Frank Lloyd Wright House Available at Bargain $1.38M

frank lloyd wright houseA choice Frank Lloyd Wright prairie-style home has been sitting on the market for a year, with its price cut in small increments down to the current $1.38 million asking price. Could this be a bargain for a Wright house?

The house in question is the William E. Martin house in Oak Park, Ill., the western suburb of Chicago where Wright lived and designed 25 buildings, and Realtor Laura Talaske of Gloor Realty thinks it's a steal. Then again, she owns it. "With the way the market is, we're trying to be realistic," she says.

According to the Frank Lloyd Wright Building Conservancy, 20 other Wright-designed homes are on the market right now around the country. Talaske sees hers as one of the more attainable ones, since it hasn't gone through a major renovation, bumping up the price. Yet the Wright design -- and cache -- is worth a premium.

"Living in a Wright house is like living in a work of art," she says. "So that does affect the price. It's not just bricks and mortar, it really is more than that."

As Curbed Chicago pointed out, the three-story home is unusual for its height. It's taller than most Search Homes for Sale See photos of homes for sale in your area and across the country on AOL Real Estate of Wright's prairie-style homes. But the 1903 home has some of Frank Lloyd Wright's signature details like original woodwork, built-ins and art-glass windows -- 59 of them, in fact.

"Our house is basically a wonderful family home that's been beautifully maintained, but it's never been overhauled," says Talaske. "We believe that the original plaster, with cracks, is more historically appropriate. Everything is in really good shape but we did save the original fabric without rebuilding it as other homes have done."

Originally listed at $1.58 million, the home has been restored to its original floorplan. In line with Wright's visionary idea that homes should relate to their surroundings, this one features several porches that reach out to the hug the land. One porch overlooks a koi pond and perennial gardens. The two modern updates to the W.E. Martin house are the renovated kitchen and addition of central air.

Talaske says she's looking to downsize. "This is a big, 5-bedroom, 2-bath home and our kids are off to college. It deserves to have a lot more activity than what we're giving it."

Carrie Culpepper blogs about design at

Click here for home listings in Oak Park, Ill.

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So long, Frank Lloyd Wright.
I can't believe your song is gone so soon.
I barely learned the tune
So soon
So soon.

I'll remember Frank Lloyd Wright.
All of the nights we'd harmonize till dawn.
I never laughed so long
So long
So long.

Architects may come and
Architects may go and
Never change your point of view.
When I run dry
I stop awhile and think of you

So long, Frank Lloyd Wright
All of the nights we'd harmonize till dawn.
I never laughed so long
So long
So long.
'Simon and Garfunkel"

March 09 2011 at 12:13 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

The desire to own a structure by the legendary Wright apparently clouds
judgement. I can not use the word home in the same sentence in
reference to this house. If you want to see an amazing home check out
Copperfield's island retreat.

March 08 2011 at 2:59 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

no deal

March 08 2011 at 12:59 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I am beginning to agree with my husband; what's so great about Frank Lloyd Wright? I'm nearly 70 year old. Of the many homes I have seen, few leave me more unimpressed than Frank Lloyd Wright. A typical 1930's bungalow shows every bit as much imagination in design as his structures (with the possible exception being "Falling Waters".) But a single good design should not a career make.

March 08 2011 at 10:42 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

there's a house he built in the DC area with waterfalls and to tell you the truth I am not impressed with his houses at all

March 08 2011 at 10:21 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

It's only worth what you can sell it for, regardless of the design.

March 07 2011 at 11:18 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Franf LLoyd had a much higher opinion of himself than I. His homes are spartan and cold.

March 07 2011 at 7:37 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Mike's comment

I totally agree. He was a legend in his own mind. I grew up in an area that had 3 of his homes very close to each other and cannot say I was ever impressed with the houses at all. Cold and spartan is so correct.

March 07 2011 at 8:48 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

really nice place - too bad it's decorated like a frat house

March 07 2011 at 7:29 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Who is Frank Lloyd Wright?

March 07 2011 at 6:12 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Bob's comment

Are you serious? I bet you can't name one architect.

March 08 2011 at 1:07 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

The home is lovely, but the houses across the street aren't million dollar homes. So if you pay 1.3 million for this house, you become the most expensive house on the block (regardless that it's a FL Wright home). It will take a Frank Lloyd Wright fan to write the check. With so many fantastic homes in foreclosure (super cheap pricing for mansions),
it will take a while for this property to sell at that price. I'm sure the property was an investment, which is why the owner wants to sell.

March 07 2011 at 4:58 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply