From his office above a Whole Foods store in upscale Green Hills, John Brittle Jr. and his team of agents target the next affordable Nashville neighborhood for redevelopment.
Brittle, a broker with Parks Realty,is called the “Infill King.” His developer clients rely on him to spot bargain older homes, which they tear down and replace with bigger, more expensive properties.
“For 30 years, real estate agents have been talking about the TSU and Fisk areas,” Brittle said, referring to the neighborhoods surrounding Tennessee State University and Fisk University, two of Nashville's historically black institutions. “We’re going to see some beautiful stuff there.”
Investors and builders have transformed entire neighborhoods in recent years as Nashville’s appetite for homes soared. Countywide, nearly half of all properties with single structures demolished and new construction approved had two or more residential buildings planned for the lot, according to a Tennessean analysis of Metro Nashville permit data.
The familiar scene replays throughout the urban core: Multiple modern, three-story homes replace one-story brick houses. Some derelict homes are demolished and property taxes flow into city coffers. Meanwhile, long-time neighbors live with construction dust, noise, blocked sunlight and changing faces — until they too move, often outside the city.
“Some people don’t like what we do,” said Brittle, who wishes city regulations would allow for denser, less expensive development. “But the fact of the matter is that the market demands this. People are wanting to move into these neighborhoods.”
Metro Nashville issued 962 residential demolition permits in 2015 and 1,035 in 2016 — nearly three houses a day. That rate has cooled off by 10 percent in 2017, but the rapid redevelopment has left many residents wondering what is happening to their city.
The Tennessean analyzed building permit data from the past three years to see where most residential demolitions happened, and what was being built in their place.
The 37209 zip code that includes The Nations and Sylvan Park had the most residential demolitions, with 583 between September 2014 and September 2017. At those properties, 376 had approval for new housing. And on those lots, builders obtained 608 new home permits.
Nashville ZIP codes with most residential demolition permits, Sept. 2014 - Sept. 2017
583 permits - 37209 (The Nations/Sylvan Park/Sylvan Heights)
383 - 37206 (East Nashville)
254 - 37208 (Germantown, North Nashville)
251 - 37215 (Green Hills)
Source: Metro Nashville Codes Department data; Tennessean analysis
"You tear down the eyesore and build two nice houses in their place, and raise the property values," said George Lauderback, owner of L & S Construction Services, the company with the most permits to build on lots with recent demolitions.
- Walkable to the proposed site of the new MLS soccer stadium
- 408 Mallory Street in Nashville's hottest neighborhood, Wedgewood Houston (WEHO)
- 750 sq ft house in poor shape; it could be rented or renovated although it is likely a tear down. Selling strictly AS-IS. Investor special...some foundation issues
- 37X105 lot allowing for a whole host of uses including residential & commercial
- Several $500K new homes being built across street - terrific deal for builder/investor
- House does have new flooring and new paint. Does not have central HVAC but has new window AC's
- House has living room, kitchen, 2 small bedrooms & bathroom
- On a quiet street VERY close to Vandy, Belmont, 12South, & Melrose
- Contact Mike at 615-414-3270 for more info or for a showing
Completely renovated single family home (not attached) & walkable to both Melrose & 12South. New everything - electrical, plumbing, HVAC, duct work. High-end finishes all around with original hardwoods refinished, doors and hardware fully restored. WALK TO BOTH MELROSE & 12SOUTH SHOPPING & RESTAURANTS. 4th bedroom would make a great office, bonus room, media room, etc. A MUST SEE - $764,000.
Contact listing agent, Mark Dunham, for more info. 615.428.1889 or firstname.lastname@example.org