Talbiyeh Real Estate - Looking for an Apartment in Talbieh

Copyright 2006 by Morris Rosenthal - - contact info

The Serial Tourist's Guide to Living in Jerusalem

Questions? Comments?

The photo to the left is one of best know homes in Jerusalem, if you can call this mansion a home. It's currently a consulate, but I recall reading somewhere it was built by the architect who designed many of the landmark homes in the area for himself. I guess the work paid well. Talbiyeh (or Talbieh) is the neighborhood between Rehavia and the German Colony, and has become popular with Americans who can afford it. It's also popular with wealthy Israeli families, French, and other millionaires:-) The classiest streets in Talbieh are found on the East side, towards Karen Kayemet and the Old City. I'm using "nice" in the sense of single family, Arab style homes, often housing a single family or the offices of some well endowed charity. There's also a lot of ongoing construction on the fringes of Talbieh, driven by the demand for luxury housing which can justify tear-downs of older houses and better utilization of "useless" garden space. Talbieh is one of the older neighborhoods of West Jerusalem, and the surviving older houses resemble those of Old Katamon, in terms of both architecture and gardens.Talbieh is the pricier of the two neighborhoods.
Talbieh includes the President's official residence (though some would place it in Rechavia), the Islamic Art Museum and the Jerusalem Theatre. I chose this picture of the Jerusalem Theatre taken at night during an event to point out the main drawback of living next to a major cultural center. The parking situation is a bit of a joke, people park on traffic islands, sidewalks, anywhere they can fit the car. Yet the sidewalk I'm standing on to take the picture is in front of a multi-million dollar home. I like to start with the Jerusalem Post when looking at real estate prices in neighborhoods Americans are looking to buy into.The least expensive Talbieh apartment in the Post with a price listed was $400,000, three rooms on the ground floor, which isn't favored in Israel. The ad promoted it as a "perfect vacation apartment." I hope this doesn't mean Talbieh is on its way to becoming another stretch of ghost town in Jerusalem. The next Talbieh listing I saw was on Jabotinsky, five and a half rooms for only $820,000. It's an odd thing I'm noticing just now that the English listings tend to be less descriptive in more words than the Hebrew listings.
An East Talbieh listing, on Lincoln Street, which is getting pretty close to the King David area, was going for $1,600,000 dollars for 170 meters plus parking. I had a chance to rent an apartment on Lincoln street for a little less than $1,000 a month this winter, so I wouldn't count on it for an investment property. A more reasonable listing on a quiet side street was going fro $565,000, though 90 meters in not a huge apartment for an American family. About nine out of ten of the Talbieh Real Estate listings in the Post this week didn't include a price, which usually indicates that the potential buyers better not be that price sensitive.In Kol HaIr, the Talbieh and Rehavia listings are combined, which is why I originally had them combined on this site. Some of the Hebrew listings include descriptors like, "Classic Rechavia" or "Rechavia on Talbiyeh Border." I suppose the tax collector could tell you which side of the side you're on, I've never asked. As usual, the prices in the Hebrew paper were lower than those in the English press, which if nothing else, should motivate you to study your Hebrew.
The first Talbieh listing I saw in Kol HaIr was a three and a half room, 100 meter apartment for $455,000. The next four bedroom I saw with a price, on Palmach, was $418,000 at 100 meters with porch. A ground floor three room apartment was selling for $285,000, including machsan, and another three room on Jabotinsky was going for $360,000. In general, there are more small apartments available in Rechavia than in Talbieh, and the prices in Talbieh are higher. The apartment complex to the right is one of several new buildings right in the area of the old AACI offices in Jerusalem. This particular building site used to be a tennis court if I recall, I think there was some sort of school going on there, because there was also a sort of small petting zoo which is now gone also. There are some stretches of level ground in Talbieh, but for the main part, like as with most of Jerusalem, you're either walking uphill or downhill. The main roads that go through the area aren't too much of a nuisance, primarily because a series of one-way the wrong way streets keeps them from being a shortcut to the German Colony.
One of the downsides of living in a good neighborhood is that there aren't many options for shopping or eating out because the rents are too high for businesses. Talbieh is about as bereft of commercial establishments as ny neighborhood I've seen in jerusalem, and those they do have are mainly in the beauty salon and real estate office line, maybe a few dry cleaners as well. The high prices and high demand mean that construction is ongoing where the contractors can find tear-downs they can make a profit on or houses that can be added onto. Getting rid of most of the garden or a parking area is one trick, another is going precariously high, and using modern steel reinforced concrete to create a new framework within old stone walls. Still, some of the most beautiful homes in Jerusalem are found in Talbieh, and if your priority in buying real estate is to make sure your neighbors are in the same economic class as you or better, it's a pretty good bet they will be. Plus, for all of my ranting about ghost towns and vacation apartments, if you live next door to a place that's vacant eleven months a year and they give you the key "just in case" you can always open a B&B, at your own risk:-)

Hebrew Kindle eBooks

Foner Books Home | Serial Tourist's Guide to Jerusalem | Contact