The strangest and most unusual homes for sale
When Robert and Marguerite Antell told architect James Johnson they wanted to build a fun, artistic home, he handed the couple a coke bottle with a flowering sprig of Queen Anne’s lace. “This is your new home,” he explained. Forty years later the cream-colored pod that they built from his plans hit the market for $1.1 million in Pittsford, N.Y.
The “Mushroom House,” as locals call it, is comprised of five connected “pods,” or housing structures, including two living areas, a patio, a master suite with office, and a guest pod with two bedrooms. More than 10,000 tiles bedazzle the walls, floors and counters throughout. Completed in 1971, the distinctive building has undergone an extensive update and garnered landmark status.
This is just one of 12 unique, unusual and in some cases, downright strange, homes for sale right now in the U.S. With the help of Trulia.com, Realtor.com, Sotheby’s International Realty, Prudential Douglas Elliman Real Estate and Stribling & Associates, Forbes culled through listings nationwide to find their favorite nontraditional abodes that make McMansions look mundane. Prices for the homes they highlight vary from as little as $225,000 to as much as $13 million.
Their list includes a regal church converted into posh condos, including a stained glass-bedecked $1.5 million, three-bedroom unit in western Pennsylvania; a haute houseboat docked in Seattle for $3.45 million; and a $8.5 million Mountain Village, Colo. estate constructed of recycled mining materials and equipped with an enclosed steel and timber bridge.
Such properties don’t always snag buyers (at least not right away). They’re not for everyone. Yet the Mushroom House’s listing agent says the property is enjoying a high interest level. “It’s like you’re living in a sculpture,” explains Rich Testa of RE/MAX Advance, noting that construction of a home like this today would cost upwards of $4 million. “We are marketing it to higher-end buyers and we have done and continue to do email blasts and direct mailings to patrons of the arts.”
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