower.
The market for classic mansions in Sedgefieldis tight and moving at a pace as stately as the homes themselves. Only three older homes are on the market, all at least 4,000 square feet and on the market at least nine months. Prices range from $425,000 to $2.9 million.
Greensboro homebuyers looking for the character and quality of older homes no longer have to search through the hundreds of McMansions and subdivision homes in MLS or Zillow listings to find the classic homes they seek.
GSOHistoricHomes.com brings together real estate listings for pre-1950 homes in Greensboro’s three historic districts, vintage neighborhoods, and the smaller towns and communities in Guilford County.
Highlights of current listings range from an 1852 home on the National Register of Historic Places and a $2.9 million 1935 mansion to affordable fixer-uppers suitable for first-time home buyers.
In addition to Greensboro’s three historic districts — College Hill, Fisher Park and Summit Avenue/Charles B. Aycock — the site includes pages for the classic neighborhoods of Irving Park, Lindley Park, Sedgefield, Sunset Hills and Westerwood. Listings are also included for older homes in other neighborhoods throughout the city. Current listings feature homes in the Asheboro Community, Clinton Heights, Glenwood, Lake Daniel, Latham Park and Southmont neighborhoods.
In Guilford County’s smaller towns and communities, many older homes come with acreage. Listings on the site now include homes in Gibsonville, Julian, Monticello, Pleasant Garden, Sedalia and Whitsett.
Listings are drawn from a variety of sources. Listing agents are encouraged to email their listings of pre-1950 homes in Greensboro and Guilford County to the website. There is no charge to be listed.