Property Crush

These Are the 7 Most Unique Home Listings We Saw in 2021

published Dec 22, 2021
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Credit: Dean Tyler Photography
A private island with a cottage was listed for $399k this year off the coast of Maine.

Writing Apartment Therapy’s Property Crush column is one of my favorite things to do — and not just because it allows me to surf real estate listings while I sip my coffee in the mornings. Highlighting one-of-a-kind homes and their respective one-of-a-kind features is the name of the game, and it’s especially exciting when I’m able to point to places you can actually purchase and live in if you want to! While there were dozens of standout properties covered this year, some earned top-tier status in my eyes. Ahead, find the seven most unique home listings of 2021.

Credit: Cape Cod Oceanview Realty, Inc.

A Tiny Cape Cod Cottage with So Much Rustic Charm

Positioned on the tip of Cape Cod along the Provincetown’s main thoroughfare, this little nautical abode is tucked out of sight along a brick walkway. Clad in the Cape’s classic weathered shingles, the home offers a shared deck and views of the harbor. Inside, wood paneling takes what would be an otherwise regular room and transforms it into the coziest little hideaway. Though it has a small footprint, the main living space makes space for lounging, dining, and meal prepping in the tiny kitchen, which is a marvel of its own. Above it all, beamed ceilings add a sense of spaciousness.

Credit: BrightMLS/Guerilla Realty

An Art Deco Jewel in Baltimore

This two-bedroom gem is truly one of a kind. How can I be so sure? The granddaughter of the man who designed the home, Benjamin Eisenberg, confirms it’s the only house of its kind in Baltimore. Built in 1947 for Eisenberg’s second wife, Eunice, the home explodes with retro charm. Eisenberg’s granddaughter Beverly explains that the couple often took trips down to Miami Beach in his convertible, which is probably where he gleaned inspiration for his pastel-colored creation. He designed the house to maximize the views of nearby Lake Montebello, with windows, curving walls, and glass blocks.

Credit: Courtesy of Summit Sotheby's International Realty

A Time Capsule House with a Groovy Conversation Pit

Nothing gets people talking like a good conversation pit, am I right? The shag-carpeted hangout in this house for sale in Salt Lake City is a real beaut, though the rest of the four-bedroom, three-bathroom home sparkles and shines, too. Downstairs, however, is where this circa 1968 construction lets its hair down. It’s home to the show-stopping conversation pit, along with a stone fireplace, magenta carpeting, classic wood paneling, a wet bar, and sliding doors that lead to what you might call a hot tub room.

Credit: Golden Gate Sotheby's International Realty

A Whimsical Hideaway with an ADU

While standing at the front gate of this impressive home for sale in Berkeley, California, you can turn around to see the Golden Gate Bridge over San Francisco Bay. Start walking toward the house, though, and you’ll feel like you’ve entered a secret garden: a path flanked by lush plants leads to the entrance of the whimsical shingled home. The property offers an ADU, or additional dwelling unit — an extremely popular home addition during COVID. This guest house (or in-law apartment, if you’d like) has one bedroom, one full bathroom, an open-concept kitchen and living area, skylight windows, and a patio.

Credit: Dean Tyler Photography

An Entire Island for Sale in Maine

This private island for sale up north is my daydream realized. Called Ducks Ledges Island, this stunning hunk of land is up there. Way up there. Sandwiched between the shores of Acadia National Park and the Canadian border lies the 1.5-acre plot. The land formation has no trees, meaning it offers uninterrupted ocean views in all directions. Then there’s the cute little cottage plopped in the middle of it all: a 540-square-foot one-bedroom. An abundance of windows maximize the views on the inside, and space for a hammock on the front porch means the livin’ is easy outside, too. 

Credit: Clinton Meyer

A Quintessential Palm Springs Home with a Pink Front Door

Situated a short drive from Palm Springs’ downtown, this circa 1963 creation flaunts all the mid-century modern hallmarks: clean lines, breezeblocks, walls of glass, and clerestory windows. Designed by architect William Krisel, it was most recently home to designer Carlos Cardoza, who’s responsible for the place’s splashy, updated interiors. Inside, bright, airy living spaces are punctuated by colorful furnishings and accents. The house has been a stop during Modernism Week, a festival of house tours and architectural splendor. And though it’s not the house with #thatpinkdoor, it does indeed have a pink door.

Credit: John Maciel

A Huge Houseboat in Massachusetts

Houseboats have a reputation for being tiny, somewhat cramped, and downright adorable. But this one for sale in the seaside town of Fairhaven, Mass., isn’t small at all — it’s huge (and still adorable). The floating home is as big as any house on land, with the added benefits of harbor views and a deck for lounging. The three-bedroom, two-bathroom home measures 1,820 square feet. It’s anchored by a spacious living room with a wood stove, exposed ceiling beams, and sliding glass doors that lead to the deck. And for sailors on the move, the home comes with a barge so it can be transported to another marina.