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Saturday, January 30, 2010

728 Windsor Lane - Old Town Renovation Project - Key West

728 Windsor Lane - Old Town - Key West

Room for a pool behind 728 Windsor Lane
728 Windsor Lane as it appeared in 1965 (above) and today (below)

728 Windsor Lane - Old Town - Key West

Similar home on Petronia Street undergoing remodel today

Similar home (but larger in size and with pool) on Carey Lane that is priced at $1,150,000

The listing Realtor describes 728 Windsor Lane thus:
"If you are a ready-to-act buyer who has been waiting for the chance to live in the charm district of Key West, this may be the house that causes you to take immediate action. While small, it is difficult to find a home in this area for under $300,000. The house has a great private shady yard with room for a small pool. On the weekends, you can look forward to Operation Recharge. Sleep in on Saturday morning, drink your coffee, and relax. In the afternoon, jump on your bike and ride around and enjoy the tropical ambiance. It's thrilling to live so close to the heart of Key West music and entertaining district. There is some work to be done but for the size the price is a fit!"
This two bedroom house has 654 sq ft of living space and sits on a 1279 sq ft lot 1/2 block from the top of Solares Hill, the highest point on the Island of Key West. 728 Windsor Lane is offered at $260,000 or $398 per sq ft. The property is tenant occupied and we need at least 24 hours advance notice to see this property. I'm neither an architect nor builder, but I came up with a plausible plan to renovate this house in such as keep the historic facade intact but that would allow a new owner to totally redo the inside to create new living spaces that meet today's lifestyle.

My idea is to remove all existing interior walls, doors, and windows. Repair the foundation as necessary and reconfigure the house with a large bedroom with ensuite bath at the front. Create a new side entrance on the west side of the house with entry into the new living-dining-kitchen areas at the rear. A door off the kitchen would permit guests to use the bath without going into the bedroom area. The existing structure is a double sawtooth with an addition at the rear. I would remove the existing ceiling and create new vaulted ceilings throughout. New French doors would be added to the rear of the house that would open onto the rear deck and pool. I have seen similarly sized and styled homes have been renovated in similar fashion. Local contractors have done lots of houses like this. I cannot say everything I suggest will work or would get approved by HARC or the city planning department. And I cannot guarantee the price of the work. But this only a 650 sq ft property. I just have difficulty believing construction could go beyond $150,000.

728 Windsor Lane is not a big house for starters, and you can't grow the house much larger. But you could immensely improve the structure and the space. The location is great. There is a neighborhood grocery 1/2 block away. Duval Street is three blocks to the west and the Historic Seaport is five blocks to the north. You could walk to just about any spot in Old Town in about ten minutes or less. There are two other houses in the Old Town area priced under $260,000. GO HERE to compare all three. Those two houses are both short sales. 728 Windsor Lane is not. That means you will know that you are getting the house for the price you negotiate and that you will not need months of waiting for some "negotiator" or should I say "procastinator" to decide if you get to buy your place in Paradise.

I did another comparison of single family homes under 800 sq ft in Old Town. I did not put any price limit on my search, but I did look for houses that have been renovated and that have pools. The only one is a house I wrote about a week ago at 812 Johnson Lane. CLICK HERE to see what you can get for $499,000.

The Red "X" marks the spot where 728 Windsor Lane is located
CLICK HERE to read more about 728 Windsor Lane. Please call me, Gary Thomas, 305-766-2642 to arrange a showing on this special little house. I am a full time Realtor at Preferred Properties Coastal Realty, Inc. in Key West, Florida.


Anonymous said...

I do really like the location and price, Gary! I seem to remember this house being for sale for quite a while, though. Wasn't there some kind of problem with it?

Gary Thomas said...

It is rented right now and it looks nice. But it needs a lot of work. It needs gutted and redone.

It can stay like it is for a few more years, but most second home owners would not pick this house as their getaway in its present condition.



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Gary Thomas in a Nutshell

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Key West, Florida, United States
I first read about Key West in a magazine called "After Dark" sometime in the mid 1970's. But it wasn't until March 1984 that I made my first visit to the island that would become my home. I had two weeks for a vacation and reserved a room at Colours Guesthouse (now Marrero's Guest House) for one week. I thought that if I didn't like Key West, I could always go back to Miami or Ft. Lauderdale for the rest of my trip. But after a couple of days in Key West, that was no longer a consideration. But when I wanted to extend my stay for the extra week I found there was no room at the inn. The guesthouse owner did find me a room at LaTeDa, the infamous guesthouse/restaurant. That's a story I'll write another day. But those two weeks in Key West gave me the realization that I had found Paradise. Key West has been my home since 1993 and my only regret is that it took me so long to get here. I am a full time Realtor at Preferred Properties CRI. Let me help you find your new home or business in Paradise. Living in Paradise is not a slogan, it's a way of life.