Street Lined with History - Page 2

Rodney Walker’s historic oceanview home on ‘Case Study House row’ is up for sale
Fridays on the Homefront
Fridays on the Homefront
Fridays on the Homefront

"You could easily build another house without imposing in any way on the Rodney Walker house," said Langen, who represented the current owner of the West House when the property last sold in 2015. The realtor said the owner is in the fashion industry and is moving to New York after spending tens of thousands on a design for the adjacent space that is part of the offering.

"I think the best part is the placement of the house, the orientation to the view," he said of the home's southwestern direction. Asked if the house needs any work, he answered coyly, "Well, that's in the eye of the beholder. It's currently renting for $20,000 a month, so I would argue 'no.'"

"To restore it to museum quality, I think that would cost about a million, so I'm told," he conceded, noting that about a quarter of that would be updating the kitchen and baths. "It still feels like it's pretty original."

The realtor said the West House sustained some damage in the 1994 Northridge earthquake that was repaired with a loan secured by the L.A. Conservancy. That work included the addition of a retaining wall as well as the third bed and bath.

Langen said this is the most historic house he has ever listed, noting, "I think the fact that this is a Case Study house really makes it on its own level."

He admits, however, that its architectural history was actually a secondary factor in pricing the property, which last sold three years ago for $6.5 million.

"I think it's at lot value, to be honest with you," he explained with reference to the $10 million price tag. The goal, he said, is to find someone who appreciates its history.

"It has not been landmarked," he said regarding the house's lack of legal protection against demolition. "We're going to need someone who understands the property, has intelligence, [and] has taste."

As for whether the home might be open to the public during its marketing, Langen was unsure.

"Conventional channels of finding a buyer for this house aren't necessarily going to work," he explained. "I don't know if that's going to include open houses."

For more information on the West House, click here.