When you think about homes built in the 1960s and 1970s, what comes to mind? Your grandparent’s center hall Colonial? The opening credits of the “Brady Bunch?”
A few years ago, renovating these retro homes was considered the “next big thing.” It’s now a trend that shows no signs of letting up anytime soon. More and more homeowners have the vision to see beyond the four (closed-in) walls in front of them and imagine the endless possibilities of a complete transformation. It takes more than a coat of paint and a new countertop to create a contemporary living space for today’s family.
A Fresh Approach to a Retro Design
“The floor plans of homes built 40 to 60 years ago don’t work well for many of today’s families. The trend toward increasingly more open, flowing floor plans continues to be very strong,” says Richard Dickson.
“We get many requests to redesign and reconfigure rambling split levels and compartmentalized Colonials to complement the modern family’s lifestyle.”
Many of today’s most desirable neighborhoods in and around Princeton are full of homes built in the 60s and 70s. This is where Dickson Development works, so the team can be on-site during renovation and construction.
“People who love their neighborhoods and school systems often prefer to renovate rather than move. Those looking for a new home are attracted to these neighborhoods as well. It’s true here in Princeton but also in many towns across the country,” says Richard. “Suddenly some of these older neighborhoods seem very attractive. They may be a little more affordable as well. There is often a greater value in renovating in these neighborhoods.”
9 Tips to Transform Your Split Level or Colonial Home
Your home should reflect the way you live. That is why today’s flowing, family-centered floor plans invite movement and collaboration and a feeling of openness and comfort. Here are some ideas to remodel your older home:
- Eliminate wasted space. Possibly combine all or parts of the dining room, formal living room and kitchen. By removing the walls between these separate spaces, you gain more room to live the way you want.
- Expand your kitchen to accommodate a central island where your family can eat and congregate. Many families enjoy a majority of their meals at the island, instead of in a separate dining area.
- Add a new laundry area or mudroom with cubbies and other storage space. These rooms, once hidden away, now serve as transitional spaces and a convenient place to hang your coats, book bags and sports equipment.
- Increase overall square footage. Most homes built in the 1960s and 1970s were no more than 2,500 to 3,500 square feet. You may want to add an addition to accommodate your lifestyle; consider adding a family room, sunroom, screened-in porch or creating a new foyer.
- Make your master bedroom a master suite with a luxury spa bathroom. Sought-after features such as larger closets or dressing rooms and bathrooms can be accomplished by 1) utilizing an extra bedroom 2) expanding over the garage or 3) building a second level over a new addition. It also seems that most everyone wants a large shower these days.
- Upgrade the heating and AC units to be more energy efficient. The savings can be significant.
- Add better insulation. One of the biggest problems with homes built before the 1990s was a lack of sufficient insulation. Additional or new insulation will not only save you money but also make you more comfortable.
- Improve the lighting. Add LED recessed lights for general ilumination, and add modern accent fixtures and LED task lighting over the kitchen counters.
- Update the moldings. You can add value–and style–to your home by installing new, more intricate or larger moldings.
A remodel creates a space of enjoyment for you and makes a significant difference in the overall value of your home.
To schedule a consultation, email email@example.com or call Richard Dickson at 609-799-0220.
This is the first of a three-part series on current home renovation trends, from decade to decade. Next up? Tips to transform a home built in the 80s and 90s, when bigger was better.