End times are near for the Jehovah's Witnesses… as the largest landlords in Brooklyn Heights, that is. The charming, historic townhouse at 105 Willow Street—one of the religious group's many charming, historic neighborhood properties—has sold for $3.3 million, city records show.
We'd say God must be smiling down upon the Watchtower properties, with this sale coming on the heels of a vacant, seven-story apartment building at 183 Columbia Heights that went for $6.6 million earlier this week. Other properties—like an adorable carriage house at 165 Columbia Heights—have also vanished from the market rather quickly.
But then, well-preserved buildings in a beautiful, historic neighborhood don't really need God's help to sell. Especially when the price is right. (The townhouse tried and failed to get a lofty $4.69 million with Halstead in 2008).
The five-story townhouse, listed with Corcoran brokers Ellen Newman and Lisa Detwiler, is currently divided into five one-bedroom apartments and is decorated in an appropriately modest fashion, from what we can see on the listing photos.
The secretive buyers, 105 Willow Street LLC, paid a little under the $3.6 million ask.
And while the interiors might be somewhat frowsy (we're looking at you, grayish carpeting) the exterior has won beauty contests. Really! The Watchtower was awarded a certificate of merit from the Landmarks Preservation Commission for the house's superior exterior restoration.
"They're always in such great shape, well-maintained, all the plumbing and wiring in perfect condition," said Ms. Newman.
Ms. Newman said that the 4,755-square foot home had been purchased to be used as a family residence, with the possibility of keeping a garden apartment as a rental.
The Jehovah's Witnesses, whose world headquarters have been located in Brooklyn Heights for over a century, are selling off their property portfolio in anticipation of a move upstate to the town of Warwick. Their 34 property holdings are thought to be worth between $600 million and $1 billion.