1960s Colonial Style Home

cbhillwoodAugust 29, 2013

Hello! We're interested in purchasing this home, but we're less than thrilled with the outside. It seems something is off (perhaps the empty space above the gable), and we really don't like the half vinyl/half brick look that really puts the home in the 1960s-80s. Any suggestions for what we could do to improve the looks of this home? Showed it to a friend and they said they "hated it." We think the outside needs improvement and want to know what can be done before we invest in this purchase.

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Seems like should have another window upstairs centered over porch roof peak. Also a couple of lights that are kind of long on either side of garage door about even with the windows in the garage door. Other than that I like it .Tree out toward the left where bare spot is would be nice. If you had the money I think the porch pillars are rather skinny, I'd want to change that.& add some spokes or something to the piece on the wood there near the peak, it's kind of too small to suit me! I'm just a home owner telling you what I would do!

    Bookmark   August 30, 2013 at 12:26AM
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This is a raised ranch home. It would only be a Colonial home in the mind of a real estate person. However, with some investment it can be more like a Colonial Revival.

I would double the upstairs windows (with a trim board between them), make them taller, avoid a window above the portico, and double the diameter of the portico columns. I would complete the Classical pediment of the portico by returning the crown cornice molding all the way across the bottom and remove the circle vent.

You might cover the brick or if it is in the same plane as the siding you might paint it. Larger corner boards and a facia board under the main roof eave would also help.

This post was edited by Renovator8 on Sun, Sep 1, 13 at 16:58

    Bookmark   September 1, 2013 at 1:59PM
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"Hate it" is pretty harsh! it's much prettier than I expected it to be. I think that the porch w/ the simple columns (or are they posts?) is "too light" for the house. I'd work on the porch by adding some more posts/columns, railings, and perhaps even some trim. :)

    Bookmark   September 1, 2013 at 6:07PM
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It's a 1960s style suburban house. They are all over the place. Acres of them!

What is really important is ... is it well-maintained? Can you afford it? Do you like the layout? Do you like the location? Is it close to work and school? Can you do what's important to you without having to drive a lot?

Search Google's Images for colonial homes and look at the windows and porches ...

What strikes me as a visual flaw is that the upper windows are so short, and in a classic colonial house they were equal height top and bottom. Installing taller windows would be relatively easy. Doubling them, as Renovator suggested, would be harder, but still possible. If you did that, do upper and lower windows and keep them matching heights.

If there is a room over the entry that could benefit from having a window, add one.

Fattening up the porch columns and trim would do a lot for the house. The posts are way too skinny - visually - for the width of the porch roof. I like that the porch is big enough to actually have benches on, BTW.

Other changes, which unlike the windows are easy to DIY, would be to widen the walkway until it's the same width as the front doorway. I'd lay a brick edging to match the lower part of the house.

Increasing the width of the foundation plantings would also add some "street appeal" to the house.

    Bookmark   September 2, 2013 at 7:09AM
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Well maybe your friend is jealous...It's far from an unattractive looking house. Main thing is that you like the house inside, the outside can always be improved over the years. It could be small things that can make the difference for now if the outside bothers you that much like painting the entrance door, garage door and shutters a different color. Benjamin Moore has a nice palette of historical colors. I'm certain one of those would be just perfect for your house. They are rich looking colors. Besides that I think it's a lovely house. You might want one day to close the front porch and make it like an enclosed veranda which would look very nice and is so enjoyable to have in the summer. I love the paved drive to the garage and the sidewalk to the house.


    Bookmark   September 2, 2013 at 9:34AM
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It's not ugly, just blah. I concur with others that making the windows taller, especially upstairs, is a definite, and that they should either be doubled (preferable) or a third window added, depending on what works best with the interior layout. The porch columns are also an obvious cheap easy fix. But, if you could spend the money, I would put a classic (shed roof) front porch across the front of the house. That would make a huge difference. I'd also consider wider, classic wood siding on the front.

Is there something funky going on with the roofline, or is it just a function of the photo?

    Bookmark   September 3, 2013 at 12:30AM
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I think it just needs curb appeal. heavier plantings in deep curved beds near the house on each end to balance out the heaviness created by the bed in front, some nice large pots of pretty flowers on each side of the garage, and on the porch, maybe work on the porch columns or add a partial rail as suggested to emphasize the entry. Paint the door. Not a bad or ugly house at all. By emphasizing the entry it will draw the eye away from the gable area and more to the front door. If it is sound and in a good location and the interior fits your needs, the rest is just dressing.

    Bookmark   September 3, 2013 at 8:28AM
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