Tag Archives: Key West history

1413 Eliza Street, Key West, Florida 33040—SOLD $460,000.

Planning to retire to paradise in the next few years? Looking to add a Key West property to your income portfolio? Ready to escape to island life? Don’t miss your opportunity to break into the hot Key West real estate market with this charming Old Town rental income cottage.

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Nestled on a quiet block of historic cigar makers’ cottages, 1413 Eliza Street features two bedroom and two baths in 962 square feet of living space, on a 2,453 square foot lot. The long-term rental is configured with a spacious living room, kitchen, bedroom and bath in the front of the home and a one-bedroom in-law suite in the back. With the island’s high demand for long-term rentals, the property is currently leased at an under-market rate of $2,400.00 a month.

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With its quintessential front porch, bricked off-street parking, large covered deck, desirable location, and endless possibilities to make it your own, this priced to sell Key West cottage is not to be missed.

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We will be delighted to give you a private tour of 1413 Eliza Street. Give us a call today!

THE TOWNSEND TEAM
Dean & Keith Townsend, REALTORS®
Keller Williams Key West Compass Realty
333 Fleming Street, Key West, FL 33040
305-942-1369, www.DeanTownsend.com

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“The reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.” Mark Twain

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One week has passed since Hurricane Irma began picking a fight with our beloved island. We are glad to report that the bitch did not win. Life in Key West has not been easy for us over the past seven days. Together, we faced many challenges and overcame countless obstacles. We have witnessed the best of our island community: friends, neighbors and strangers looking out for one another.

Our 1890’s cottage on Olivia Street suffered no damage—although waves of our neighbor’s trees are resting on our fence. As we checked on the places of our friends, neighbors and clients, we found intact homes waiting for their families to return. Texting them images of their standing strong houses brought us a joy we will never forget.

CNN may be reporting that 90% of Key West’s structures are damaged or destroyed, but that is not true. Very, very few of the island’s buildings are in bad shape—and most have gone unscathed. Trees are down everywhere, but our endless summer will breathe new life into our once beautiful tropical canopy.

As our hearts ache for those in the Middle Keys that have lost their homes and livelihoods, the residents of Key West will be here to help them rebuild their lives. As evacuees begin their journey back home, we will welcome them with open arms.

Our corner of paradise might be temporarily down, but it is not out. As Mark Twain said, “The reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.”

—Dean & Keith Townsend, Grateful Key West Citizens

Irma Sign

1127 Packer Street, Key West, FL 33040—SOLD $600,000.

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Strolling by the intersection of Old Town’s Packer and Catherine Streets, you will likely pause to capture an image of the picture-perfect cottage shining on the corner. A Key West souvenir to enjoy for a lifetime, this adorable island home is a dream come true.

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Constructed in 1928, the beautifully renovated and maintained historic shotgun cottage features two bedrooms and one bath in 840 square feet of indoor living space.

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Teeming with casually sophisticated coastal style, the home’s inviting sun-dappled interior features gorgeous hardwood floors and high ceilings.

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The tranquil master bedroom offers a welcome respite from days and nights of tropical adventures.

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Perfect for catching ocean breezes, the shotgun cottage’s architectural design allows air to flow freely through the home.

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Guests will feel more than welcome as they settle into their inviting room for a visit.

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Flowing to the garden, the sunny kitchen’s beachy décor captures the joyful essence of the island’s laid-back lifestyle.

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The 1,687 square foot lot has recently been spruced up with mature tropical plantings, brick pavers, and a convenient irrigation system.

Ideally situated six blocks from Upper Duval Street’s celebrated galleries, dining, and entertainment—and six blocks from Higgs Beach’s shimmering Atlantic waters—you will enjoy easy walking and biking access to the very best of Key West. Stay close to home and savor the cuisine at renowned neighbor eateries; The Flaming Buoy Filet Co., El Siboney Restaurant, and Seven Fish.

Whiling away the hours on the picturesque front porch, visiting with friends and neighbors in the island-style living room, or sharing a bottle of wine with loved ones in the garden, you will undoubtedly come to cherish all your moments spent in this charming Key West vacation home.

—Dean & Keith Townsend, The Townsend Team

Click here to enjoy a virtual tour of this captivating island cottage.

Photo taken by the Property Appraiser's office c1965; 1127 Packer St.; built 1928; Tract 13, Sqr 5, Pt Lot 14

Photo taken by the Property Appraiser’s office c1965; 1127 Packer St.; built 1928; Tract 13, Sqr 5, Pt Lot 14

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SELLING YOUR ISLAND COTTAGE? COLOR IT KEY WEST!

Key West colors first entered the world’s consciousness in the 1970’s, when free-spirited locals began painting their historic cottages a spectrum of tropical hues. Today, buyers looking to purchase their Key West dream cottages expect them to be painted to match the colorful, idealized images that have been imprinted on their minds over decades.

Beautifully painted in Key West colors, the quintessential conch cottage at 1127 Packer Street radiates captivating curb appeal.

Beautifully painted in Key West colors, the quintessential conch cottage at 1127 Packer Street radiates captivating curb appeal.

We have found that our clients respond less favorably to cottages that are painted in the traditional (white with black or dark green shutters) Key West color scheme. They immediately see dollar signs when they strongly feel the necessity to paint a home’s exterior to make it look like the “cute” conch cottage of their dreams.

1127 Packer Street before it was colored Key West.

1127 Packer Street before it was colored Key West.

Although buyers often make the declaration that they are purchasing a property because it makes financial sense, the overriding reason is that it makes emotional sense for them. Frequently used to represent and elicit emotions, colors connect with individuals on a subconscious level. The house colors of Key West have come to represent the island’s lighthearted and carefree lifestyle that is envied around the globe.

Key West colors not only enhance a cottage’s curb appeal, they greatly increase the home’s web appeal. Realtor.com and Zillow.com primarily utilize images to market real estate on the smart phone in the pocket of nearly everyone looking to purchase property. Bland, white or beige, shotgun cottages—that look like they could be easily transplanted anywhere—do not capture the attention of online shoppers looking for their island dream home.

If you are planning to sell your conch cottage, wander around Old Town snapping pictures of the quintessential Key West cottages sporting color combinations that speak to you. The coastal colors that garner a positive response from you, will undoubtedly grab the attention of buyers as well. Pickup a selection of paint chips (with HARC approved historic colors) at Strunk Hardware and play with color combinations over a glass of wine with friends and neighbors. Once you have decided on the perfect color scheme, head over to City Hall to get the painting permit process rolling.

The former white and dark green color scheme on display at 1711 Von Phister Street did not command the attention of potential buyers.

The former white and dark green color scheme on display at 1711 Von Phister Street did not command the attention of potential buyers.

Painted to reflect the scolors of Key West, the cottage's personality shines.

Painted to reflect the soft tropical colors of Key West, the cottage’s personality shines.

When successfully selling any product, you must give buyers what they want. Key West cottage buyers want them to look like their fantasy. Reflect the tropical hues of the island’s sea, sky, and flora in the exterior colors you paint your home, and you will not only capture the imagination of eager buyers, you will get your cigar maker’s cottage sold quickly and for the best price.

We strongly encourage our sellers to color it Key West before they offer their cottages for sale. A tropically painted island cottage makes a winning first impression every time.

—Dean & Keith Townsend, The Townsend Team

TAKE A PEEK INTO YOUR KEY WEST HOME’S PAST

Back in 1965, the Monroe County Property Appraiser’s office took on the arduous task of taking a Polaroid photograph to document every structure in the county. The resulting group of 4,470 architectural images offers an extraordinary glimpse into a time in Key West history just before homes and commercial structures began to be restored en masse. It is surprising (if not shocking) to see how rundown much of the island’s buildings were at the time. The collection serves as a testament to the commitment of countless individuals that have—over the past fifty years—invested their money, blood, sweat, and tears into returning Key West’s historic structures to their previous glory.

Photo taken by the Property Appraiser's office c1965;  1405 Olivia St.; built c1906; Tract 7, Sqr 2, Pt Lot 13

Photo taken by the Property Appraiser’s office c1965; 1405 Olivia St.; built c1906; Tract 7, Sqr 2, Pt Lot 13

1405 Olivia Street as seen today.

1405 Olivia Street as seen today.

The treasure trove of photos was endowed to the Monroe County Public Library in Key West. Luckily, the library has made the entire collection available online at http://bit.ly/keyspix.

Click here to visit the website and you will be able to explore a vast array of historic Keys photographs. The 1965 Property Appraiser’s Polaroids have been grouped together in the album The Way We Were—Key West 1960’s.

You can search for the 1965 picture of your Key West home by clicking on the search icon just above the photographs (not the Flickr search icon at the top of the page). Type in the number and street name only. Do not include Street, Avenue, Lane, etc. Undoubtedly, you will be delighted to see how your home looked over fifty years ago. Download the image to your computer and share it with family and friends. Frame a print and proudly hang it on the wall of your Key West dream home. The peek into your home’s past will surely spark many memorable conversations.

THE TOWNSEND TEAM
Dean & Keith Townsend, REALTORS®
Keller Williams Key West Compass Realty
333 Fleming Street, Key West, FL 33040
305-942-1369, www.DeanTownsend.com

Photo taken by the Property Appraiser's office c1965; 1209 Knowles Lane; built 1920's; Gwynn Sub, Pt Tract 13

Photo taken by the Property Appraiser’s office c1965; 1209 Knowles Lane; built 1920’s; Gwynn Sub, Pt Tract 13

Today, beautifully renovated 1209 Knowles Lane shines brightly.

Today, beautifully renovated 1209 Knowles Lane shines brightly.

Photo taken by the Property Appraiser's office c1965; 719 Eisenhower Dr. aka 720 Eisenhower Dr.; house was originally located on the water @719, c1975 house moved across the street to 720 Eisenhower; Tract 7, Lot 5

Photo taken by the Property Appraiser’s office c1965; 719 Eisenhower Dr. aka 720 Eisenhower Dr.; house was originally located on the water @719, c1975 house moved across the street to 720 Eisenhower; Tract 7, Lot 5

720 Eisenhower Drive has changed a great deal in the last half-century.

720 Eisenhower Drive has changed a great deal in the last half-century.

Photo taken by the Property Appraiser's office c1965; 813 Frances St.; built 1920's; Tract 6, Sqr 4, Pt Lot 10 & 11

Photo taken by the Property Appraiser’s office c1965; 813 Frances St.; built 1920’s; Tract 6, Sqr 4, Pt Lot 10 & 11

Beautiful 813 Frances Street today.

Lovely 813 Frances Street captivates today.

Photo taken by Prpoerty Appraiser's office c1965; 530 Grinnell Street; built 1923; Sqr 46, Pt Lot 1

Photo taken by Prpoerty Appraiser’s office c1965; 530 Grinnell Street; built 1923; Sqr 46, Pt Lot 1

One of the most charming cottages in Old Town Key West, 530 Grinnell Street as seen today.

One of the most charming cottages in Old Town Key West, 530 Grinnell Street as seen today.