It was 1987. A friend of mine lived in a brand new house in Cumberland Hills. It was gorgeous and seemed huge to me. I lived in a Bungalow in the first block of Kenwick. His parents paid $148,500. Two years earlier my parents paid $58k.
Today, if equally updated, the Cumberland Hills house might be worth $300k. Our 1920s bungalow would pull around $400k.
My how things change.
Lexington has always been a town of either older or newer houses. You had Chevy Chase and Ashland Park if you wanted a nice older house. You had Greenbrier and Westmoreland if you wanted to pretend you lived in the country. Everything else was generic new construction of various price ranges or older affordable houses. You didn’t see much variety of prices within a neighborhood either. If Lexington was a plate of food, it was the plate of that person we all know who doesn’t like any of their food to touch.
Today, it seems like it is okay for the peas to touch the carrots and some of the gravy to run on the roll.
An incredibly renovated house on Lakeshore Drive listed for $1,200,000 sells as soon as it hits the market and it is surrounded by mostly $500-600k houses.
A house on Townley in Meadowthorpe sells for $275k. This is one of the highest prices EVER in Meadowthorpe. Townley had always been the most affordable street in the neighborhood.
The renovated houses on Rand Ave sell for about $170 a square foot. Very little of Lexington gets that kind of money per square foot.
There is more and more interest in living downtown.
The north end of Lexington seems to be losing it’s stigma as being the “Bad” side of town.
The Hamburg area seems to be equal to the southwest side of Lexington in terms of housing stock, good performing schools and retail/dining/entertainment.
I think all of this is a good thing. I think there are a lot of factors driving all the change in the market, all happening at once. We’ve got first time Millennials transforming downtown and several affordable north end neighborhoods. Downsizing boomers are wanting smaller homes closer in town, selling their bigger houses on bigger lots to Gen Xers. The market is good. People are in a mood to move. We’ve almost run out of room to build, so we are seeing more of an interest in renovating existing houses.
Who knows….maybe in another 30 years that Cumberland Hills house may be worth more than my old Kenwick house again?