Home News Home Buyers Can’t Quit the Ever-Popular Craftsman-Style Bungalow

Home Buyers Can’t Quit the Ever-Popular Craftsman-Style Bungalow

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After buying a craftsman in the Palisade district of Washington, DC, Lauren Herrington and Eric Carter wanted to shine the intentional simplicity of the home.

A couple with three school-aged children focused on undoing the Victorian refurbishment of the previous owner, including a dormer added to the roof. “We started stripping parts,” says 47-year-old Herrington, a 4,500-square-foot home in 1929 that cost $ 1.7 million in 2020. They spent about $ 1 million on bungalow refurbishment.

There is a need for craftsman-style homes known for their high quality woodwork, cozy front porch and multi-room layout, and homebuyers are looking for properties in desirable areas across the country.

“These craftsmen appeal to everyday life,” says Seattle interior designer Paula McHugh, who founded Belltown Design and has worked in more than 15 such homes over the past eight years.

Many clients want to keep the original wooden accents and prominent pouch, but reconstruct some of the internal space or add a bathroom.

Craftsman-style homes draw a premium. According to Realtor.com data, the median listing price for the 12 months from May 2021 was $ 519,000, while the list price for all homes was $ 350,000. Last year, the list of 72,000 detached homes included a reference to craftsmanship. The list of these 100-year-old homes is most likely to appear in the surrounding areas of Atlanta, Seattle, Los Angeles, Portland, and New York.

Emerson of El Studio said that the refurbishments made to Herrington Carter’s house in the 80’s and 90’s had to be removed to create more artisan-style proportions.


EL Studio (before); Anise Hawklander (after)

According to architectural historian Catherine Zip, the houses built between the 1900s and 1920s had a calm atmosphere at the time, with low-pitched gable roofs and porch supported by pillars. The artisan’s house used natural products such as wood, stone and brick, and focused on multiple small rooms intended to be more versatile than the formal spaces of previous Victorian houses.

Inspired by the Arts and Crafts movement that began in the UK, the practical style was also one of the most popular kit homes purchased by mail order, shipped and assembled in the field. By the 1940s, thousands were standing in middle-class neighborhoods across the country. “It was really IKEA in their time,” says Zipf, based in Bristol, Rhode Island.

For some homeowners, the refurbishment has been going on for decades.

After growing up in 1969 with a craftsman whose parents bought for $ 17,000 at Beacon Hill in Seattle, Lisa Nakamura wasn’t ready to let go of it. In 1999, after graduating from college, she returned to her home and bought from her parents for $ 150,000... As a new owner, 54-year-old Nakamura added the long-awaited bathroom to the main living floor, replaced the original 1914 kitchen, and modernized the basement in 2000. Her product executive was ready to put her own mark on it.

Jack Bernier in the Seattle artisan’s lobby.


The Wall Street Journal’s Ben Lind Bloom

She worked with Seattle designer McHugh to find a way to emphasize the original darkwood trim that looks more modern against bright walls. They also created an additional seating area in front of the reconstructed original fireplace. Lighting and furniture have been totally replaced. The total cost was $ 250,000.

“I wanted to make the house so that people would say,’Wow, I took it home and promoted it,'” said Nakamura, who lives with her husband, Jack Shaloum (67), and two teenage sons.

Kate Hayes spent years decorating a 1910 Four Square style home with details of a craftsman who bought for $ 700,000 in 2017 in the Lake Claire district of Atlanta, spending about $ 100,000 over the years. Interior designers have updated “one room at a time” with a contemporary touch, such as bold wall colors and updating bathroom tiles without removing the classic bathtub.

She left most of the room to maintain a direct view of the garden from the front door of the house. “I love the bones of an old house, but with that modernity I can sing a little more,” says 3 bedrooms and 2½ living with two young children and her husband Jack Elver. Mr. Hayes of the bathroom house says.

Mr. Hayes maintained the original dark wood panels and floors of the house. And she tweaked previous owner’s kitchen mods from the 1990s, including classic black and white checkered floors, by adding black cloud wallpaper to the ceiling. She also maintained the original lead windows of the house to brighten the house.

“We have amazing light, so we were able to do something dramatic and be wild,” says Hayes, who completed the refurbishment in 2021.

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Have you ever owned a craftsman-style house? What do you like best about this style? Join the conversation below.

When embarking on a craftsman’s remodeling, having worked on about 20 such homes in the last decade, often the biggest question is whether to preserve the original interior woodwork and the clutter of the small room. Interior designer Lane McNab, Berkeley, Calif., Says. In most cases, she keeps as much of the house intact as possible, rather than breaking walls and fireplaces and eliciting accents in wooden interiors. “People want to save it, and we do,” she says. On the other hand, she adds, many homeowners tend to update their baths and kitchens.

Many artisan homes do not have a historic position, so today’s homeowners are also forced to consider refurbishments decades ago, Washington, who worked with Herrington. Elizabeth Emerson, Principal of DC’s El Studio, says.

During the refurbishment, she tried to maintain the craftsman’s scale from the outside, but updated the look with a gray kitchen and wide plank oak floors to expand the entertainment area. Since the house is likely to be a kithouse shipped and built on site, Emerson needed to strengthen the internal frame structure to support more weight when opening the room.

Outside, she added a former craftsman’s front pouch surrounded by the previous owner to create an open platform for socializing. “It’s a great place for them to hang out,” she says.

Claire Hedgecox, 36, has completed a remake of her 1923 Houston home, which she bought in 2010 in 2020. Instead of expanding a 1,800-square-foot home in the Houston Heights district, she updated her one-story bungalow with the addition of a bathroom. Third bedroom in a large kitchen. Hedgcoxe then worked with his neighbor, designer Hallie Henley Sims, to update the decoration.

Designers have improved room flow by incorporating oversized floral wallpapers, crystals and brass fixtures and adding a dining area close to the backyard.

Marketing expert Hedgcoxe bought the house for $ 232,500 and spent $ 400,000 on decorating and refurbishing it. She wanted to renew her home without robbing the classic elements of a comfortable bungalow style. “I’m sure it doesn’t break down,” she says.

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