Pat Kennedy - Your Washington, DC Real Estate Connection


The Perfect House But For One Little Thing!

 Last week, I ran out to Fairfax, Virginia to blitz a bunch of houses in two neighborhoods that looked promising for some favorite clients.  And one house was a knock out - a total Wow House.


As I walked down the hall from the living room toward the master bedroom, my pulse quickened!  I felt that adrenalin rush!  You walked up two steps, and through the open door, I saw a wall of windows overlooking a lovely garden.  This was my clients' new master bedroom.  I could feel it in my bones.

Until, that is, I stepped up and went inside.

The bedroom part was great.  It was, um, the master bath!  There was no wall between the bedroom and bath!  It was all just, you know, there!

Now, I don't know about you, but I don't have any ex-husbands or ex or current sweeties that I could feel comfortable with unless there was a big old wall between me and them and the John!  


The owners were home, and asked me what I thought.

It turns out their agent told them they really needed a wall or people would think they were weirdss.  

"Listen to your agent," I suggested.

I'm showing the house.  I think it may be "the one'.  But I'm really going to have to prepare my clients for that one little quirk! 

Comment balloon 20 commentsPatricia Kennedy • November 10 2007 08:54AM


I have never seen such but it does sound like an easy fix....Sellers, please listen to your agent. This is weird!
Posted by Gary L. Waters Broker Associate, Bucci Realty, Fifteen Years Experience in Brevard County (Bucci Realty, Inc.) almost 13 years ago

Hi Patricia,

I agree with you, sellers should listen to their agents, it is very important. We are the the professionals. Good Luck!!!!!!!!!

Posted by Anthony Stokes-Pereira, Realtor (Better Homes and Gardens Rand Realty) almost 13 years ago
Patricia, "listen to your agent" was probably pretty good advice.  Not everyone will be as uninhibited as the sellers!  In Lancaster County it's not too uncommon to find a "throne" without any walls in the basement of old homes.  I never quite got comfortable with this feature...
Posted by Brian Schulman, Lancaster County PA RealEstate Expert 717-951-5552 (Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, Lancaster PA) almost 13 years ago

I ran into exactly the same situation with a house in our market. The bathroom was a part of an addition to the house and was quite well done...except for a wall to divide it from the bedroom. The house was excellent until we hit that point. After that, my client didn't even want to look any more. You can always recommend a contractor that they can use to put up a wall, which would be easy enough.

Posted by Andrew Trevino, Wilkes-Barre Homes For Sale (ADT Real Estate) almost 13 years ago
Good advice, and an easy fix. Tell their Reator to get a bid and leave it out or better yet, fix it. How did someone build a room like this ??
Posted by Missy Caulk, Savvy Realtor - Ann Arbor Real Estate (Missy Caulk TEAM) almost 13 years ago
Too funny. As a designer years ago, I put a Roman Tub in the Master Suite but that was as far as I would go. The john stayed behind closed doors. Having things that open might be good for our animals but as humans we learned that modesty is something of a good thing.
Posted by William Johnson, Retired Real Estate Professional (Retired) almost 13 years ago
If the house is otherwise special and fits the clients' needs, and it seems like a simple interior wall addition would be a possible fix, I would definitely show it to my Buyers, with a caveat in advance...
Posted by Mike Jaquish, 919-880-2769 Cary, NC, Real Estate (Realty Arts) almost 13 years ago
Patricia- I have seen this set up before and thought, how uncomfortable I would be. I mean, with kids, you get no privacy anyways, they always need you when you are on the toilet! But give me a wall please! Katerina
Posted by Katerina Gasset, Get It Done For Me Virtual Services (Get It Done For Me Virtual Services ) almost 13 years ago

I've seen a trend toward "open bathrooms," but most of them have a door for the "water closet." If you compare older homes from, say, the late '40s to those constructed today, you will find fewer doors in new construction. Some homes have too many doors to start with -- why do we need all that division? But one door is paramount. 

Posted by Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you (RE/MAX Gold) almost 13 years ago
Master bedroom and master bathroom is one things, but not when they are the same room!
Posted by Rosario Lewis, GRI, SRES - DDR Realty - Orange County, NY (DDR Realty) almost 13 years ago
Why would you design a house this way? At what point in history or in what market did they not know modesty might be important?
Posted by Chip Holmes, Henderson NV Real Estate Appraiser (Eagle Home Appraisal) almost 13 years ago
Patrica, I have seen houses like that in Poinciana. There used to be a builder out here that built  them that way. I never quite figured out why. What a crazy design!!! TLW makes me go down to the corner store:)
Posted by Bryant Tutas, Selling Florida one home at a time (Tutas Towne Realty, Inc and Garden Views Realty, LLC) almost 13 years ago
OMG, a huge pet peeve of mine! It seems that in the 80's in Illinois builders thought that "open floor plan" was a good thing. Ugh. Privacy aside, can you imagine trying to sleep in while your other half was shaving & brushing teeth just a few feet from you? 
Posted by Kelly Sibilsky (Licensed Through Referral Connection, LTD.) almost 13 years ago
Patricia, I had a builder put a 1 foot square pass through opening in the wall next to the toilet on a spec house. When I asked what it was for, he responded saying at his house his wife uses up the toilet paper and doesn't replace the roll. When this happens he just hollers at her until she passes him a roll of toilet paper through the opening. He thought it worked so good for his own house and other buyers might like the feature in their home. 
Posted by KC Coonc, Bellingham Commercial Real Estate (Windermere Real Estate/Whatcom, Inc.) almost 13 years ago

Gary, It's such an easy fix, I can't  believe the sellers didn't just do it!

Anthony, I guess out advice isn't that great unless we can get our clients to take it!

And Brian, I like thrones with doors myself!   

Posted by Patricia Kennedy, Home in the Capital (RLAH Real Estate) almost 13 years ago
you know, I have seen a lot and lived overseas for years, BUT the WC in the bedroom is a bit much! No wall??? Yikes - that would have to be changed!!! Even living alone, who wants that in the bedroom - no wall? They are 'strange' -
Posted by Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor (Charles Rutenberg Realty) almost 13 years ago
I also wonder about the designers/builders/architects who position a bathroom so that you see the toilet when you come in the front door of the house.
Posted by Sharon Simms, St. Petersburg FL - CRS CIPS CLHMS RSPS (Coastal Properties Group International - Christie's International) almost 13 years ago
Hi Patricia:  Ah, yes... the good old "commode out in the open" feature.  I have no clue how builders can actually put together a house like that.  Just a quick side note here.  I was so thilled when the new home I bought four years ago had an "elongated commode."  I told the salesguy I was thrilled about it.  He asked why, and I told him... I liked the "elongated commode" because it went well with my "elongated bottom."  LOL.  He must have laughted for about three minutes.  Cute post Patricia... thanks for sharing.
Posted by Karen Anne Stone, Fort Worth Real Estate (New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County) almost 13 years ago
Pat, somewhere out there is a very uninhibited buyer who would have no problem with the bathroom without walls.
Posted by Eric Kodner, Wayzata Lakes Realty: Twin Cities, Madeline Island (Wayzata Lakes Realty: Eric Kodner Sells Twin Cities Homes) almost 13 years ago

Easy fix.  Used a General Addendum and "Draw in a wall".  Contingent upon sellers building a wall!

--Sounds funny - except when I bought my condo - my agent at the time - did that exact thing - except it was a wall making a bedroom!

Posted by James Downing - Metro DC Houses Team REALTORSĀ®, CRS, GRI, ABR,MRP, MilRes, When Looking to Buy or Sell - Make the Right Move (Real Living | At Home) almost 13 years ago