Wednesday, December 7, 2022

First Peeks of the Renovation Plan

When we were looking for a new home, we had a set of criteria.
  And while this home met many of them, there were some things that have evolved as we’ve gotten to know the house a bit better.  So here is our latest list.
  •       ~2500 square feet
  • Maintain 'old house' style and charm
  • Open-ish floor plan for entertaining 
  •  Bunkroom for the grandkids
  • Future bedroom on the first floor to age in place
  • Mudroom for all the coats/boots/hats/etc
  • 2nd floor laundry

So let’s go through a few of the key goals, starting with the size of the home.  We don’t want another giant house.  Something around 2,500 square feet will be perfect and since this house is 2,480, it seems like just the right fit. 

A key to this design - a lot of things stay the same.  There isn't any change to the footprint of the house.  And we aren't making many changes to the layout of the house.  All of the rooms stay in their current configuration.  Where we are making changes, it's to correct structural issues that we've found and add a bit of space upstairs for a bunk room and bathroom.

Here's a first look at the exterior.  We're working hard to maintain the 'old house' look on the front facade, but will try and align the windows a bit more.  (Before everyone comments - yes, it would be nice to have another window next to the front porch for symmetry, but that would put it right in the stairwell.  That is a big no-no for building code - and I don't want a fake window that was built behind a wall), To help balance the front elevation, I'm thinking it's a great place to put a trellis with some sort of a climbing vine. I found a nice trellis behind the garage, it was too rotted to reuse, but I saved the brackets from it to create copies for a new one.

On the garage side, we've kept my favorite exterior view with the little vestibule that steps up to the taller kitchen roof.  Seriously, I love this view of the house!  

But if you step back from the door and look at the new design, you also get a first peek of the new shed dormer on the back.  

We will tear off the structurally compromised hip dormer that's currently on the back of the house and replace it with a shed dormer - which is a better match to the front facade.  The hip dormer just looked odd and didn't match anything else on the house.

Best of all, the new dormer will extend to the back of the foundation so all of the building load will be transferred to the foundation - instead of the middle of the dining room!  A win-win from a structural engineering perspective!

Bunkroom at last home
The new shed dormer will give us some additional living area across the back of the 2nd floor.  This will give us bedroom space for when the family comes to visit.  The bunkroom for the grandkids was a huge plus in our previous home (and we only had 3 grandchildren then – with the twins we have 5)  That's a lot of bunks!  And it works well for grownups in a pinch!

It also give us space for two bathrooms on the 2nd floor - a must have for us!

The right side of the house will have lots of windows like we have today, but they will all match, instead of a mixture of styles that we have today.  We will also add a sliding glass door to give us access to the deck that we're planning to build there.
We're pretty pleased with this approach.  It maintains the original character of the house, while providing a bit more bedroom/bath space on the 2nd floor.  And best of all, it fixes a lot of the challenging structural issues that we found when we started opening up a few areas of the house.  

Stay tuned, We're still making a couple of tweaks to the floorplan, but I'll share that soon! 



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  1. Good idea to plan ahead for aging in place. But where will laundry be if you move the bedroom to the first floor?

  2. Looks beautiful, as I knew it would. Can’t wait to see the awesome completed home!

  3. Cannot wait to see it completed. I know it will be lovely .


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