During the recent real-estate boom, developers couldn’t keep pace with the demand for condos in hot neighborhoods. Buildings sold out before ground was broken, and buyers often had to wait a year to move in.
No longer. Developers have postponed new buildings while they try to sell those already built. William Rich of the real-estate research company Delta Associates says more than 75 percent of new condos on the market are move-in ready.
Gone are the days when buyers put down a deposit based on architectural renderings, floor plans, and samples of carpet and countertops. Now condo hunters can test the water pressure in the shower, listen for the clacking of heels in the unit above, and feel the wall-to-wall carpet between their toes.
The number of finished condos also gives buyers bargaining power. “It’s common for developers to offer concessions,” says Ron Smith of Mayhood, a McLean-based condo-marketing-and-sales firm. “Sales conditions are very different now than they were during the boom.”
To lure buyers, developers may throw in a storage unit or parking space, help with closing costs, or reduce prices. The big inventory of finished condos on the market also means that there are lots of options—from boutique condos in historic buildings to hotel-like high-rises.
Here’s a look at six new buildings you could move into today.
City Life in the Suburbs
On Wisconsin Avenue near Bradley Boulevard, the Adagio is a five-minute walk from downtown Bethesda, where lots of shops, restaurants, and office buildings have sprouted around the Metro.
Condos in the 92-unit building—about 25 are still on the market—range in size from 950 to 2,100 square feet and include one-, two-, and three-bedroom units. The design is contemporary, with floor-to-ceiling windows, open floor plans, and modern kitchens with Poggenpohl cabinets. Most units have outdoor spaces.
There’s a fitness center in the building, and a Washington Sports Club is next door. Prices range from $565,000 to $1.4 million and include at least one spot in the underground garage.
Adagio, 6820 Wisconsin Ave., Bethesda; 301-652-1911.
On Top of Metro
When the weather’s warm, Kenyon Square’s rooftop deck fills with sunbathers and friends playing bocce. The size of a city block, the landscaped deck has two grills, tables and chairs shaded by umbrellas, and a handful of Adirondack chairs.
In the center of DC’s Columbia Heights, Kenyon Square is across the street from DC USA, a block-long mall anchored by Target and Best Buy, and directly above the Columbia Heights Metro station. Residents started moving into the 153-unit building in 2007, and about 25 condos are still for sale.
Units range from one-bedrooms with one bath to two-level lofts with two bedrooms. Open kitchens have GE appliances and hardwood floors, and all units come with a washer/dryer and a walk-in closet.
Prices range from the $300,000s to the $600,000s. Spaces in the underground parking garage cost about $35,000.
Kenyon Square, 1390 Kenyon St., NW; 202-332-6477.
In the Heart of Reston
Reston is one of the country’s most successful—and emulated—planned communities, and Reston Town Center lures residents with upscale shopping, restaurants, and an ice-skating rink in winter. Midtown Reston Town Center, a 293-unit condominium completed in the summer of 2007, was the final residential development on the books.
Made up of two 21-story towers, it overlooks Market Street, one of the main thoroughfares in the town center. Each unit has floor-to-ceiling windows and a balcony. Hardwood floors and gas fireplaces are optional.
Amenities include a heated outdoor pool, a fitness center, an 18-seat movie theater, valet parking, and a doorman. Prices, which include a spot in the underground garage, range from $379,000 for a one-bedroom to more than $1 million for a three-bedroom penthouse.
Midtown Reston Town Center, 11990 Market St., Reston; 703-689-0900.