Teardowns.com Owner Defends Sale of 122-year-old Hinsdale House
Brian Hickey said that if a beautiful home goes up on the property, "you won’t hear anything about the old [house]."
The owner of the company that facilitated the recent sale of a 122-year-old Hinsdale home for redevelopment says the most important aspect about the transaction is not the age or style of the home, but the satisfaction of the buyer and the seller.
Teardowns.com was behind the recent sale of the 206 N. Washington St. property, which got public attention last week when several members of the Village of Hinsdale Board of Trustees voiced disappointment that the home on that land, built in 1890 by a Civil War veteran, was slated for demolition.
Brian Hickey, who founded Teardowns.com in 2001 to connect sellers of property with redevelopment potential with interested buyers, said the house had been on the traditional market for two-and-a-half years with two different agents and had received no offers. A hidden-in-the-back chef’s kitchen and a master bedroom without a bathroom or a closet are among the hard-to-sell interior features of the home, Hickey said.
After the seller decided to list the home on Teardowns.com, the property sold in four days to a Hinsdale buyer interested in redeveloping it.
“The buyer’s happy. The seller’s happy,” Hickey said. “Really those are usually the two most important components.”
The Washington property sold for $1.5 million, Hickey told The Doings last week, which was significantly less than the $2.4 million the seller paid for it in 2005. The Doings reported that before being posted to Teardowns.com, the home had been listed at a price as high as $2.2 million.
“For that kind of money, I think buyers would expect a closet and a bathroom,” Hickey said. “It caused buyers to look at that home and not be overly thrilled about what they’re not getting.”
As far as the community’s attitude toward redevelopment, Hickey said people care more about what goes up than what comes down.
“If 206 is not within the character of the community … there’ll be a huge backlash,” he said. “If it goes up and it’s beautiful, you won’t hear anything about the old [house].”
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