Washington History - House Reports

So I haven’t made it over to the Recorder of Deeds or the Office of the Surveyor yet, but I did contact Kelsey & Associates, Inc. for a free estimate. The company produces a historical report of your house which includes information about the construction, the architect, the block and the neighborhood. I submitted their online form and provided them with the information I currently have (the names of the last three owners). The house was just renovated and flipped to me, but the owner before that bought the place in 1975 and owned it until it was foreclosed on in February of 2009. I also know the name of the owner that sold the house in 1975, but not when they purchased the home.

After looking at the free sample histories on their site I was interested to find out how much it all cost. The samples looked really great and thorough.

Sample House Histories
712 East Capitol Street, N.E., Washington, DC (2 mb)
2436 Eutaw Place, Reservoir Hill, Baltimore City (6 mb)

I just received a response from Kelsey & Associates, Inc.:

“I know your block well, and believe there is much to uncover. We complete the extensive research phase using deeds, census, city directories permits, and other sources to compose the written history, fully cited. One of our latest abilities is to attempt to locate living relatives of the early owners - ones that usually have family photographs and stories about the house that rarely if ever make it into the public archives. It's quite amazing what level of detail is now available through various subscription services such as the Washington Post, etc.

We would be happy to research and write your house history for $600. It takes about 5-6 weeks for completion”.

I would love to get such a detailed history about my house and block, but I’m not sure I want to pay $600 right now. Maybe I can see how hard it is to do some of my own research first.

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