c. 1890 – Jersey City, NJ – $375,000

Added to OHD on 2/19/15   -   Last OHD Update: 4/12/20   -   54 Comments
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2456 Kennedy Blvd, Jersey City, NJ 07304

Map: Street

  • $375,000
  • 9 Bed
  • 4 Bath
  • 8000 Sq Ft
This property a complete wreck. Has been vandalized & has been open to weather.Received zoning variance to convert to 5 units in 2008. Third party approval required. Best for a visionary developer.
Contact Information
Andrew Elkins, Keller Williams
973.449.6180

State: | Region: | Misc:

54 Comments on c. 1890 – Jersey City, NJ – $375,000

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  1. Kelly, OHDKelly, OHD says: 12421 comments
    Admin

    1901 Folk Victorian
    Chestatee, GA

    I did not find a build date but figured it was mid-late 1890s.

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  2. MW says: 925 comments

    I never have understood why people ever thought it was a good idea to put dropped ceilings in a place like this. Maybe where you might have a 15ft ceiling and you are trying to drop it to 10ft to save on heat, understandable, but still not appreciated. But like here where it is dropped maybe just a foot, I don’t get it. I guess if the house was being used as commercial space and they just had to make it look like a crappy office, again understandable, but still just dumb and why?

    But anyway, looks like the original ceiling is still there and just needs to be refinished. So, that is a good thing. At least they didn’t tear it all up running sloppy ducts, pipes and wires all over the place, hopefully anyway.

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    • Kelly, OHDKelly, OHD says: 12421 comments
      Admin

      1901 Folk Victorian
      Chestatee, GA

      If the agent chose these shots for the house (it’s a short sale so perhaps he didn’t have full access to take photos?) and considered them the good ones, I dread seeing what the rest of the house is like! I agree about the dropped ceiling, I don’t get it.

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    • tiffaney jewel says: 78 comments

      I completely agree about the dropped ceilings thing. If your house is that drafty, fix the draft problem. If you can’t afford that much heat, move to house that is in your budget. Don’t just go and ruin the house you’re in! Such nonsense.

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      • RossRoss says: 2428 comments
        OHD Supporter

        1894 QueenAnneFreeClassic
        Emporia, KS

        It appears that the dropped ceilings were more a quick fix rather than trying to save on heating bills.

        Ceilings in poor condition? Hey, just install dropped NEW ceilings over the weekend!

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    • Steelman says: 1 comments

      MW – Sometimes the ceilings are lowered to allow access to ductwork when installing A/C. Saves lots of “demo” work.

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  3. says: 186 comments

    As I understand it, the house is quite rough. It is funny as I had a company who was interested in me for a position in Jersey City and they had sent over this house. NJ is odd as they do not list houses by actual square footage but by lot square footage. All Realtors have said this is a house that is rough and needs deep renovation. That can be interpreted in so many ways. No other pictures exist I am told but perhaps it is lazy Realtors not doing their work πŸ™‚

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    • tiffaney jewel says: 78 comments

      Agreed that it is a lazy realtor. If they were on their game, not only would they have more pictures than you could dream of, but a detailed feasibility study, so that a potential buyer could see in plain black and white what they were getting into. THAT is how you sell a house.

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  4. Scott CunninghamScott Cunningham says: 396 comments
    1856 Tudor (fmr Victorian)
    Leavenworth , KS

    They will be lucky to get $200K (if that)

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  5. Benc says: 1 comments

    This house used to be a synagogue, which would explain the drop ceilings. It’s in one of the most coveted areas of town. Pretty sure it’s been empty for 15+ years.

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  6. RossRoss says: 2428 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1894 QueenAnneFreeClassic
    Emporia, KS

    The best thing about this house is how close it is to Manhattan.

    There is a Path subway station not far away, and one would be in the Big Apple in 2 stops.

    In Manhattan, a studio apartment is about $500,000.

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  7. John Shiflet says: 5638 comments

    It’s good to learn the location is prime. Compare this house to a similar house in Richmond, IN: http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/2015-E-Main-St-Richmond-IN-47374/115594665_zpid/ Only $25k! While the Jersey City house seems larger and may be in better condition (better location too) $375K vs. $25K is oceans apart. That said, this house looks like it has potential and perhaps has not been too badly abused. More photos would be very helpful, IMO. For contrast, look at the architectural magazine quality photos of the Kendallville, IN house and its being sold for less than $100k higher than this one. Then again, maybe less is more here in that some photos might deter most buyers.

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  8. says: 2 comments

    I’m hopeful my brother might lend his expertise here as he is somewhat of a JC historian.

    I can only imagine what it was like a hundred years ago. What a shame.

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    • MJ35 says: 7 comments

      This house is awesome. However, the location is hardly a “prime” section of Jersey City. Granted, it’s better than some sections, but far from the Downtown gentry. Jersey City is working toward finalizing plans for parts of this neighborhood (West-Bergen/East-Lincoln Park). See this link: http://www.nj.com/hudson/index.ssf/2014/10/west_bergen-east_lincoln_park_historic_district_nominated_for_inclusion_on_the_new_jersey_and_nation.html. Sadly, the house is a wreck. It’s been vacant for years and the last buyer went into foreclosure when he got in over his head (seemed like a really nice guy). The house was not winterized, secured, or maintained whatsoever. People apparently stole the copper off the roof in broad daylight within the last year or so. It’s on Kennedy Blvd, which is a plus, but it’s still on the fringe of some pretty rough neighborhoods (Greenville/Communipaw). All in all, you’d have to get this house for free in order to make it a worthwhile purchase. Really, though, it’s quite magnificent and one of few remaining Golden Age Victorian mansions left on the old Hudson Blvd in one of America’s (former) Industrial Age cities.

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    • Christine Levy says: 2 comments

      Can I get in touch with your brother? I am trying to identify a beautiful old home in Jersey City from around 1900. The architect was E.B. Gumaer.
      Thank you, Christine Levy

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  9. MW says: 925 comments

    Houston, I think we have an answer. If you look at the Trulia listing, it says the 2013 taxes were a whopping $17,523! If that is accurate and was just for 1 year, it is easy to figure out why this house is priced so cheaply when so close to NYC and yet, still nobody seems to want it. The taxes alone are close to $1,500/mo. Add basics things like insurance and min. upkeep in and you are close to $2K/mo. just to own it flat out and clear of any other debt. It is no wonder even a slum lord hasn’t stepped in to get it as another last-step-before-the-streets cash cow.

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    • tiffaney jewel says: 78 comments

      That tax number is very likely correct. When I tell people how much in taxes we paid on our house in NJ, they simply don’t believe me! It has gotten crazy. Jersey City has a lot of ghetto, though it is coming back. Still, I think it’s enough to scare people off, at least the kind of people that would be interested. This is a full-time job, and most folks that could afford this work in NYC and spend most of their day there/commuting, and aren’t looking to come home to such a project.

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  10. JimHJimH says: 5530 comments
    OHD Supporter

    Kelly could be right that the interior photos show the best of what’s left – the structure has been neglected and vandalized for decades. With high local construction costs and lots of bureaucracy a buyer would be into it well over $1MM for a finished product. That might make sense for a local user committed to the community, but it’s unlikely that this would be someone’s dream house. For that kind of money there’s a great variety of wonderful older homes in quiet and safe neighborhoods within easy commuting distance of Manhattan.
    The owner bought the place for $520k in 2007 and was approved for a 5 unit conversion which may not be financeable. After 8 years of payments and taxes I’m not surprised he keeps the window open, perhaps hoping for a more expedient solution to his problem.
    The house behind this one is a beauty also: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/515099276103878884/

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    • RossRoss says: 2428 comments
      OHD Supporter

      1894 QueenAnneFreeClassic
      Emporia, KS

      “the interior photos show the best of what’s left”

      We do not know this.

      A lack of images could just mean a lazy realtor. Or maybe the camera batteries gave out.

      Also, as I have stated above several times, this is no normal property, and thus normal property values cannot be attached to it.

      Why? Because the house is TWO subway stops from Manhattan. Mark my words, Jersey City will be one of the next areas circling Manhattan to be revitalized.

      In Manhattan, $1M gets you a so-so one-bedroom.

      This house is 8,000 square feet. In Manhattan that will cost you, on average, like $16M. And it can cost several times that.

      And even more. Here is an 8,000 sq ft apartment listed at $76M:

      http://www.zillow.com/homes/for_sale/fsba,fsbo_lt/2106323436_zpid/7500-8500_size/zesta_sort/40.762764,-73.937516,40.71015,-74.013734_rect/13_zm/0_mmm/?view=map

      The closer a property is to Manhattan, the higher the value. And this is an ever-escalating value.

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      • JimHJimH says: 5530 comments
        OHD Supporter

        Ross, you’re arguing effectively for the area but not the use. It’s basic Real Estate that the value per SF increases with more smaller units compared to fewer large ones. The choice here is to build 5 units within the existing 8000 SF shell OR redevelop the property for 4 units of about 2500 SF, the more profitable option. The first option might look like the existing building with mostly new material, but wouldn’t be “restored” in our sense of the word.
        There is no evidence of a market for very large single family houses on the Boulevard.

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        • RossRoss says: 2428 comments
          OHD Supporter

          1894 QueenAnneFreeClassic
          Emporia, KS

          Jim, I am unconcerned about maximizing the per square foot value of this home.

          My whole discussion has been trying to point out the real value of the area, and why the house is priced as such.

          Yes, somebody could buy this place and convert it to multiple condos. They will likely do well, and this is the likely purchaser.

          However, if I still lived in NYC, I would not hesitate to look at this house. And if I wanted it, I would keep it as single family. I also have zero doubt that in, say, ten years time, I would do very well in a resale. The closer a property is to Manhattan, particularly with easy commuter rail access, the ever-escalting value.

          Not everybody wants to be squeezed into a 1-bedroom apartment (as many millions are in NYC).

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  11. says: 186 comments

    I talked to the listing Realtors office today and this property is a short sale with a hopeful price of $375K but they expect multiple bidders with the amount of interest in the property. It is expected to go for a lot more than $375K. The place is quite rough and these were some of the best pictures. I told them they were lazy for not giving us more pictures. He laughed a bit and said to come and see it before its gone.

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  12. AnnM says: 40 comments

    I wish I had a time machine to see what this looked like in its hey day.

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  13. says: 186 comments

    In regards to this property being 8000 sq ft, I do believe it is actually smaller as NJ does not go by house size but by lot size. and Realtor says total lot is about 10,200 sq ft.

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  14. Kelly, OHDKelly, OHD says: 12421 comments
    Admin

    1901 Folk Victorian
    Chestatee, GA

    O.M.G. link to photos.

    Just how freaking old were the listing photos the first time?

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    • RossRoss says: 2428 comments
      OHD Supporter

      1894 QueenAnneFreeClassic
      Emporia, KS

      O.M.G. is right!

      Wow, too!

      I particularly like the image with snow in a hallway. One could have their own indoor snowman!

      Still, if one takes the TWO stops to Manhattan, the asking price of this mansion would not even get you a studio apartment.

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    • AnnM says: 40 comments

      WHOA

      Still, I’m such a crazy old house nut that I can see the potential here. With enough money and dedication, anything is possible.

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  15. Kelly, OHDKelly, OHD says: 12421 comments
    Admin

    1901 Folk Victorian
    Chestatee, GA

    Went ahead and added the new listing photos to this post. It appears there was an agent change, guess he had sense enough to use new listing photos and not the apparent mega old ones (think they were from 2007?)

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    • MW says: 925 comments

      Ouch, these new photos sure are rough looking. I’d have to concur with Ross, looks a lot like a gut job. Appears to have had substantial water damage, which means you really need to open up and get inside the walls to properly assess the damage and clean and repair. There is no way this could possibly work as a clean and refinish type of project, even with a Herculean amount of elbow grease. It is really going to need to be stripped down and opened up to repair all the hidden things properly.

      When there is a decent sized pile of snow inside the house, you know it is not going to be a simple job.

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  16. says: 186 comments

    I actually had a conversation with the agents office last week as I need to go out to NJ/NY on Friday. I mentioned to him how lazy the Realtor was and how it would be nice to have some actual pictures. I do not know if this made a difference or not. I had planned to see this property but am now unsure as it is really bad! I am afraid of all that now lives in this house πŸ™‚

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    • Kelly, OHDKelly, OHD says: 12421 comments
      Admin

      1901 Folk Victorian
      Chestatee, GA

      Maybe that did it! Kudos to the new agent, I would have been afraid I’d fall through the floor in a few rooms.

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    • RossRoss says: 2428 comments
      OHD Supporter

      1894 QueenAnneFreeClassic
      Emporia, KS

      Robb, the house looks like a gut job. And I never say that!

      Most people will not see past the decayed, collapsed plaster. But a lot of that damage is recent. As MJ35 wrote above: “People apparently stole the copper off the roof in broad daylight within the last year or so.”

      What I would be interested in:

      1) The condition of the foundation.
      2) Obviously the place needs new roofing. And skylights. But is the roof FRAMING ok?
      3) Is the main stair intact?
      4) How much interior trim, doors, and mantles are intact?
      5) How do I feel about the location? Are the neighbors in good shape (this is THE most important question).
      6) How long does it take to walk to the PATH subway station? Is it a nice walk?
      7) Does the house get good sunlight?

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  17. Scott CunninghamScott Cunningham says: 396 comments
    1856 Tudor (fmr Victorian)
    Leavenworth , KS

    Ross, you are correct. It needs to be gutted. Nothin inside is worth saving at this point except for maybe the fireplaces. The value of the property needs to be determined by the land value alone. The house is worthless, or less (a liability as is, a structure to be razed and removed at some expense, or the shell of a house to be restored at extreme expenses. If it’s in a good neighborhood, with good prospects then saving it is worthwhile. If it’s in a poor neighborhood then chalk this one up to a sad loss of neglect and negligence, and spend your money on a more reasonably restorable property.

    If the foundation, roof, floor joists, and wall studs are ok, then it’s got hope. Those are the bones that this house needs for a possible restoration. If they are shot then the house is gone.

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  18. robb h says: 186 comments

    I tried to see this house in person over the last 2 days. Realtor in same office as listing Realtor. Many promises but no return call or e mail from him today. I have some very strong opinions about NJ and NY Realtors. If I were to post Kelly would ban me on here πŸ™‚

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  19. says: 15 comments

    This doesn’t say much for the people in the neighborhood. Also there ought to be ethics rules for agents. If they know the photo doesn’t accurately depict the property it should not be advertised.

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  20. Lovett says: 1 comments

    I would love to just see a walkthrough video of the place

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  21. Julie says: 1 comments

    This house is across the street from me. I was interested in finding out about it, and Googled Jersey city old houses and this came up. πŸ™‚ It’s still empty.

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    • Kelly, OHDKelly, OHD says: 1109 comments
      Admin

      1901 Folk Victorian
      Chestatee, GA

      I was wondering what was going on with the house. Thanks for letting us know.

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    • JimHJimH says: 5530 comments
      OHD Supporter

      The realtor’s FB page:
      CLOSED Short Sale. 12/10/2015
      2456 Kennedy Blvd, Jersey City, NJ 07394, in Lincoln Park Historic District.
      New owner, a JC restaurateur, intends to restore & use as his family’s home. Congratulations & best wishes to new owner!

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  22. MiaNJ says: 10 comments

    I’ve been lurking on this website for months, but I’ve been an old house fanatic forever. This house is so very sad, and I’m glad that the most recent posts report that it has been sold. Hopefully the new owners won’t ruin its historical value and restore it to the style and beauty it likely had when it was new and loved. I wonder how much it went for? Perhaps some sleuthing may reveal the publicly listed sale price. Mia in NJ

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  23. MiaNJ says: 10 comments

    Well, that was easy! It sold on 12/21/15 for $335K. The owner is going to need at least that much in renovations, and that’s just to make it habitable, probably even more than that. Still a beautiful house, and maybe one day if I’m in the area, I might take a ride by and have a look at it when it’s done. Years from now! πŸ™‚

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  24. DonnaJC says: 1 comments

    The thread on this stopped, but I’ve been kind of obsessed over this house for a while now. If trulia is correct it went for $335K. I hope the new owner can stick with the renovation/remodel. I’ve gone past this house for years wondering if anyone would ever give it a chance to be a home again.

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  25. MJ35 says: 7 comments

    Ditto, Donna. Have you driven past, lately? I used to commute to NJCU every week, but haven’t in about a year. Hoping to hear about/see progress in the coming days! LOVE JC!

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  26. Dennis says: 1 comments

    Nothing has been done to the house. Neighbors use it as a dog run and people are constantly breaking into it. If anyone knows anything else, please post – I can see it from my window and it annoys me everyday!

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  27. Christine Levy says: 2 comments

    the architect for my 1905 craftsman is the same architect for this beautiful home. His name is E.B. Gumaer. I have an exterior and interior photo of this home when it was newly completed. I have the photos posted on my Pinterest board under E. B. Gumaer. It took a while to match these up because the old address is listed as Hudson Blvd. which was later changed to Kennedy Blvd. after his asassination.

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    • My great grandfather, Michael Thomas Connolly owned this house from 1895 until 1926. If I’m not mistaken I believe he was the original builder/owner.
      I am looking forward to seeing your pictures on Pinterest. πŸ™‚
      George Connolly

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