Hot House: 37 Birckhead Street, Baltimore, MD 21230
Former garage, circa 1920, complete renovation, 2011. Original brick construction with recent rubber roof, interior courtyard and two decks. Four bedrooms, four full, two half baths over 3,610 sq. ft. and two levels. Twelve-foot ceilings, Brazilian cherry floors, custom lighting. Double-paned, energy efficient, wood frame windows. Open plan kitchen and living area plus bedroom/office on main level. Central bluestone courtyard with water feature. Large gourmet kitchen with Sub Zero fridge, Wolf range, four-seat granite counter. Second level family room with gas fireplace, custom wet bar, deck off family room. Four en-suite bedrooms, master with 11′ ceilings, custom cabinetry and moldings, spa bath with double vanities, oversized shower. 23′ x 24′ roof deck with wet bar and all-weather pool table. Two-car garage. Zoned heat and central air: $1,000,000 (ask about CHAP tax credit)
What: A million dollars might seem a little steep for a former carriage repair/auto body shop in this unpretentious south Baltimore neighborhood — but step inside. Profiled in the Baltimore Sun back in 2013 when it was sold, this was a high-end flip by the two Knoepfle brothers, Matt and Mike, owners of the construction company Building Character LLC. An unusual amount of creativity went into this project, particularly the notion of an interior courtyard, which floods the house with light despite the small exterior windows. It’s slick enough for urban professionals and comfortable enough for family life, with high-end finishes and nice surprises (paneled walls, wide wooden blinds, custom closets) throughout. In the courtyard, there’s a steel and glass table made from a gear that the Knoepfle’s found in the old garage — a nice touch. Note: the CHAP historic tax credit is significant, offering an $18,000 per year property tax reduction through 2024.
Where: Birckhead Street is at the south end of Federal Hill, although not in the officially designated neighborhood of Federal Hill South, which lies just below Fort Avenue. This house is north of Fort Avenue, between Light Street and South Charles — close, but not too close, to all the Federal Hill action. Riverside Park is a short walk south and west, the Cross Street Market is a short walk north.
Why: Unique property and the ’37 Birckhead Street’ painted sign is genius.
Why Not: All-weather pool table hard to believe…
Would Suit: Washington commuters, UA exec.
NB: This house was bought for $275K in July 2012 and sold for $915K in June 2013.