1413-1415 Swann Street NW.

UrbanTurf’s Unique Spaces series takes a look at properties that could be considered “one-of-a-kind” in the DC area. If you have a home that you think fits the bill, send an email to editor2012@urbanturf.com. See all of our past Unique Spaces articles here.

Gregg Schultz and Joe Riddle live in one of Logan Circle’s most eye-catching homes. But the former garage turned two-bedroom carriage house that the couple will put on the market this Thursday did not always look the way it does now.

Seven years ago, Riddle and Schultz were living near what is now NoMa. The neighborhood at that time was devoid of any retail or restaurants, so the two regularly rode bicycles over to 14th Street to take advantage of the strip’s growing options. On one trip, they passed by a garage in an alley just off the intersection of Swann Street and 14th Street NW that had a for-sale sign in the window. They called and learned that the property was serving as a storage space for Georgetown Furniture, a furniture store that used to be located where El Centro now sits.


“One of the store owner’s sons was living in the garage,” Schultz told UrbanTurf. “But if you went inside, you would never imagine that someone could live there.”

The listing price for the garage, which was essentially a shell, was around $700,000, fairly high even given the housing boom that the country was experiencing at the time. After some negotiating, Schultz and Riddle purchased the property at a heavily discounted price, and then went about transforming the space into a home.


Seven years later, the property feels much more like a New York City loft than a former garage. The front (or rather side) door leads into a large living area and kitchen where industrial elements of the property’s former life hang from the ceiling. Behind the kitchen is the main bedroom with an attached bathroom that the current owners helped design. The kitchen consists of a long polished concrete counter, and cabinets that Schultz built and installed himself. (The built-in coffee and espresso maker conveys.) Off the kitchen is a smaller second bedroom with a Murphy bed and an attached bathroom.

Swann Street garage-loft den

Stairs in the living room go up to the home office, as well as a custom-built walnut ladder that swings down from the ceiling and leads to the home’s most unique feature.

In 2008, Schultz and Riddle installed one of DC’s first residential green roofs. In addition to providing energy efficient insulation, the roof has a garden with various herbs and even a few beehives that an area beekeeper periodically comes and harvests honey from. (Allergic buyers needn’t worry; the beehives will be gone by the time the home hits the market.)


UrbanTurf was given a sneak peek of the 1,435-square foot home, but buyers on the hunt for something truly unique can check out the listing when it officially hits the market for $735,000 this Thursday.

Address: 1413-1415 Swann Street NW, Carriage House (map)

For more information: Email the Martin and Jeff Group at info@martinandjeffgroup.com