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Why You Should Restore This Old House

Are you ready to take on a renovation that will result in an extraordinary home? We aren’t saying it won’t be expensive, and we certainly aren’t saying it won’t take time, but we are saying that it will be worth it to the right buyer.

With 10 bedrooms and two kitchens, it would be possible to live in the house while renovation is happening, avoiding areas where work is going on. Or live in the fully renovated carriage house for the duration if your family is small. It is so big that you can get lost in it.

A huge plus is the 9.5-acre lot at 3700 Brightside Road, just off of Lake Avenue in the Ruxton/Woodbrook area of Baltimore County. With views of conservation land, the feel is countryside, while being only minutes from shopping, recreation on Lake Roland, schools and downtown.

"The median size of a new home increased from 1,938 square feet in 1990 to 2,300 square feet in 2016, but lot sizes during this same period decreased from 8,250 square feet to 6,970 square feet.

“In an effort to keep the cost of new homes down and bring in more revenue, homebuilders have favored building larger homes on smaller lots. Why?

"When home prices appreciate at a fast pace, the land value rises even faster, which in turn drives the cost of homes higher," according to CoreLogic. So if a big backyard is on your list on must-haves, you're most likely to find that in an older home.”*

Well the lot and location seem great. Maybe I should just tear down the existing house and build a new one? NO! Please don’t. Here's why:

Old homes have better-quality construction

The saying "they don't build 'em like they used to" is generally true. Established houses are built to last, and many aspects of the construction cannot be reproduced today. Older homes might be built with wood made from old-growth trees (trees that attained great age by not being significantly disturbed) and therefore more resistant to rot and warping. Plaster and lathe walls (as in this house) are structurally stronger than the drywall construction of modern homes and provide a better sound barrier and insulation. Take a look at this black and white tile flooring in the sun porch. That is real marble, not imitation.

This house has character.

While newer homes will reflect the trends of current times, they won't satisfy other eclectic tastes. If you want a complete stone home, rather than just a stone façade, you can find it here. You can also find hardwood floors, extensive moldings, multi-pane windows, built in bookcases, solid wood doors, and elaborate open staircase. There is also a back staircase and third floor with soaring ceilings and large dormer windows. While many builders do emulate these characteristics, you might prefer to go for the real thing. I love the foyer that features a large door that lead to a flagstone patio with wonderful views.

Sure, the bathrooms need renovation, but the vintage colors can be appreciated for the time being. There ARE nine of them, so take your time!

There are existing architect’s plans for remodeling the downstairs to combine two kitchens into a kitchen/family room to create a more open flow, as well as plans for combining bedrooms to create a wonderful master suite. Or customize your own living space.

After touring this house, I for one would hate to see it torn down. I have admired the façade at a distance from Lake Avenue, and finally getting to see the inside made me wish I had the vision and the dollars to bring it back to its original glory. Maybe you do? And if so, can I follow the progress in another blog?


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