Best Home Sleuth: The Official Nominees

Note: Voting for the Swampies has ended. See the bottom of this post (above the comments) for a link to the results!

If you’ve been playing or following along with Swamplot’s weekly Neighborhood Guessing Game contests, now’s your chance to honor one of the top players. Who is Houston’s Best Home Sleuth? The official nominees for this category in the Swamplot Awards for Houston Real Estate have been chosen!

You can vote in the comments section below — or (if you’d rather not play favorites with competitors) confidentially, in a private email to Swamplot. More rules about voting — including a few suggestions about campaign strategy, if you’re rooting for a particular nominee — are on our voting guidelines page. All votes must be in before midnight, December 28th.

The nominees for Best Home Sleuth are . . .


Well, hold on. This award is meant to recognize the Swamplot reader who’s the best at playing the Neighborhood Guessing Game. Who’s best at figuring out the actual location of a Houston-area home simply by studying photographs of the interiors?

To help you decide how to vote, we’ve thrown in a sample comment from one of the contests from each nominee — completely out of context, of course. If you want to examine all the evidence more carefully before making your decision, feel free to pore through the Neighborhood Guessing Game archives.

And now the nominees:

1. HoustonAreaGuy. Did very well in the first few contests; hasn’t been heard from since:

It’s a large house, easily 4000+ square feet. I could go with 60’s construction as well, except one small detail stands out to me…and it might not mean anything. The hardware on the bathroom door in the last photo appears to be OLD. Not sure if it’s original to the house or something bought at an antique emporium. It really throws me because if the house is as old as the hardware indicates, then it likely isn’t in my first-guess area zip code 77024.

2. karen. Skilled at assembling clues identified by other players.

Low ceilings = either revolutionary war era or after 1945.

No moldings = 60’s thru 80’s

Paneling, fake marble countertops, wrought iron = focusing like a laser on the 70’s, man!

Kitchen, fireplace surround = renovations done about 10 years ago

new master bathroom cabinets, real granite countertop = renovations finished this year to prep this baby for sale

fish bathroom = clearly a redo circa ‘00 – love that sink – but why? why? why?

House plants, clutter, more clutter = older homeowners who remember the 70’s really, really well

Given the clue to imagine this house NAKED – I’m going to go with BEAR CREEK.

3. marmer. The investigator.

Let’s see, a WWII vet would be eighty at least, probably more, maybe even ninety-plus. That would mean the baby-boomer kids are nearing retirement age, the grandkids are young marrieds, and there could easily be a great-grandbaby or two.
No one with a small child or toddler is going to spend any long-term time staying with wheelchair-bound Grandma or Granddad; no need for generic little-kid stuff or any tech besides a phone and TV. I’m also not so terribly convinced about our hunter being a wealthy world traveler. Sure, there are a couple moose and one pronghorn, maybe he had a big vacation to Alaska once. Most of the heads look like good old Bambi’s.

4. Miz Brooke Smith. Calls ’em as she sees ’em:

How generic can one place get? This could be anywhere, any time between 1979 and 2005. Definitely somewhere flood-prone, given all that room-expanding bias tile. And the wood floors in the bedrooms look suspiciously like laminate. Home-Doodle-special builder’s-grade cabinetry, marbuluxe countertops and molding-less nekkid window frames scream 1980’s el cheapo condo, as does the treeless view out the sliding glass patio doors. But where, oh where could this grim pad be? I will defer to fellow Guessing Game contestants to pin the tail on this donkey that could be anywhere in a wide swath from Westpark [counter-]clockwise to 288.

5. tcpIV. To the point, and often dead-on:

Poor Granny. We loved her so. I’m hoping for the Stella Link/Willowbend area – to the east of Post Oak and South of the Loop. She was quite a housekeeper though. Gosh I miss her.

6. Jeff. The enthusiasm shows.

This is nicer than some of the queso we’ve seen before. It looks like a townhouse to me, but not new construction. The cheap looking metal rails on the staircase suggests something from the 70’s. Also, the roof directly above the stairs looks to be a skylight, something we typically dont see with new construction. My guess is its an older place that is situated in a nice area to warrant the cost of new floors, kitchen, etc. I say somewhere around the Museum District.

Who’s the NGG MVP? Add your vote!

Update: The winners have been announced!

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