Spite Houses of Alameda

“Spite houses are rare these days due to strict modern building codes, but many that have grandfathered in—like the Alameda house—are still standing, not as annoying these days as they are novel, and many now look upon the spite houses with a smile.” (source: Atlas Oscura)

A spite house is a building constructed or substantially modified to irritate neighbors or any party with land stakes. Spite houses may create obstructions, such as blocking out light or blocking access to neighboring buildings, or can be flagrant symbols of defiance. (source: Wikipedia)

There are many spite houses in America, each with an interesting history. Read “15 obnoxious houses that were built just to annoy the neighbors” on to learn more about some of the most well-known spite houses across the country, some dating back to the 1700s.Alameda has a few spite houses, but one is quite famous.

The story goes that in the late 1900s, Charles Froling built a spite house because the city took a portion of his land to build a street. Using the small amount of land left to him by Alameda, he constructed a home that was 20-feet high, 54-feet long, and a mere 10-feet wide. It was designed to irk not only the city, but a neighbor who had supported the construction project. In 2018, the house’s resident said that she believed that the spite house had been built because of sibling rivalry.

The home, located at Broadway and Crist Street, is currently occupied but at one time fell into disarray.

“It was so derelict the city considered condemning the structure, but a public campaign rallied support and saved the house from destruction.” (source: SF Gate)

Despite the narrowness, the Alameda spite house offers more than 1,100 square feet of living space.

For further reading about the Alameda spite house, check out these articles:

Atlas Obscura

Weird CA

SF Gate

Image: Yelp


Connect with Alameda's #1 real estate team.

With over $1 billion dollars in real estate sold, Kate McCaffrey Group

is ranked No. 1 in Alameda and No. 2 in the Inner East Bay.




Sign up to receive exclusive access and info on “off market” and “coming soon” homes before they are available to the public!

DRE# 01355206 | COMPASS CA DRE# 01527235 | PRIVACY POLICY​ | Accessibility Statement​ | TERMS OF SERVICE ©2022 KATE MCCAFFREY.

*#1 Agent in Alameda Since 2014 / #2 Team in the Inner East Bay Source: Bay East/Paragon MLS 2023

Bay East ©2022. CCAR ©2022. bridgeMLS ©2022. Information Deemed Reliable But Not Guaranteed. This information is being provided by the Bay East MLS, or CCAR MLS, or bridgeMLS. The listings presented here may or may not be listed by the Broker/Agent operating this website. This information is intended for the personal use of consumers and may not be used for any purpose other than to identify prospective properties consumers may be interested in purchasing. Data last updated at ​ August 1, 2022. Compass is a real estate broker licensed by the State of California and abides by Equal Housing Opportunity laws. License Number 01527235. All material presented herein is intended for informational purposes only and is compiled from sources deemed reliable but has not been verified. Changes in price, condition, sale or withdrawal may be made without notice. No statement is made as to the accuracy of any description. All measurements and square footage are approximate. If your property is currently listed for sale this is not a solicitation.