09/19/16 11:30am

435 Hawthorne St., Westmoreland Historic District, Montrose, Houston, 77006

The once-white house at 435 Hawthorne — where a young LBJ stayed rent-free with his Uncle George in his early 1930’s pre-politickin’ teacher days — is up for grabs again. The 2-story 3-bedroom at the corner with Garrott St. (half a block east of Taft) is back on the market as of just under 2 weeks ago for just under $750,000. The Westmoreland Historic District home was sold back in 2012 for $266,000 and change, and most recently went for about $535,000 in 2013 (post flip-ready redo).

What’s new this time around? You can look for yourself at some of the new finishes in the click-and-drag 360-degree photo tour set up by the current sellers, including some rotate-in-place views inside what’s advertised as a use-it-or-rent-it garage apartment suite out back. The new sales site also notes that the back yard has been redone with an easy-to-please spread of artificial lawn:


Westmoreland Historic District Modern Updates
09/12/16 10:45am

Redo of 3618 Burlington St., Westmoreland Historic District, Houston, 77006

3618-burlington-29What’s that — up in the air, over Westmoreland and Spur 527? According to a reader, it’s the skeletal remnants of 3618 Burlington St.’s sideyard billboard, which has been coming down since some time late last week. The sign structure is shown on its last leg in the snapshot up top from Saturday morning (that’s out of 3 legs originally, as seen in the listing photo below that from the 2015 sale). Per the newest listing, the full interior and exterior blankout and makeover of the 3-story Westmoreland Historic District home should have finished up around last Friday.

Photos: Swamplot inbox (top), HAR (bottom)

Sign of Steel
08/26/16 11:30am

Redo of 3618 Burlington St., Westmoreland Historic District, Houston, 77006

3618-burlington-31That Burlington St. mansion nestled in along the 527 Spur leading from Downtown to 59 is back on the market this week, though the listing implies that the interior redo and whitewashing is still in progress. The house, built between 1897 and 1908 depending on who you ask, went up for sale in the Westmoreland Historic District early last year for $1.8 million. The current owners bought the property that summer for $880,000 and quickly sent an application to the city’s history folks asking for approval to move some doors and windows around, as well as to add a deck out back and a balcony outside the existing second-story doors to nowhere in the master bedroom. (The bricks, already painted brown, appear to have been painted white instead, as has most of the interior.)

The property is now listed at a smidge under $2.4 million. Not pictured or mentioned in the new listing is the 3-post freeway billboard previously seen sunning itself by the pool on the northern end of the front yard, shown below as it appeared in the old listing:


Remaking History
05/05/14 4:30pm

15-HOME WESTMORELAND PLACE DEVELOPMENT CLEARS HURDLES, MORE TREE SPACE Sign for Masterson Oaks at Westmoreland, Westmoreland Place, HoustonWhen last we left the 0.83-acre lot tucked up against Spur 527 between Marshall and Alabama St. (catty corner from the Broadstone at Midtown second block), developer Carnegie Homes was seeking city approval for a variance for reduced setbacks from the spur and Alabama St. The variance was approved last November; the site plan, which lays out space for 7 homesites within the Westmoreland Historic District (on the north portion of the property) and another 8 tighter townhome lots on the free-range southern end, has been adjusted slightly to allow a 5,000-sq.-ft. promenade and private park area leading up to and surrounding the enormous live oak tree (branches visible in the above photo) near the property’s northwest corner. A new sign announcing the development went up last week. It’s been renamed a couple times too. The former Carnegie Oaks at Westmoreland — described on the company’s website as The Oak at Westmoreland — is now Masterson Oaks at Westmoreland, Carnegie’s Arpan Gupta tells Swamplot, after the Masterson Mansion that stood on the site as recently as the 1950s, but was torn down after the spur bisected its grounds. Gupta is still seeking approvals within the Westmoreland historic district for a reduced setback along Marshall St. [Previously on Swamplot] Photo: Swamplot inbox

07/19/13 2:00pm

KEEPING ONE MONTROSE TREE IN RESERVE The developer of those spur-side homes planned for this Westmoreland lot between Marshall and W. Alabama St. says that the old live oak shown in the photo isn’t going anywhere. In fact, Arpan Gupta tells Swamplot that a 1,410-sq.-ft. reserve area — as one commenter notes on the site plan — is being established around the tree’s “drip line” to set aside a park that not just the homeowners will be allowed to use. Additionally, explains Gupta, architecture firm Knudson and tree service Arbor Care have both been employed to take protective measures — mulching, fertilizing, fencing, etc. — during the “stress of construction.” [Previously on Swamplot] Photo: Allyn West

07/17/13 10:00am

Note: Read more about that tree here.

The sign shows that a variance is pending to reduce the setback here along Spur 527 — at left in the photo above — the better to fit 15 single-family lots on the less-than-an-acre property between W. Alabama and Marshall St. in the Westmoreland Historic District. A site plan included in the variance application for the subdivision Carnegie Oaks at Westmoreland shows that the 0.83-acre lot would be parceled out, with driveway access to the north from Marshall and to the south from W. Alabama. The lot’s right across the street from that fixed-up former Skylane complex the Spur. A city rep says that the planning commission will decide on the variance next week.


02/06/13 9:30am

LBJ wuz here: Built in 1904, this 3,161-sq.-ft. home on the corner of Hawthorne and Garrott in the Westmoreland Historic District gave the future president a place to crash in 1931 when he was teaching public speaking and coaching the debate team at Sam Houston High School.

In March 2011, the house was put on the market for the first time in 90 years; the price climbed to almost $619,000 that June. It sat for a year, going for just under $285,000. Renovations began that summer. And the house returned 9 days ago with a new MLS number, new photos, and a new historically low — for this place, anyway — price: $569,900.


07/25/12 3:38pm

Here’s an idea: How about buying that old rundown Houston house where President Lyndon Johnson lived in the early 1930s that nobody seems to want, then trying flip it for more than twice the price? Great idea, but you got beaten to it.

The 1904 farmhouse-style structure on the corner of Hawthorne and Garrott in the Westmoreland Historic District was snatched up for less than $285,000 this past March — about a year after it first went up for sale (for a significantly higher price). As of mid-June the home is back on the MLS, with a few photos of the renovation-in-progress to spur interest. What could the would-be flippers do to the place that would bring in a price around, say . . . $619,900?


06/15/11 2:38pm

The white house at the corner of Hawthorne and Garrott in the Westmoreland Historic District where Lyndon Johnson lived for a couple of years in the early 1930s got a $50,000 price cut at the beginning of this month: It’s now for sale for $375,000. Johnson came to town to teach public speaking and business arithmetic at the old Sam Houston High School downtown; he shared a room in the house with his Uncle George. By the end of 1931, the future president had moved to Washington to become a secretary to newly elected congressman (and King Ranch heir) Richard Kleberg.


05/07/10 11:52pm

Unfazed by Swamplot’s now 0-and-2 record in promoting local Apartment Therapy design contest submissions (no, that Venue Museum District apartment we showed last week didn’t get too far either), reader Chris Nguyen writes in to ask for votes in the finals of that website’s Small, Cool 2010 design contest. That’s right — entries in 4 divisions have been whittled down to Nguyen’s 450-sq.-ft. Westmoreland district apartment shown here (originally entered in the “Tiny” division) and some other dude’s Brooklyn flat from the “Little” division that’s more than a third larger. The final voting takes place this weekend. Can this tiny Houston pad win it all?

Win or lose, we hope to reveal a bit more about Nguyen’s certifiably small living space later. For now, though, have a look at these pics and the floor plan:


03/17/09 2:28pm

A reader sends a couple photos of “what will soon no longer be a nice understated commercial building” at 315 W. Alabama, just south of the Westmoreland Historic District west of Midtown:

I watched the remodel work inside going on for a while and was a little shocked to see the brick facade receiving prep work to be refaced in stucco. You can see the nice bit of decorative garland in the process of being knocked off by the end of today.


11/06/08 8:48pm

Neighborhood Guessing Game 31: Living Room

Your votes are in! And the winners weren’t: Eastwood (with 3 guesses), Woodland Heights, the Heights (2 guesses), Winlow Place, West University, Midtown, south Midtown, between Midtown and the Third Ward, around Elgin and 288, Montrose (3 guesses), Temple Terrace, “close to University of St. Thomas and the Menil,” Tanglewood, Southmore area, Riverside Terrace, Audubon Place (3 guesses), Sixth Ward near Houston Ave., the near Northside (2 guesses), Binz, Eastside, Avondale, Timbergrove, San Felipe/Briar Hollow, Mandell Place, Lawndale, or Lindale Park.

The correct answer was . . . the Westmoreland Historic District. Congratulations to reader tcpIV, who figured it out!

Four honorable mentions this week! The first goes to MariaO, who didn’t seem to make any mistakes . . . until she climbed too high:

Feels like a Montrose duplex to me, built in the 1930s but (mostly) renovated in the early 80s. I remember my grandma having that mediallion tile pattern from the second bathroom in her kitchen around that era.

Could be the north end of Montrose close to Allen Parkway — I’ll go out on a limb and say Temple Terrace.

The next goes to Cathy, who wasn’t too far away either:

1920’s or 30’s: tall ceilings and plenty of pre-AC windows. The kitchen could be an add-on — no original windows — but the door to the pantry makes you think it is in the original location. And I’d guess that the 2nd bathroom is new, or was new in the 70’s.

How many neighborhoods did Houston have in the 30’s? I’ll guess Avondale.

Also JT:

This has the earmarks of a home built around 1928-1935. Lots of remodelling evident from the 1970s kitchen to the garish Spanishesque floor tile in bath number two. The front door looks to be less than ten years old.
Judging from the size of the rooms and footprint, this seems too large for the standard 50′ lot in much of the Heights.
My guess is Mandell Place in Montrose.

Oh, and karen too:

I agree with JT about the timeframe for this house. It’s not quite bungalow style, and the interior fireplace puts it later in the 20th century….high ceilings, too. And it’s built on a pretty high crawl space foundation – see how the fence looks low from the windows! But the narrow moldings say late ’20s or early ’30s to me. Later ’30s had much smaller rooms.

I think it’s weird that the butler’s pantry has a space heater while the kitchen has forced air. What’s that about?

The last time anyone spent any serious money on this house was in the 80s or early 90s when they put in new kitchen cabinets. So this is likely in a neighborhood that’s seen some tear down pressure in the last decade or so, making many of the above guesses reasonable. On the other hand, the place is in good shape, telling me that the sellers aren’t sure if it’s a teardown or a remodel. Perhaps the previous owners simply lived on a budget and couldn’t afford the excesses of the ’90s and ’00s.

There was more than met the eye with this one: