Tag Archives: remodel

The Ranch House Revisited


Given the current downsizing and one level living trends the Ranch House finds itself looking a bit more appealing these days. Originally, created for its efficient scale, floorplans and ease of living it may have a brighter future stoked by this gloomy time. In the past decades we have seen homes grow in size to where a master bedroom has become the size of what once would be sufficient for a living room. Do we ever ask ourselves why we need all this size?  Is bigger always better?

You will find that we are fans of the Ranch Home.  I am not sure if it is due to the fact that we grew up in Ranch Homes in the 60’s and 70’s or that today I have learned to downsize and have a simple home that allows more freedom for the rest of my life.  Either way we urge you to take another look at that understated  house you drive by everyday and consider what it might do for you.

Renovating A Ranch Style House

Thinking about how to renovate ranch style houses leads to all kinds of possibilities if you have the foresight to see the potential. Ranch style houses are not always seen as a historic style home worthy of restoration, yet they are integral to mid-century American style. Often these homes are remodeled; stories added, and the unique look of the structure is muddled beyond recognition. While they did have some negative design characteristics, overall the homes illustrated the love of sleek modernism that was the byword of the 1950s and 1960s. The best renovations will honor the style of the original home.

History of the Ranch Style

Ranch style architecture was not born in the tract homes of the late 1950s. It began far earlier than that, in San Diego, California. The first ranch style home was built in 1932 by a California architect named Cliff May. Born in 1909, May was fascinated by the homes that were built by the early Mexican settlers in California. These homes were horizontal in nature and seemed to pull the landscape into the home to create and integrated living area.

Characteristics of a Ranch Style Home

The homes wer meant to be sleek, easy to clean, and leave time for the owners to pursue their interests. Materials were natural. Stone and brick were often brought into the home as design elements. Home interiors were open and included glass doors to patios which allowed the patio to be used as another room.
Other design elements are:

  • – Horizontal lines
  • – Living areas at the front of the house
  • – Smooth surfaces
  • – Paneling
  • – Picture windows
  • – Kitchen peninsulas
  • – Flat or low pitched roofs
  • – Smooth, hollow core doors
  • – Narrow layout
  • – Simple floor plans
  • – Attached garage

Good Bones

Before you begin to renovate, ranch style houses should be inspected carefully by a professional housing inspector.  It is very important that the foundation and the structure of the home be solid.  Other areas that should be brought up to date are:

  • – Plumbing
  • – Wiring
  • – Insulation
  • – Heating/Cooling System
  • – Drainage
  • – Roof

If all of these are in good condition, then you can move on to the renovation of your home.  Before you do, you might want to consider the neighborhood.  Is it one you want to live in or continue to live in?  This is something to decide before you invest a lot of money to renovate a ranch style house.

Steps to Renovate Ranch Style Houses

  • Make a list of the characteristics of your home that you love.  These are things you will want to keep.
  • Make a list of your current needs.  More space?  Bigger Kitchen?
  • Figure out how much you can afford to spend on a renovation.
  • Decide how much you can realistically do yourself.
  • If you will be making major changes in structure then talk to an architect about your plans.
  • Find a general contractor to handle the things you will not be doing yourself.
  • Check with your city about permist and licenses.

Tips for Ranch Style Renovation

  1. Try to use building materials similar in looks to those used to construct the existing home when any additions that are made.  This helps create continuity.  For example, Victorian style trim would look silly on a sleek ranch style home, while chunky Craftsman details would weigh it down.
  2. Think carefully before you decide to add a second story.  You will lose the look of the ranch and you will also lose some of the convenience of one floor living.
  3. Using natural finish wood on the floors is a wise investment and seems to be attractive to buyers.  Wood floors go well with this style of home.
  4. Don’t underestimate the ability of landscaping to improve the curb appeal of your home.  This is especially tru of Ranch style homes.
  5. Changes should fit into the style of the home.  Many architects believe that changing the exterior look of the home should be avoided if at all possible.
  6. If the home has a basement this can be the perfect place to pick up extra space.  Finishing it off and turning it into an office, den , or bedrrom will get the addition you need with out the expense of changing the exterior.
  7. A garage is oftern another area that can be finished and turned into a room.
  8. Renovating kitchends and bathrooms is always a good investment, and while your’re at it, replace appliances with Energy Star rated aplliances to save money and gree your home. Take a look at some of our other blog post on remodeling ranch homes in our area.

Much of this article provided by “About.com’s Home Improvement”.

Before and After | Mid-Century

For all the years we’ve been in the business and watching cool properties we get to see a lot of diamonds in the rough. This one especially tugged at our hearts when we saw the 1965 vintage, mid-century home in North Asheville in its original and untouched condition. The home sits in the Kimberley Woods neighborhood — one of the many well located, mid-century and ranch home neighborhoods we have here in Asheville. Driving through last week we recently saw the updates and had to share. What do YOU think?

Modern Monday | Rustic Kitchens

Do you own a 70’s or 80’s kit cabin retreat that needs refreshing? Or perhaps a new west Asheville townhouse style home you need to select finishes for? Check out this Houzz article out of the Northwest for inspiration. Northwest design is often an inspiration for us here in Asheville as our earthy cultures mirror our desire to connect indoors and outdoors while repurposing materials. Enjoy!

Little Ranch on a Hill

Yesterday, we toured our client’s updated and expanded little rancher just above Charlotte street and walkable to town. For years we have discussed ranch homes being a great resource for creating your ultimate modern nest and they very much proved us to be true. When it’s completed we will post a bit more on it, but for now we wanted to share a quick sneak peek, along with, our incredible excitement for our clients. Cheers! Kelly and Troy

Crossville Tile Showroom

We stopped in last night to visit Crossville Tile and other home interior vendors at the Airport Design Center last night for the Asheville Home Builder’s Association After Hours Gathering. We loved their selection of dimensional modern and mid-century styled tiles. Stop by for a visit sometime. Cheers!

AHBA After Hours | ProSource Supplies

img_6291ProSource Supplies hosted the Asheville Home Builders Association last night at their new modern showroom. Brandon Bryant of Red Tree Builders invited us along to check it out. {Thanks man!} If you haven’t been there make sure to stop by and see their vast selection of fixtures. The showroom is tucked in behind the new Ford dealership on Brevard Road and the sales people are super helpful. Cheers!prosource-01

Mid-Century Mountain Home | Real Estate Preview

55-high-view-drive-black-small-041-37-55highview41-666x445-72dpiHi Folks! Check out our new VIDEO PREVIEW of this mid-century “Pocket” listing in Black Mountain. Want to know more about this home? Go here for the skinny or give us a call. Cheers! Kelly and Troy

Hands On Design + Build Remodeling

Introducing Patrick FarrarScreen Shot 2015-12-11 at 3.36.07 PM

Kelly and I sat down for one of our portfolio lunches to chat with Patrick Farrar this past week. Patrick is a recent transplant from Palm Springs, otherwise known as Mid-Century Mecca in the states. Patrick has been renovating such homes for 23 years know. Prior to that he restored furniture for a retailer in Miami. Patrick - 02

As a designer Patrick’s aesthetic has been influenced by the design rich communities he has lived in; San Francisco, Miami and Palm Springs. He brings to his clients an ability to edit and simplify their environment while giving it an overall sophisticated and bold expression.Pat Comp 01

As a builder he prefers doing as much of his work hands-on as possible. “I tend to be an orderly guy,” says Patrick. He prefers to maintain some control of the process and end quality. His knowledge of cost-effective procedures and today’s materials adds great value to every project. Patrick -3

His overall portfolio includes many styles of both personal environments to commercial. While I chose to focus on some of his modern interpretations in these photos he enjoys bringing his vision to more traditional homes as well. He is looking forward to seeing how the more earthy aesthetic of Asheville will influence his work. And we look forward to watching. Want to see more of Patrick’s work? Visit either his HOUZZ page or his Website.Screen Shot 2015-12-11 at 3.34.19 PM

And remember that the Modern Asheville Real Estate team can you find the resources for purchasing or selling your modern home, but the team to envision and create your new nest in the mountains.

 

The Do’s and Don’ts of Mid-Century Remodeling

Screen Shot 2015-06-11 at 6.08.57 PMAt Modern Asheville Real Estate, we thought this was a great little article spelling out some of the common mistakes that Kelly and I see when mid-century homes are remodeled. Check out the article by Joan Gand, founder of Chicago Bauhaus and Beyond, here. Thanks Joan!

SOLD | Country Club Ranch Home

Today, we closed on this clean and simple ranch home within walking distance to the North Asheville Country Club for our northern California buyers. This solid, well Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 6.58.07 AMbuilt home is open, one level and has tons of sun light. Having introduced them to one of our designer/builders they now get to have fun making it a cool and tailored pad for their retirement.

Kelly and I love ranch home remodels. Browse the archives of our blog for “ranch” and you will see some great examples of what can be done to make your modern here in Asheville starting with a ranch home, which is essentially a box, in a great location. Need help finding one for yourself? Give us call. It is one of the things we love to do. Cheers!

Modern Mixer | Thank You!

A big thank you to our co-host, Jeff Crawford, for opening his cool home in Mountainbrook last night to so many of our shared friends and the modern community. The Roost remodeled pad looked amazing and everyone enjoyed meeting designer and builder David Way. It was definitely one not to be missed! Mountainbrook

For those of you who didn’t make it or want to see it again enjoy the tour, here, of this modernized, mid-century home. Thanks again and cheers! Kelly and Troy

CLOSED | A Room with a View

Kelly and I closed on this luxury condo today nestled above downtown. Our buyer clients, and Modern Asheville fans, called us wanting a minimal and modernist summer escape from the Texas heat. With lack of inventory in general, especially modern properties, we were able to place them in this Ardmion Comphome which gave them the romantic setting they were looking for. Bringing in one of our design and build team members to plan and budget, Kelly was then able to negotiate a deal that would accommodate modernizing the interior. Today, Kelly wrangled it to a close. Tomorrow, Sally Spiegel and her team will start to demo. Go girl power! By late spring some more happy clients will be enjoying their own modern lifestyle in the mountains of Asheville. Watch along as our team helps more folks make their modern.

Did I tell you that we love what we do! Cheers! Kelly and Troy