Welcome to our house! Spencer and I had been looking for land to build a modern house for a few years. We were never able to find land in our price point, that wasn’t near water (aka a flood zone). We were under contract three times, but all ended up with some sort of issue that prevented us from going through with the purchase. The entire time I was on the hunt for land, using Zillow, I was also filtering for single family houses. This was for two reasons: the first was to possibly find a tear-down and build, another was to see the prices of possible comps in the areas we were looking. At the end of it all, we ended up buying a house and renovating.
The house we ended up buying (and renovating) was something that jumped out for many reasons: the size, the price, & the style.
To be fair, I was looking at price first and the size was just something that I wasn’t used to seeing when looking in our price range (that’s what got my attention). The location was majorly up in the air: we were looking at land/houses anywhere north of Ponce de Leon and not too far out side the perimeter. (Roswell was too far, Sandy Springs – too crowded/traffic on Roswell Road, Decatur – too difficult to drive in/out, West Midtown – trendy, but not there yet, Lots of other areas – out of our price range) As for the particular area of this house, we had looked at (and went under contract) for land near this location… so we had an idea of the amenities. As for the style, we wanted modern & high ceilings… and this was pretty much the only way to get something like that – in an existing house. It’s 70’s/80’s modern – I never thought I’d buy one of these houses – and, actually, I remember thinking as a kid how ugly they were. The reason we bought this house was probably why they were built in the first place – the modern aesthetic: high, sloped ceilings and large store-front windows. (Bonus was the larger lots/farther house spacing as well.)
Now, on to the tour: The first level consists of the garage and basement (which includes two rooms, a full bath, & laundry.) Exterior stairs lead up to the main floor (the foyer, kitchen, dining room, living room, half bath, master bed, master bath, and porch.) The third level: two bedrooms and a full guest bathroom.
4 bedrooms, 3 1/2 bath
2700 sq. feet (including the basement)
Built in 1980
Cedar sided, Contemporary style
The front of the house:
On the bottom left is a basement window, hidden behind the lattice and directly under the front door is a basement separate entrance, and on the right around the corner are the garage doors. On the main floor (from left to right) is the kitchen (three windows), foyer (giant window area), and master bedroom (which is above the garage). The box on the front of the house is the master closet. On the third level (above the kitchen) is the smaller of the two guest bedrooms is visible.
(view from the front door):
The Kitchen is on the left, the stairs lead up to the guest bedrooms – with living room in the back. The master bedroom door is off of the foyer on the right. (the location where most houses have a half bathroom.)
The kitchen circa 1980 (view from the foyer door):
The pantry and basement door (not visible in this image) are to the right, the dining room is toward the back through the open doorway.
The dining room:
with a view onto the screened back porch (access from the living room). I suspect that the windows may not be original due to the trim being a completely different style from anything else in the house. (Sorry for the grain in the image, its pretty dark in this room despite the giant windows and awesome ISO.)
Moving into the living room:
(view from the dining room), with the foyer on the right. The half bathroom access is from the living room (which I think is kind of awkward.) The oak floor was installed by the previous owner.
I think the skylight may be original because other houses in the neighborhood have them. Though, I do wonder why this is the only skylight in the house. (The living room is pretty dark for a house with so many windows.)
The second floor:
Two bedrooms and a full bath.
At the top of the stairs looking back toward the living room and foyer, behind the camera is the guest bathroom with the two bedrooms to the right and left – the wood boring bees love that clerestory window by the way.
The basement floor plan.:
On the left, two rooms (one counts as a bedroom), full bath, laundry, & closets. The stairs actually turn to the left above the closet. The basement bathroom has been updated and the entire basement is “finished” – finished drywall, loop carpet (no pad), & drop ceiling tiles. On the right side of the floor plan is the two-door Garage (the boxed area represents utilities).
Here are some iPhone photos of the yard. The previous owners cultivated a very nice & healthy fescue lawn. Unfortunately, we have a pretty steep driveway, which is not fun in the rain… but I’m happy to live at the top of a hill rather than at the bottom in a soggy flood zone.
The “back yard” is moss instead of grass (which I am so excited about!) There is a larger wooded area to the left side of the house.
Overall, the house sports pretty standard ’80’s finishings. Wood trim and hollow-core doors, composite cabinets and linoleum floors in the kitchen, and carpet in the bedrooms. Oh, and lets not forget the stippled ceiling and stone fireplace.