You might think that a little wedge-shaped house built explicitly to aggravate someone would be a tough sell.
Not in Seattle. Listed at $397,500, the home was just snapped up over the weekend, the real estate agent told Yahoo Homes, after spending only a couple of weeks on the market. "We had quite the interest!" she told us. (A local news story published Tuesday and picked up internationally might have helped the quick sale.)
Locals call it the Montlake Spite House. Legend has it that the home, on a mere sliver of a lot, was built by:
• A woman who won only a bit of yard in a divorce settlement, while her ex got the rest of the property, including the (normal-shaped) house they'd shared. Or ...
• A landowner who was furious when the neighbor who owned the adjacent (normal-sized) lot made him a lowball offer on the sliver. Or ...
• A traveler who, while visiting Germany, gave permission for someone to build on the lot -- with the provision that enough land be left for a second house. When the traveler returned, he discovered that the new house took a lot more space than he'd expected, so, “out of spite, he [the landowner] built that funny little pie-shaped home" as an obstacle, the current homeowner told KPLU-FM's Martha Kang. “I also heard that back when it was first built, the side that was facing the neighbor had been painted black.”
The house at 2022 24th Avenue East has 830 square feet, and it's just 55 inches wide at its narrowest point. The house is shaped like a right triangle with its sharpest point slightly blunted -- that's the 55-inch-wide edge, where a mudroom and exit door lead into the yard. The longest side of the triangle (the hypotenuse) faces the street, with the entrance placed roughly at its center.
Lisa Horton, the current homeowner, told KPLU that the shape of the house was never much of an impediment, except when she was cooking: The kitchen is toward the narrow end of the house, so you can't stand in front of the oven when you open it; you have to stand to the side.