This 2-bedroom, 1-bath unit in the Carola Lofts represents a huge turning point in Detroit real estate. Just a few years ago, the Carola, built in 1912, was included in an art photography book called The Fabulous Ruins of Detroit. Before its restoration in 2003, the Carola was a sad sight, full of broken windows and covered in peeling paint. Today, units in the building routinely sell for hundreds of thousands. This 2-bedroom loft has much to recommend it. The building itself is grand, with balconies, a beautifully restored cornice, and pebbled glass doors. The unit has exposed brick, poured concrete floors in a warm amber color, and large, deep-set windows framed in wood casework.
The loft has an open floor plan, framed by concrete columns, and a large dining space that could easily seat a dozen guests. The kitchen is top-of-the line with new stainless appliances, poured concrete counters, and pretty slate tile flooring. The current owners seem to be artists, as there's a studio set up in a large alcove off the kitchen that also houses the unit's washer and dryer. No info on whether the custom-painted cabinets in this part of the loft stay, but they'd be a nice get if so.
The master bedroom is a good size, and even has a niche large enough for an exercise bike. There are chunky wooden shelves built into one bedroom wall that wrap around a corner and make a great display space for tchotchkes and doodads. The stall shower is large, but the single bath lacks a tub. The exposed pipes and ducts aren't particularly attractive, though, nor is the wide-open closet in one bedroom. The listing copy described the unit as "lower level" which seems to translate to "basement," and that's not really a selling point, either. That said, the unit has a lot to recommend it, and the current owners have made it a fun, welcoming space.
The unit's HOA fees are $335 a month, but the unit does come with one secured parking spot and the owners can park a second car in the building's lot, though that parking isn't assigned. We're not sure if Brush Park (even so close to midtown) is really ready for a $325K loft, especially with just the one bath, but a smaller unit in the Carola sold a year ago for $220K, and that was before all the fuss over Ransom Gillis house, and before the M1 Rail had started looking more like public transit than like the craters left after an earthquake.