House hunting

What are the things that puzzle, enrage, delight and tickle you as you go about your life in Madison?
narcoleptish
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Re: House hunting

Postby narcoleptish » Thu Feb 22, 2018 1:33 pm

I love this property. The house does nothing for me but that's a good price for what you get. 8+ acres of privacy just outside Verona. Two huge outbuildings and that smaller one that could be a cool little studio. A separate apartment. That old-school pool sitting off by itself like the Clampett's seement pond!

Really it's mostly that big newer shop building. That's fucking sweet. I'd just sit out there in that recliner, staring at my motorcycle and pretending I needed all that space.

https://www.starkhomes.com/property/204 ... a-wi-53593

jman111
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Re: House hunting

Postby jman111 » Thu Feb 22, 2018 1:41 pm

Damn. When you're right, you're right. Nice find.

snoqueen
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Re: House hunting

Postby snoqueen » Thu Feb 22, 2018 3:57 pm

It's on the way to Paoli, a totally pretty part of Dane Co. On the face of it, I'm surprised the price is that low given the location and acreage. There are probably many things we do not know here.

The middle part of that house is old as dirt, and over the years they just kept adding on in every direction. I'll just live in that nice big garage with the kitchen and a bath, thank you, and somebody else can take the house.

I wonder what the previous owner did with all those buildings. The layout looks purposeful, and the realty company went to a lot of trouble to erase the purpose. That's OK, it's their job.

Ducatista
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Re: House hunting

Postby Ducatista » Fri Feb 23, 2018 2:59 pm

narcoleptish wrote:And how about that single B&W shot of the front of the house (#51) from before the remodel? To me it speaks to the sadness undoubtedly felt by the other house in being part of a waterfront property, yet having no view of the lake itself. To a life spent shouldering the burden of being the public face of the property but missing out on all the fun. A sad sentinel guarding the gate to a lakeside eden. Its residents staring wistfully out the window at the backs of the chosen few as they happily trot on down to their private pier.

Beautiful.

(the back 2nd-floor balcony does have a pretty sweet lake view, but that in no way diminishes the awesomeness of your analysis)

narcoleptish
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Re: House hunting

Postby narcoleptish » Tue Feb 27, 2018 9:02 am

One of the most well-preserved MCMs I've seen in Madison.

https://www.starkhomes.com/property/205 ... n-wi-53711

This isn't the work of some well-heeled hipsters buying up mint condition furniture and fixtures. This is the work of someone's impeccably clean & orderly grandma and it should be preserved as a goddamn museum to the time period if you ask me!

That light over the dining table is sweet. The cord retracts inside that orb for raising/lowering. Pink kitchen! That patio furniture!!

I think we have the same blue double sinks in our bathroom. Love em.

The thought that someone is probably going to go in there and rip out all that pristine old stuff just kills me. I want those kitchen cabinets.

snoqueen
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Re: House hunting

Postby snoqueen » Tue Feb 27, 2018 10:20 am

Damn, those are my mother's green living room chairs. And she had a retracting-cord hanging lamp like that in her dining room. And those kitchen cabinets are terrific, though somebody made a weird aftermarket enclosure around the gigantifridge. You might be able to fix that.

A nice old house indeed.

It seems almost ill-tempered to gripe about the windows -- at least they've been replaced, which for energy reasons was surely wise. But those diamond-shaped (fake) mullions in the smaller windows (bedrooms, for instance) are horribly incongruous, and the bow-shaped large window in the living room is not the right window for a ranch. It should be flat, and the original could have been either a regular picture window or an array of littler square panes. (Maybe there's an old photo somewhere to go on, for originalists.) However, putting all the windows right would be so expensive nobody's going to do it, so we're stuck with 'em.

Toilets don't live forever either, and apparently they couldn't find another blue one to match the other fixtures in that beautiful main bath so they used white. What can ya do, once again.

Still, I bet there's oak under that carpeting, the fireplace is perfectly right, and just about anybody would be fine with the sliding glass door someone added so you could step right out onto the back porch. I'm pretty sure 1959 door technology didn't include those.

I wonder if they'll let me have that cool aluminum porch furniture.

Is it something about the photo, or do you think the kitchen sink and built in oven are really pink? That's icing on the cake if they are.

Thanks, grandma. You took good care of the house.

jman111
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Re: House hunting

Postby jman111 » Tue Feb 27, 2018 10:41 am

snoqueen wrote:I wonder if they'll let me have that cool aluminum porch furniture.

I'm sure the chairs are nice and all, but that glider looks awesome.

narcoleptish
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Re: House hunting

Postby narcoleptish » Wed Feb 28, 2018 9:03 am

snoqueen wrote:It seems almost ill-tempered to gripe about the windows


Yup, those are terrible. If you want a Tudor, buy a Tudor.

snoqueen wrote:Toilets don't live forever either, and apparently they couldn't find another blue one to match the other fixtures in that beautiful main bath so they used white.


Actually the body of the toilet does. It's the tank parts that wear out and can be replaced. I have that blue toilet and what does happen is the porcelain gets etched in the bowl and never looks clean. So now it's the basement toilet because I couldn't bear to part with it. (did I just admit that?)

snoqueen wrote:somebody made a weird aftermarket enclosure around the gigantifridge


I even like that. They knew you should leave space around it for air circulation to cool the condenser. That painted metal grill works for me. It could have been much worse.

MY SO thinks the house was staged but I'm saying no. There's enough of a mix of not-so-cool items that a pro wouldn't include and then there's no mention of the Mid-Century coolness factor in the description. If they went to the trouble of staging the Realtor would be playing that up.

Maybe there's an estate sale in the future?

Ducatista
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Re: House hunting

Postby Ducatista » Wed Feb 28, 2018 4:31 pm

narcoleptish wrote:MY SO thinks the house was staged but I'm saying no. There's enough of a mix of not-so-cool items that a pro wouldn't include and then there's no mention of the Mid-Century coolness factor in the description. If they went to the trouble of staging the Realtor would be playing that up.

You say MCM, I say your basic ham-handed ranch with two nice features.

The Tudor-tacular windows (let's hope those are slapped-on grilles), the multi-paned living room bay, that bullshit scalloping over the sink, the busy 2-sink bathroom, and some seriously graceless proportions outweigh that fireplace wall and the porch.

I guess the right buyer either won't see those as downsides, or will see the value in $350K plus the price to fix.

snoqueen
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Re: House hunting

Postby snoqueen » Wed Feb 28, 2018 6:23 pm

We can all agree these people's taste in curtains is awful, but the scallopy wooden valance thing over the kitchen sink is typical of the kitchen cabinetry of 1959 and if it were missing, I'd be right in there trying to figure out what else they ripped out. If the next buyer dislikes it of course it doesn't need to stay, but it's part of the original kitchen style. Usually these all-wood cabinets were built on site and the carpenter took extra pride in such little flourishes. I'm thinking the cabinets in the first floor laundry room, which is useful but probably not original, might have come from the wall in the kitchen where they built the refrigerator alcove. I can't tell for sure but something looks like it was changed there, probably for good reasons.

And one person's overly busy tiled bathroom is the next person's amazing original.

This one isn't the house for you, and that's fine. But the very features you dislike are what makes it someone else's prize.

I don't think this place was totally staged (as n's SO guesses) but I believe they did some shuffling of the remaining furniture once the relatives removed their favorite pieces. You can see where they took away the pictures that used to hang in the blue bedroom, for instance. Nobody really puts their chair-telephone table thing in the basement rec room as a piece of lounge furniture, but it made a usable filler for an empty spot. The relatives were nice enough to leave the set of four marimba chairs at the basement bar, and if there's an estate sale some picker is gonna grab those in the first fifteen minutes. Same with the pole lamp. The not-exactly-classic dining room set might last a bit longer.

The aluminum porch furniture? And those things on the wall 90 degrees from the upstairs fireplace, the ones that look like brass lizards? Maybe we should add estate sales to the House Hunting topic, given that neat old houses on the market are often concurrent with or immediately following such sales. And sales are a great opportunity to snoop (or I should say inspect).

Side note: ranch houses with low pitched roofs are often hard to insulate adequately in the narrow angle where the outside walls meet the roof, and that's a downside. The energy upside might be great roof solar potential given the fact this house is apparently facing an east-west road and has only a few trees around it. Good solar potential adds to your asking price and is going to be more valuable in the years to come. I can't say if I think the asking price on this place is reasonable or not because so much depends on the mechanicals, which aren't shown. I give a plus one for the hot water baseboard heat.

narcoleptish
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Re: House hunting

Postby narcoleptish » Wed Feb 28, 2018 10:31 pm

Ducatista wrote:You say MCM, I say your basic ham-handed ranch with two nice features.


Point taken. I've mellowed on my enthusiasm a bit. What caught my attention was how intact the original interior features were. The kitchen, baths, fireplace, woodwork, light fixtures. Architecturally it does nothing for me.

...No love for the double blue sinks? Oh C'mon, who doesn't love the idea of prepping side-by-side with your sweetie, each with private access to hot & cold running water! We have them and it never happens, but still...

massimo
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Re: House hunting

Postby massimo » Wed Feb 28, 2018 11:09 pm

snoqueen wrote:You can see where they took away the pictures that used to hang in the blue bedroom, for instance.

And the man that used to hang there too.

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Ducatista
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Re: House hunting

Postby Ducatista » Thu Mar 01, 2018 10:36 am

snoqueen wrote:This one isn't the house for you, and that's fine. But the very features you dislike are what makes it someone else's prize.

Couldn't agree more! I posted to contest the MCM label. Listing a few offending elements, with vigor, was just the icing on the cake.

Ducatista
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Re: House hunting

Postby Ducatista » Thu Mar 01, 2018 10:42 am

narcoleptish wrote:No love for the double blue sinks? Oh C'mon, who doesn't love the idea of prepping side-by-side with your sweetie, each with private access to hot & cold running water! We have them and it never happens, but still...

Ha! I do kinda love those blue sinks, but everything that surrounds them makes the baby Jesus cry.

I've never understood the double sink thing. Do people really perform their ablutions side by side? I love my husband more than I love life itself, but I do not EVER want to share bathroom time with him, even if it's just brushing teeth.

Ducatista
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Re: House hunting

Postby Ducatista » Thu Mar 01, 2018 10:58 am

massimo wrote:And the man that used to hang there too.

True story: in our blood-red bedroom on Spaight Street we had a beautiful old sick call set* hanging above our bed. We don't buy into the god thing, but the set is a lovely family relic and looked great on that wall. Until the day we came home and found it HANGING UPSIDE DOWN above the bed. God or not, that was some creepy shit.

*Catholics will know what I'm talking about. For everybody else: it's a big crucifix hollowed out to hold a stole, holy water, candles, and sacred oils, used for extreme unction in the comfort of your home.


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