July 24, 2024
Property

We Featured It, Now What Happened To This Hot Property?


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PHOTO BY DYLAN GENTHNER, EXPOSURE IT

Each week of 2023, we brought you a different Hot Property — from small affordable homes to grand estates and historical gems

But what makes a buyer fall in love with one of the one-of-a-kind homes we featured? Sometimes it’s the price or location, while other times nostalgia and emotions drive a purchase. Here’s what one family had to say after moving into their Hot Property, a North Side townhouse with a long and storied history. 

Built in 1893 by the Searight family, 1232 Resaca Place was listed for $515,000 by Danielle Graham Robinson of Berkshire Hathaway and sold for just under $540,000 in November. The home, lovingly updated while retaining much of its original charm, caught the eye of Glenn and Martha Watson — who had been looking for a home in the area for two years. 

Moving from their native Michigan to Pittsburgh, the Watsons say they wanted to get to know their new city before making any big home decisions. 

“We had never been to the city before and it has taken us a while to understand its neighborhoods,” says Martha. “We have rented in Shadyside for the past seven years and finally wanted to put down roots and settle into our own home again.” 

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PHOTO BY DYLAN GENTHNER, EXPOSURE IT

Teaming up with Lee Ann Montesino of Coldwell Banker for their search, the couple looked at more than 50 homes in various neighborhoods, among them Shadyside, Highland Park, Point Breeze, Squirrel Hill, Mt. Lebanon, Southside, Fox Chapel and the Mexican War Streets; several times they lost out on a listing in the competitive market. 

Finding their new home was due to luck — and  good realtors. 

“We seriously considered a house across the street on Resaca, but it was a little small since we need two home offices,” says Martha. 

The listing agent, though, did a great job of selling the family on the neighborhood as a whole. 

“When 1232 Resaca came on the market, we jumped at the chance to see it and actually looked at it twice the first day it was shown and submitted an offer the next day,” Martha says. “It was a competitive situation, and we feel extremely fortunate that it was our offer that was accepted.”

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PHOTO COURTESY THE WATSON FAMILY

Glenn says the home’s intact, Richardson Romanesque-style architecture attracted him. The revival design, which incorporates 11th and 12th century southern French, Spanish, and Italian Romanesque characteristics, was a prominent style in Pittsburgh in the era in which the home was built — although time and renovations have changed many of them. 

“This style is stately and solid and has a sense of permanence, which we will do our best to maintain,” Glenn says. 

Some of the other things that drew the couple to the home are the pine and oak floors, leaded glass, detailed woodwork and original fireplaces. They plan to make several of the eight fireplaces functional once again, and also hope to repair the dumb waiter.

“Other than shoring up a few infrastructure things and freshening up the paint, we don’t plan any major renovations at this time,” Martha says. 

Just as the home’s previous owners shared, the Watsons already know the neighborhood is just as special as the home itself. 

“We are looking forward to “Stoop Party” season once spring approaches, as apparently this is a way many War Street neighbors connect casually,” says Martha. 

About: Central North Side
Population: 2,686
Planes, Trains & Automobiles: Residents of the Mexican War Streets in Pittsburgh’s Central North Side neighborhood enjoy easy access to all of the city’s main arteries. From this home, residents can also catch regular Pittsburgh Regional Transit buses and can walk or bus to the North Side’s T stops. It’s also a 20-minute drive to the airport via Interstate 376.
Schools: Pittsburgh Public Schools (pghschools.org)
Neighborhood: The Central North Side neighborhood is an extremely walkable and pedestrian-friendly community with abundant restaurants, coffee shops, bars and retail stores. There’s a farmer’s market on Friday nights and regular festivals that bring entertainment and vendors to the community. There are two public elementary schools in the Central North Side neighborhood that residents can walk to as well. Other community destinations include multiple museums, the National Aviary and Randyland

Neighborhood data provided by Niche.

Meg St-Esprit is a Bellevue-based freelance journalist who covers real estate, lifestyle, education, parenting and travel for a variety of local outlets including Pittsburgh Magazine, PublicSource, Kidsburgh, Pittsburgh City Paper, and City Cast Pittsburgh. Meg offers Hot Property, an inside look into unique and historic homes on the market. Each week, Hot Property goes behind the For Sale sign to share the story of a special Pittsburgh-area home.





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