How old is your house
designideas4me
February 1, 2013 in Polls
A.................2011-2013

B......................2008-2010

C.......................2007-2008

D...........................2004-2006

E.......................2000-2003

F..........................1995-1999

G..........................1990-1994

H..........................1985-1989


OLDER......................what year?



Tell us something you like and dislike about your house based on the year it was built
a
b
c
d
e
f
g
h
I
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Dytecture
I would say one can tell when a house was built by the decades ie: 2000s vs 2010s.

Not only are houses getting bigger, but the lots are getting narrower in order to squeeze in maximum number of lots on a street.
February 1, 2013 at 7:16PM     
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designideas4me
wow I never knew that. thats an interesting observation. makes sence.
February 1, 2013 at 7:18PM     
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designideas4me
The house is bigger but the lot is smaller or just narrower?
February 1, 2013 at 7:19PM     
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Dytecture
Lots are narrower so the houses are more 'skinny' but deep.
February 1, 2013 at 7:23PM     
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fordjo1
my house was built in the 1920's. The bathroom and kitchen are very small. The best thing about the area I live is that the homes are on huge parcels of land in the middle of the city.
February 1, 2013 at 7:23PM     
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designideas4me
starting to feel like I should have given more choices besides OLDER...............lol............. seems many have older homes.
February 1, 2013 at 7:24PM     
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Sunday
I am closing on my new construction house in one week. I love the foam insulation and awesome windows!
February 1, 2013 at 7:26PM     
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designideas4me
Did older houses used to be built on more land because maybe land was cheaper? How does that factor in with the price of building materials today versus years ago?
February 1, 2013 at 7:26PM   
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favoritegram
Mine was built in the 70's. Who thought a step down to all rooms from the center hall was a smart design idea?
February 1, 2013 at 7:27PM     
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Sunday
My existing house was built in 1978 and has a huge "basketball court" size LV and tiny kitchen and bathrooms. Who thought that was a good idea?
February 1, 2013 at 7:29PM     
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designideas4me
lol...............favoritegram............... oh I remember those..............like a split level we called it.

Sunday................ I am jealous..........................very true the new Green Features I have seen in model homes near me ar great. That spray on insulation looks like a big energy saver. can that be done to remodel an older house?
February 1, 2013 at 7:30PM     
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designideas4me
God only knows what these builders were thinking.. I have a few walls that are angled and i hate them. Already framed one to make it 90 degrees.
February 1, 2013 at 7:31PM     
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onthefence
Ours was built in 1956. I have a love hate relationship with my favorite feature. It's a central fireplace that divides the living room from the kitchen/dining. There is a fireplace on the front (living room) and fireplace in a different position on the kitchen side. It's an 8 ft long wall of brick.

The downside is.....it's an 8 ft long wall of brick with fireplaces on both sides.
February 1, 2013 at 7:35PM     
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donnag631
Upside is that at least 13 years of mortgage are paid : ) Downside is that every kitchen appliance broke for good this year, so am redoing the kitchen . . . and the baths. There goes the 13 years of paid mortgage ; )
February 1, 2013 at 7:48PM     
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donnag631
oops, should have said built in 2000
February 1, 2013 at 7:48PM   
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designideas4me
on the fence..........thats kinda funny..

donna... ironic and true

you cant win !!
February 1, 2013 at 7:53PM     
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designideas4me
I always wanted as new a house as I could afford sice I felt less would break and things would be in better condition longer. Although I could have bought a 2007 but ended up with a 2004 because of the school district and the heated pool. But unfortunately accepted these horrible oak cabinets and ugly carpet as well. Those are my trade offs.
February 1, 2013 at 7:56PM     
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747.2fra
1935. Love the simplicity. Love the location (walking distance to everything). Sometimes I wish the yard were a bit bigger. But really we have made this our dream home.
February 1, 2013 at 8:05PM     
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tclary
I am closing on my new home in a few weeks. I built on an infill lot mainly for location. The large lot and mature trees is sorely lacking in new construction neighborhoods at an entry level to modest price point. What I love most about the new home is that I was able give every bathroom it's own private bath. What I like least is that I couldn't afford such a luxury, when I truly needed the space, with a young family!
February 1, 2013 at 8:22PM     
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Diana Bier Interiors, LLC
1924, before cookie cutter tract houses. I love all the architectural features--french doors in the living room, dining room, and sunroom; perfectly proportioned moldings; plaster walls; old oak flooring; walk-up attic; fireplace. What I don't like is the old scary basement, limited closet space, and the original bathrooms and kitchen, which we have totally renovated. I also love our village, which is the perfect combination of a small town very close to a large city, and is a real neighborhood and a wonderful place to raise a family.
February 1, 2013 at 8:30PM     
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judianna20
May I list all of them? #1 1952, #2 1935, #3 1913, #4 1880, #5 1986, #6 1840, #7 2007. Loved them all, but #3 was so special for us. It was the first house we purchased together. It was custom built in 1913 by a gentleman for his wife. The woodwork was amazing; it had a breakfast room; there was a maid's bell in the floor under the dining room table; the hardwood floors were peach; the gardens were fashioned after English Gardens; and the stucco exterior had ivy…two different kinds as the variety on the back was green year 'round to insulate in the winter and summer and the ivy on the front (West) had big fat leaves only in the Summer to keep the house cool. We were young and had no business owning something so wonderful, but, as luck would have it, the couple, then well into their 80's, saw us as people who would carry on their love of the house…and we did for 22 years.
February 1, 2013 at 8:56PM     
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Classic Kate
1927 Sears Kit home The Hamilton. tiny tiny tiny. one closet, in the entire house. :) walk in kitchen pantry. I bought it from the builders 80 year old daughter, she lived here her entire life. Original wallpaper in bedroom and dining room.. hideous, but keeping it for historical reasons.
February 1, 2013 at 9:06PM     
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kjdick
Our's is a 1915 home. Love all the old woodwork.:) Terribly hard for me to see how trim is skimpy and skipped over in newer houses. Though, I'm sure all my friends newer places are insulated and warmer than ours. :/
February 1, 2013 at 9:15PM     
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Margaret Phillips
Currently live in a house that was built in 1979. Huge lot. Just as someone else remarked above I have a huge 35 ft living room, big bedrooms but gosh darn the kitchen and bathrooms are really small. I grew up in a split level built by my parents in 1956, choppy rooms, small closets, I still shudder at the whole split level idea. Several charming NYC apartments of various layouts and pros and cons. I lived in a house built in 1883 that was absolutely charming. I have owned various properties around the country by now. Areas that are built up with no land in sight certainly are building larger on smaller existing lots (after leveling existing home to make way for the new) areas like mine they are still building freely on former pasture lands etc. having lived in various homes of different vintages and remodeled many homes, my choice is to build from ground up. With quality architect and builder. It is a huge headache but with a large binder and many notes it is the way I steer people to go. Sometimes people will spend more money remodeling than if they leveled the place in the first place. Good materials, closets, kitchens, baths and windows where you want. I know I spent too much money on my existing home and it will never be right.
February 1, 2013 at 9:56PM   
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momof5x
Our new home will finish in a few weeks time, it is at the stage where last minute alterations are being done, paint work, and landscaping are also being done.

I forgot to mention what I like and don't like about it..although we are not yet living in it, looking back design wise, I wish we had more inbuilt closets in like the laundry room ( which is new for me addition for me) but got lost in the thought of just having a laundry room, no problem though I will work something out. I would have liked a little balcony ( as I have now) in bedroom but just have the railing representative of a balcony. The good thing this is made of concrete rather than iron ( meaning less cleaning!) Plus they look better too.

The house will have a barbecue area on top of roof and a great outdoor sitting area . We did foundation/piling on a plot of empty land ( our land ) ready and prepared for any future building additions. It is good to do all foundation work on the land all at once. It prevents future issues with soil settlement.

We don't have bathroom fans ( which seem to always have problems and are a pain to clean) as such but rather some new technology that is connected through the ceiling ( sorry, not sure of the technical details here ). There are these little discreet square openings on the outside of the exterior of the house- and this is the ventilation part. I think the architectural minded out there will know more about that.

The exterior is very modern and impressive in style, it took us many years to get to this point. I would have liked to have been in the house much earlier but you find many setbacks either with delivery of products ( for one reason or another), one job gets delayed as another hasn't completed his area of work etc and the list can go on. Think of weeks or months in delays so plan well ahead if you have a deadline to be in your new house! That's my advice. In the end if there is something you find not liking, you will find a way around it. Do quality work as this will add value to your house too.
February 1, 2013 at 10:04PM   
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thedarlingsbecca
Two of my homes have been on corner lots which allowed the garage doors and driveway to be on one side instead of in the front. Makes backyard far less deep, but very wide which I like. Have always looked down other neighbors backyards. Front lawns have been as large or larger than backyards. 1994 house this way plus - Good flow from room to room, pocket doors, wide open entryways between kitchen and family room. Bay windows in two rooms, Palladium windows in one room, very large master bedroom and bathroom, walk-in attic over garage on second floor. Love vaulted ceilings, but problems with heat and a/c flow due to vaulted entryway and second floor loft. Like good size of covered area at front doorway. Has deck and screened porch in back. In newer homes, I dislike open concept- think it is wanted mostly by singles, young couples & people with small children. When children become kids, especially teens, you WANT some separation! Prefer garages on side (or back like in city).
February 1, 2013 at 10:37PM   
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thedarlingsbecca
1994 house - Oh, large kitchen w island. Lots of closets. Another bay window with built-in sitting area on 2nd floor.
February 1, 2013 at 10:41PM   
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designideas4me
Joice... where do you live?

tclary................... yes good point. I remember wanting those big trees and privacy but I would have had to buy an older home which didnt appeal to me as much as a newer one and the newer homes in the more maturely landscaped area where too expensive so again a trade off to get the newer home in the price range I had to take one with less mature landscaping.

Clasic kate... what is a sears kit home? Is that a real thing or does it just mean a small house?



kjdick.............. wow 1915................... What year did you buy it? I assume your not 98...........lol
Has it had many problems?
February 1, 2013 at 11:03PM     
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designideas4me
Margret..................you said.............Sometimes people will spend more money remodeling than if they leveled the place in the first place. Are you saying its less money to stay on the land you have and own and rebuild than to remodel if you plan to do most of the house? I assume if you look at the cost to buy a new house verses the cost to buy land and build that you definately spend more to buy land and build.
February 1, 2013 at 11:09PM   
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Eagledzines
1984. Three bedrooms, 1 bath. Colonial, entry open to the second floor.Past the glory days of Victorian and Craftsman and row housing based on the industrialization. We are the generation of subdivisions. We designed our own, according to the way we lived at the time with a young family. Doesn't suit us anymore. Two stories. Detached garage. 1500 square feet. More sq. ft. than many of the generation before us.
February 1, 2013 at 11:11PM     
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designideas4me
Eagledzines.........................yes I think colonial describes what I grew up in ..........It was popular in the 70s and 80s and had a square shape with 2 levels and lots of different rooms separated by walls. Brings back memories.


Ok So I am going to add this question for anyone who is participating in this discussion:


Since I see sooooooooooooo many people have older homes.............my question is why have you not bought something newer? Money? No reason to move, you love where you live? Upside down? Invested too much and wont get it back? The house is paid off !! I would love to understand why many of you choose to live in older houses.

If my house was paid off and in great shape and I invested a lot to make it just how I like than I suppose i might see no reason to move. On the other hand, if the house was too big or small for my needs or had too many expensive repair issues than I might want to move to a newer house.
February 1, 2013 at 11:22PM     
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Sigrid
My house was built in the 1910s. I love all the detail. We have fabulous fireplace surrounds; stained glass, including a long landscape panel rumored to be Tiffany (but not signed, which might be why it is still there); a huge nearly wrap-around porch. The house is gorgeous. It's what McMansions aspire to be.

The landscaping was laid out nicely years ago, we have mature trees, including a prolific butternut (have to figure out how to get the nuts before the worms, do, though), magnolias, lilacs, rhodos and a monumental chestnut.

Dislikes: steep, narrow stairs; unheated, detached garage --- the car is COLD in the winter; windows that could be tighter; and the whole, complex lead paint issue.
February 2, 2013 at 12:02AM     
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Billie G
We live in a 1880 built house and we love everything about it but the fact that there are not enough built in closets for storage. Being a European, I wanted naturally to live in a period house, but sometimes I do wish I could live in a beautiful new and bigger space, like shown on so many Houzz ideabooks.
February 2, 2013 at 12:04AM     
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Sigrid
@DesignIdeas4Me:

I bought my older house. As I said, it's what McMansions aspire to be. Why have a copy if you can have an original?

Previous owners we did the heating, electricity and kitchen, so there are no problems there. In fact, we have wiring for an elaborate stereo system, as well as internet and cable. The slate and copper roof was entirely replaced 15 years ago, they last for 100 years, so it be good until my kids are in their 90s.

Ultimately, your question assumes that modern houses are poorly built. You seem to think after 20-40 years, they should be discarded in favor of newer ones. It's hardly a winning argument for choosing new over old.
February 2, 2013 at 12:15AM     
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Sunday
Designideas4me: Foam can be sprayed into your attic,
but not exterior walls once the house is built.
February 2, 2013 at 5:40AM   
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feeny
Our house is from the 1920's, and I LOVE all its details. Have to say I would never want to live in a house built recently--or really any time after the 1930's. Older houses just have so much character, beautiful thick wood trim and mantels, solid wood doors, built in linen closets, bookshelves, china cabinets, cedar-lined walk in storage closets, and other details that would cost a fortune today to replicate. Drawbacks? Our back yard isn't large enough for my avid gardening, and I wish we had a second bathroom on the second floor. Bathrooms as a whole are smaller than I find ideal. But would I trade all the other details for a larger or extra bathroom in a newer house? Never. With rare exceptions (such as houses people have spent a fortune to build, used expensive, solid materials, and had designed by a truly talented architect), I just couldn't live with the flimsy materials and impoverished details of so many recently-built houses.
February 2, 2013 at 5:48AM     
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Kristine
We are coming up on the 1 year anniversary of purchasing our 1927 bungalow. Small kitchen, small bath, but great old neighborhood and schools!
February 2, 2013 at 6:07AM     
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Diana Bier Interiors, LLC
Why not move from an old home to a new one? Wow, let me count the ways! The charm, history, and utter solid construction of an old custom built home is far preferable to me than some new flimsy, "open concept" house! Sheetrock walls like paper, skimpy moldings, the whole first floor is one open room, no "nooks and crannies," huge rooms with no real purpose, 20-foot ceilings, in other words, a cavernous cold pit with no architectural integrity, is not where I want to live. Add to that the ubiquitous stainless steel appliances, ugly speckled granite countertops, and ginormous jacuzzi tubs, and I want to run screaming back to my cozy warm charming house!
February 2, 2013 at 6:39AM     
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Linda
1931 brick Georgian with clay tile roof on a double lot with two huge trees (13 feet in circumference). The inside is as close to original as possible; beautiful woodwork, oak floors, two fireplaces, tile in the bathrooms and kitchen, with attached two car garage on one side and sunroom on the other. About the only major work we've done is taking off all the wallpaper and painting the plaster walls.

What I like is the classic look and feel of a well-designed home with plentiful windows and the solid feel of quality built and craftsmanship of older custom construction.

What I don't like is no closet or mudroom on the first floor, the staircase needs reattached to the walls, the electrical outlets are in short supply, the original plumbing is almost impossible to find replacement parts and the garage doors are only 7.5 feet wide. Plus, the general pain factor of working on a home built by a commercial construction company - 1931 house with electrical completely in conduit and 4 inches of poured concrete between basement ceiling and kitchen floor makes it tough to make any changes.
February 2, 2013 at 6:45AM   
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747.2fra
Designideas4me - you ask why buy an old house? Well, we love the character, the location, the size, the history and the good bones that came with the house. We've enjoyed remodeling over the years. Our utility bills (gas& electric combined) average at $40/mo. We are able to walk 80% of the time (work, groceries, restaurants, movies, plays, etc) For us the question is why go new?
February 2, 2013 at 6:52AM     
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rredpenn
This November, we bought a house built in 1984, with the energy crisis fresh in the owner/builder's mind. What we like about it is the privacy. It is back from the street, in the woods on 5 acres, 15 minutes from downtown. Very well thought-out, insulated and laid out to capture sunlight in winter but it has mature trees for summer shade/cooling. It's got double 2x4 walls and is completely brick-sided. It has nice deep windowsills! It's a ranch, one-level living, perfect for our empty nest, with 9 ft ceilings in the downstairs bedrooms for the "kids" when they visit. It's just a bit smaller than our home of 27 years, but that was the idea! Less yard work too, because it's mostly woods!

I love the coziness of it (we are in Zone 5, and had some bone chilling weather this winter). BUT, It isn't much to look at from the front. The builder minimized windows at the front (north) side of the house, so there is only one window (dining room) and a leaded glass front entry door. The rest of the house has windows all at the back, south facing and with a gorgeous wooded view. From the outside, the back of the house is gorgeous. The front, not so much. The front entry "deck" will need to be redone in stone someday. It's a cheesy deck covering up a possible drainage issue that we will address this summer. And of course, it's got three ugly garage doors too.

We looked for 5 years for this kind of place... wooded lot and privacy, main floor master suite with lots of SF, fairly recent mechanicals and a floorplan that allowed plenty of room for hubby's hobbies (music and woodworking). This was the house that finally fit those needs. We looked at many, many old homes in our area which had the trees and the character; however, they all needed major structural work (foundation, leveling floors, adding AC systems, etc). We'd already been through a major remodel of the previous house. Just didn't want to go there.

We also didn't want to build or buy new. Over the years, we watched our past neighborhood grow from 7 homes to 400 homes, and the building industry is just so wasteful. Every single one of them created dumpsters full of materials. Buying an existing home seemed to us to be the ultimate recycling program. We did have to tear out three rooms of carpet and a 12 foot wall of fireplace rock in the new house. The carpet got cut up, and used as a pad for the mason who installed our new fireplace stone before we disposed of it. And, the old fireplace rocks (big irregular river boulders.. UGLY 70's style) have now become stepping stones and a rim around our garden area. The amount of materials we've thrown away so far is much less than the full dumpsters we see at new construction sites. And, I feel good about that.

There are many existing homes in our market, and we knew we'd find the right one eventually. We did! I've been lurking on Houzz getting ideas since we bought it... Thanks to everyone who posts on the discussions. This website has been wonderful for me to learn from, and it has given me great inspiration.
February 2, 2013 at 7:30AM     
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greglitkecontracting
Our house is 1969!
February 2, 2013 at 7:33AM   
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twalker13
My home was built in 1942 in Los Angeles. Wish it had more closet space but I love my house!
February 2, 2013 at 8:35AM   
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yvonnecmartin
1964. This was the era of built-ins in the bedrooms, so we don't need dressers. Our house was high-end in its day, so has many features not found in others of that era--double-faced marble fireplace, gas grill in the kitchen, lots of closets, lots of windows including 30 feet in the dining-family room. Some vintage features: rotating TV antenna on the roof and intercom system.
February 2, 2013 at 8:50AM     
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Linda
I love built-ins! My house has a built in telephone niche with folding seat and corner cabinets in the dining room with matching bookcase in the living room. I would love to have closet built-ins but in an old house, I'm lucky to just have decent closets
February 2, 2013 at 9:01AM   
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zealart
Mine was built in the 70's and has large bedrooms and great extra storage. It's a condo and comparing it to the more recent current homes, has far larger rooms and more closets. The bathrooms are small, but not uncomfortable, which I have grown to really appreciate. Less floor to clean and makes me glad that the extra space went towards more closet space and larger rooms.
February 2, 2013 at 9:03AM     
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groveraxle
1910. Two bedroom, one bath craftsman bungalow. Perfect for a single person. I love the gorgeous woodwork, solid construction, beautiful lines, and perfectly proportioned rooms. And I love being in the city center, four blocks from a major university. What I don't like are the pitiful closets, but this is solved with armoires in every room.

I chose this house after moving from a four bedroom, three bath house I designed and built myself in a gated community. Best move I ever made.
February 2, 2013 at 9:08AM     
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designideas4me
Sigrid...............Its not an insult. I am just I suppose more personally familiar with new homes from whats for sale in this area and the older homes are in the 1990s or 1980s or so and to me they are not as appealing as the brand new houses. But I suppose houses from 1920 or 1930 can have a lot of charm and appeal if in a beautiful picturesque area and city. Of course on the east coast where I grew up I recall many 100 yr old houses that were very beautiful but here in california I mainly see newer homes and so I am inclined to be drawn to a new house.

I never lived in an old house.. one built in the 19203 or 30s or 40 or 50s or 60s so maybe I am scared of the unknown...and tend to think there is more to go wrong or need repair.

I could see living in a charming old house if it meant having a great location.

But when did most of you buy your houses? Would you today buy a house built in 1960 over a house built in 2012 if the price was equal and so was the location? It seems many of you feel the construction was better years ago and the house had more charm.

I think too that I love modern style so if it wasnt that mid century modern look which seems to me is created by renovation to update and make beautiful, that I would choose a newer modern house.

I suspect many of you with older homes like a more traditional style or am I wrong?

Have many people remodeled the kitchens and other parts of these older homes or are you happy with the function and look of older cabinets and appliances and flooring? Just asking and trying to learn. Not judging.
February 2, 2013 at 11:11AM   
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designideas4me
Check it out...................44 votes already for houses older than 1985.................. I didnt expect that. I would have given different options for the original poll. My frame of referenceI suppose is based on where I live. Not like I havent traveled and lived other places. I maybe assumed that a lot of updating and remodeling was being done to people recently buying homes but perhaps the opposite is true.
February 2, 2013 at 11:14AM     
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feeny
In our 1920's house we completely renovated the kitchen and built a sunroom/great room addition where a large screened porch used to be. Otherwise all the rest of the details are original and, thankfully, intact.
February 2, 2013 at 11:18AM     
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Interiors International, Inc.
It would be older but it burn down so I'm building a new one.
February 2, 2013 at 11:20AM   
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jamieandjenn
1752 colonial, the first house built in town. It is in desperate need of restoration. What did we get ourselves into? Hopefully some home improvement TV show will save us! :)
February 2, 2013 at 11:26AM     
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feeny
But how exciting and wonderful, jamieandjenn! It is so rare to find a house of that era for sale anywhere in the US!
February 2, 2013 at 11:28AM   
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sruggi
Our house was built in 1994 on a long, narrow lot. The downside is the proximity of neighbors but the upside is that most rooms open onto a beautiful interior courtyard.
February 2, 2013 at 11:29AM   
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Linda
Yes, I would be more comfortable buying a 1960 home than a 2012 home. The best locations were used many years ago and newer houses are usually much less conveniently located or are brownfield infill as redevelopment site or teardowns where the new house doesn't fit well into the existing neighborhood.

Personally, I actually look more to the construction quality and functionality of the home than to the particular style. Split level houses from the 70s are about the only ones I really truly dislike, and 1920s era home are my favorites. But, I also love the beautiful postwar ranches and Victorians also.

I look for a house which was considered upscale when it was built rather a basic builder's special of any era. I want a house that was quite desirable with higher end features, like a builder's own showcase of his skills whether it was built in 1900, 1930 or 1960 or even later. Also, I prefer a compact, manageable house to the McMansions or the large Victorians...I'm tired of living in a place that always needs something cleaned or repaired or oiled or adjusted or...
February 2, 2013 at 11:37AM     
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onthefence
IMO the worst downside of older homes (1960ish and earlier) is the insulation and windows.

From a structural standpoint though, I think they can't be beat. When you think about people who are changing rooms from what was built originally with the house, it's generally because they don't like the appearance or the layout. It's rare to hear people talking about their home falling apart.

Our kitchen is like that. Ugly as sin and badly laid out. When we took out a peninsula though, it took serious work with sledgehammers. Those things were built to stay!
February 2, 2013 at 11:41AM     
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Art & Interiors by Lisa
Our house was built in 1954. Like the plaster walls over drywall, that it is all brick and has original hardwood floors. Don't like the slightly awkward older kitchen layout, drafty windows, and the swirls in the plaster on walls and ceiling, and bedrooms slightly smaller than I would like.
February 2, 2013 at 11:41AM   
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Jayme H.
This one is from the 70's but we were lucky enough to have vaulted ceilings in the main living area, bathroom and one bedroom...plus a nice floor plan. Have owned two older homes, 1912, 1906...LOVED!
February 2, 2013 at 11:56AM   
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designideas4me
onthefence........so I guess that goes back to my question. if your house is ugly like you say........are you choosing to stay and remodel due to financial concerns or due to not wanting or liking a newer style house? when people feel the house is outdated like I see on so many discussions why do they choose to stay and remodel when it can cost a fortune to do so as opposed to selling and getting a newer already renavated house? Have most of you with older homes lived in them for many years? Over 20years? Are they paid off so why move and get a new loan? I guess those are questions for a new discussion but I am curious. I see so many discussions with older homes and it makes me wonder, I am getting a sense from what is being said that most people get set in their ways and used to what is familiar and that maybe change is not so easy to make. Or maybe we just invest so much money in our existing house that it would be hard to leave and we wont get a return on what we put in. But if the house is one you bought a while back and its was before the market boom than I would think its worth much more so in that respect why not sell and move? My mother had a condo in new york she bought in 1989 and it cost 80k and when she sold it in 2009 she got 270k for it which we used to buy a pretty new house in Ca. But of course had she stayed in New York and tried to buy a newer house the price would have been way out of her means. My sister lives in DC and has an old house, actually its alexandria va. and she talks about how things are always needing repairs. I personally lived in Boston for 10 years and yes the brownstones are beautiful and expensive . But the houses built in the 60-70-80- that I lived in were not that nice. Looking back I would say if you were rich and could afford a house thats 500k and above you could get a gorgeous historic house in Boston or the suburbs. But if you were in the under 250k range and bought a house of that age it would be pretty run down. So now my train of thought says that people with older homes that have great charm and style must have very expensive homes............true?
February 2, 2013 at 12:35PM   
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feeny
I agree Jayme, the best house I've ever lived in was also the oldest--a Craftsman with original woodwork from 1918. It was a perfect little gem.
February 2, 2013 at 12:37PM   
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designideas4me
joice.................how can your gas and electric bill be only 40 a month?
February 2, 2013 at 12:42PM   
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feeny
Re: "People who have historic homes with great charm and style must have very expensive homes": It depends entirely on where you live, designideas4me. On either of the coasts, our lovely, fairly large, 3 story historic house in a comparably nice neighborhood would sell for well over a million; in the midwest it is worth a little over $300,000. So it was both affordable to buy (15 years ago) and well worth renovating in the areas where we wanted it updated. Plus we have no intention of moving for at least another 15-20 years, so renovating it in ways that suit our taste and lifestyle is worth the time and money.
February 2, 2013 at 12:43PM     
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Linda
One of the best features of the Craftsman bungalow was that the build quality, charm and style were a part of all but the most modest of homes. Utilitarian or builder grade flooring then would count as an upgrade now. The Aladdin kit homes company used to advertise that they would pay $1 for every knot that a buyer could find in the supplied materials. Truly amazing when you realize that included framing lumber and subfloor materials, not just finish materials.

My 1931 windows are much superior to most of the windows available today. They have built in metal projecting strips and matching inset channels in the frames and the upper and lower sash lock together with metal weatherstripping. When you combine that draft proofing with tight fitting wood storms, their efficiency matches up to anything except the really expensive windows today.
February 2, 2013 at 12:54PM     
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onthefence
designideas4me - well, the whole house isn't ugly. We've remodeled/updated most rooms. The kitchen is the only thing left. Then an interior paint job for the whole shebang. We've stayed for a variety of reasons. Love the neighborhood. Love many of the architectural features of the house. We've taken much of this house and made it our own within the style of the house - or at least I think so. Yes, there are things this house will never have that a newer/different house might. But a newer/different house would lack many of the things we DO have now.

We've been here for over 25 years. It's home. A box with bigger/better/newer features would just mean starting over for us. When we do retire and evaluate whether to move out of state, we may do just that. But for now, we're happy just plodding along ;-)
February 2, 2013 at 12:58PM     
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wildfan
Our first house was built in 1917. It was in town on a very small lot. Now that we have three children, we prefer to live on the outskirts of town where the lots are much larger and wooded. I like to be near nature and have room to run and play. Here that means you build or buy new. I think it depends on your area and preference. Before we had kids all we looked at were older houses. It is hard and very costly to replicate their charm and appeal.
February 2, 2013 at 3:19PM   
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kjdick
Desighnideas4me: We moved in this hous in 2006 and nope, I'm not 98. Just 34. Lol
Biggest problem with older homes is definitely the lack of insulation. Next issues would be dealing with the crazy things other people did to the house before you. Like, Making ductwork out of cardboard and duct tape. ??? I wish people would truly leave houses alone and not try and fix them by themselves when they do not know what they're doing. That's not just the contractor's daughter speaking in me.
Last not favorite would be the smaller closets or lack there of in older houses. Not such a bad thing though. Keeps you from accumulating too much junk.
Thankfully we have a good sized basement with high enough ceilings for finishing. Good sized kitchen and bathroom due some other renovations.
February 2, 2013 at 4:08PM   
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747.2fra
Designideas4me - regarding the utility bills its a combo of small house and excellent insulation. Since our house and lot are smaller it doesn't cost a fortune to get the best insulation, finishes,etc. we are in zone 4 so it gets pretty cold but we don't need air conditioning either because we have lovely huge shade trees in our neighborhood.

We bought our house in 2004. We are in our early 30's. When we purchased older homes were more expensive per square foot than new homes. We decided smaller and closer worked better for our lifestyle. I could spend money on my home or gas. Our preference was to spend on the home.

You ask about whether people like the older styles or want to remodel - have you ever lived in a house and not changes something?
February 2, 2013 at 4:33PM   
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PRO
Jill J. Wallace, Color Redesign
1994. Not too sandwiched with neighbors and not a complete cookie cutter sub. came with completely blank yard except two maples out front, thin brown grass and not so pretty small straight line garden near front entry. 14 years has changed the grass green and thick (except MI winters of course), 10-15' tall white pine, tri breech, and river birch trees , bigger non straight gardens. Nice feature of this home is a wider than normal 2nd floor hallway to bedrooms. Came from a 1948 bungalow (hubby's first house owned) with plaster walls and character. More used to the dry wall now.... Latest remodel was losing the 18 year 4x4 white tiles in the master and main baths. Sooo nice and updated now!
February 2, 2013 at 5:14PM   
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Regina Rogowskyj
1920
February 2, 2013 at 5:15PM   
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peetsoo
We built our home 15 years ago - it was fun having a say in the layout but at the time we could not afford the upgrades so went with builder's grade everything - even linoleum throughout most of the main living areas (our priority was geting the square footage, ceiling details, quality roofing and brick ). We just recently replaced the flooring to hardwood and have put in many wonderful touches to "cozy" it up and it is becoming the home I envisioned when we built it. The plus to waiting this long I suppose is that the finishes are now fresh rather than dated. I must say that I love the character in older homes...........but have heard many horror stories about the problems that can arise when one gets into rennovating .......... pros and cons with every choice I suppose...........
February 2, 2013 at 5:38PM   
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alibonelli
We built what i'll call a modern ranch in 2010. Five years earlier we were driving around and found a beautiful 7 acre lot with huge maple trees. It's private, but only 15 miles to the office and 3 miles to 'town'. My husband's family is 40 minutes one way and mine is 30 minutes in the opposite direction. It's just right for us. We could have purchased a 150 year old farm house with great character, but my husband is 6' 9" tall. He has to duck his head almost everywhere he goes and it didn't make fiscal sense to redo every single doorway in an older home. Our new place has 7' interior doorways, 8' exterior doors, higher counters, open floor plan... we spent 5 years on the design. My only downside was that I cried whenever something got scratched or scuffed up! I am slowly getting over that. We both still have a fondness for other styles (Victorians, Tudors, Beach Boxes) and try to rent them when we go on vacation instead of a condo/hotel.
Bottom line - you can make either work. It just depends on what is available in your area that fits your style and budget.
February 2, 2013 at 6:49PM     
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shinaynaye
Our house was built in 1958. It is a rectangle without any architecture. There is a large kitchen, but they layout is awful. There is a large window where there is supposed to be a table and chairs, which could be used for much needed counter space if there wasn't a huge window there. There is no pantry as well. There are many small rooms, and I prefer a more open concept. We decided on this older house because we have 1/4 acre for the pups to enjoy. I suppose you trade one for the other...
February 2, 2013 at 7:41PM   
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flgrandma
My house was built in 1994. It's OK, but I don't like the kitchen cabinets ( some sort of bleached look).. Also, the guest bath is way too small and the sink in that room is too low. Lots of other small things I would change, but overall the flow is fine.
February 2, 2013 at 7:47PM   
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designideas4me
linda what does this mean?brownfield infill as redevelopment site
February 2, 2013 at 7:52PM   
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yvonnecmartin
I can add some comments on why many of us live in older houses. First, the location including closeness to schools and interesting shopping; second, the character of the neighborhood including trees, houses of different styles, and people of different ages and ethnicities; third, the quality of construction and character of the house (real plaster walls, solid wood doors, an actual door to close off the mess in the kitchen from guests in the dining room); fourth, we've lived here a while and made it a home.

Of course, things go wrong in an old house but my friend in a new condo that cost 3X our house has had more problems than we have had in our 1964 ranch. Many of the kitchen remodels I see on Houzz are really changing perfectly functional kitchens to something more trendy, not reconfigurating the space in a major way.
February 2, 2013 at 9:09PM     
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designideas4me
This is my first house that I have owned. But I always want to change things where ever I live. Before this I only rented or lived with men who owned so it wasnt my house to do major remodels............lucky for the cuz I probably would have torn the house apart like I have done here and yet to put it back together
February 2, 2013 at 9:16PM   
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designideas4me
yvonne...................... Intersting comment.. "Many of the kitchen remodels I see on Houzz are really changing perfectly functional kitchens to something more trendy, not reconfigurating the space in a major way." So if thats the case and the desire to remodel is all about trend and what looks good at the moment than how often would you say people do a major remodel and how long before that trend and remodel are out of date?
February 2, 2013 at 9:26PM     
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yvonnecmartin
In my experience most people remodel a kitchen only when it gets so bad that there is no choice and they feel that they have the money and time and energy to tackle a kitchen remodel. But most people aren't on Houzz; they don't even know about it and they don't feel the need to follow trends.

I'm 76 years old and have remodelled a kitchen once. My current kitchen is the original from 1964 except for a 1993 replacement by the previous owners of the formica counter tops with Corian and new floors. I know four people who remodelled a kitchen, but many more who live with what they have or just replace the counter tops and floors and paint the walls.
February 2, 2013 at 10:14PM     
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Sigrid
@Design4me

The house I bought was renovated. It has a new kitchen (complete with stainless steel appliances) that could probably feature in Houzz. It has new, highly efficient heating. Previous owners have obviously loved the house. So we got the charm of an old house without the updating.

My observation from house hunting is that people are always improving houses. Once the house is over 20-30 years, it's the care that the owners put into it that matters.

We looked at houses in our price range. They included houses built in 1910, the 1960s, the 80s, the 2000s. Aside from the usual location and size, the state of the house mattered a lot in price, (of course the biggest driver was on the ocean or not. Our house would have cost 3X the price if it were on the other side of the street.)
February 2, 2013 at 10:19PM   
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Iyare I
2001... I love new homes. Im sorry, I hate period homes... victorians homes or anything that screams age. It always looks dingy to me no matter the renovations put into it. I guess its a matter of preference.When I was looking to buy in 2011, I didnt want anything older than 5 years but my house was in such great condition and looked so new that I didnt mind when my realtor showed it to me and actually fell in love with it. I live in Texas so to me, anything below 2500 sq feet is small and unacceptable to me. I love 3000 sq feet and up on a nice size lot with lots of room and an airy feel
February 3, 2013 at 3:18AM     
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PRO
Linda
Designideas4me - brownfield infill refers to redevelopment efforts to remove old industrial buildings, remediate any environmental issues and construct new housing. Brownfield could refer to the existing color on a satellite photo, as opposed to greenfield developments which are currently open space.

All brownfield sites have issues - otherwise someone would have already built on that space. The issue(s) might be environmental contamination, location in undesirable area, location next to noisy roads, railroad tracks or airport, or the site might be too small to make a profit or too large for most developers to take on. Large redevelopment plans have lots of interested parties all wanting to be involved which increases costs and slows schedules
February 3, 2013 at 6:49AM     
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jbgb
1913 American Foursquare
I love the lines, the classic simplicity of the house. Like Classic Kate's house, this home design was featured in Sears Roebuck as a buy it and assemble it yourself home. There are ads from that era for home kits costing $3000 but on sale for $2000! I don't believe this home was one bought from Sears as I do have the contracts and original drawings marked by the architect but it certainly could have been as the drawings in the ads were nearly identical.
February 3, 2013 at 12:31PM   
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lhburns
1961 mid-century modern ranch
February 3, 2013 at 12:54PM     
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fortcluck
1911 on a couple of acres in small town. Love the small town life style with the San Francisco style victorian.
February 3, 2013 at 1:09PM   
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designideas4me
Iyare I.... thanks for the honesty ... I can relate... mine is similiar.

But all this has got me thinking and if I could afford a quaint old house in good shape close to san francisco or new york city or LA ... maybe I would consider it. But if it was anywhere that didnt offer me some valuable trade off like that than I would most likely prefer newer. If I had 500,000 or 1,000,000 or more to buy in La Jolla on the water... damn right I would jump at it even if the house was older. Problem is most houses on the pacific coast or near major cities are in the millions. So it wasnt an option. The ones in san diego county or san fran or nyc or dc or other appealing majot cities were all over 500k to several million. So I guess many of you are rich. If thats they type of house you have. Or maybe many bought years ago when prices were low but if you sold today you would get millions. Do most of you with these older homes have them paid off? Are they valued over 500k? I didnt have that option so I chose newer and bigger and outside the main city.
February 3, 2013 at 4:04PM   
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fortcluck
I am an hour out of Sacramento in the foothills. Paid less than 200K. No I am not rich, just very conservative. Trade off is No malls, No Costco or other big box stores close by. But neighborly, friendly folks that will lend a hand when needed and a smile.
February 3, 2013 at 6:28PM     
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hmschoolmom
Ours was custom built in 73. We chose it over new because we twice as much square footage for the same price and more acreage.
We bought simply to enjoy it, fix it up some and sell for more money when the kids move out. There isn't much architectural interest but tons of storage , multiple closets and a laundry chute (escape hatch for my sons). We reno'd the kitchen and opened it up to the family room to add value when we sell. I wouldn't buy new --they all look the same and are too open. We also have better insulation than newer houses where we live. (smart builder)
February 3, 2013 at 7:26PM   
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orangecamera
Older homes usually mean established neighborhoods, more mature trees, and less chance of annoying construction noises ongoing for months.
February 3, 2013 at 7:33PM     
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curacaoblue
I bought a 9 yo house because I wanted to live in a finished neighborhood yet only newer homes appealed to me. I like the trees and the fact that all construction is over. The neighborhood began 20 yrs ago so lots are relatively large But small enough that we can talk to our neighbors who are very friendly. we didnt want a ton of land but didnt want to be on top of our neighbors either. These things are all relative and appeal to different people. I appreciate the beauty of old homes but I don't have what it takes to keep one up. I like a well built energy efficient and I like openness. It's all personal taste.
February 3, 2013 at 8:35PM   
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winterriver
1870s farmhouse style. The house has no more or fewer problems than my friends' houses that were new or nearly new when they moved in, now 10 - 20 years old. We're all replacing windows, renovating baths and kitchens.

The house my grandmother had when I was young was built in 1747. My house is new in comparison.
February 3, 2013 at 9:22PM     
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designideas4me
OMG.............. I have only been in houses that old on historic tours. But in looking at many houses across the country I see some that are gorgeous and old but very expensive and others that are old and small and dont look great. The only think I dont like about some older homes is the lower ceiling. Some of the older houses I would love to live in but again they are very expensive for anything I could ever consider.
February 4, 2013 at 4:59AM   
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flgrandma
The comments of old houses reminds me of young adulthood when I lived in many old houses and envied my friends who had new houses. I thought a new house wouldn't need repairs. Silly me.
February 4, 2013 at 5:03AM     
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hmschoolmom
I lived in two newer houses when we were newly married and neither was constructed very well although they had nice aesthetics like vaulted or extremely high ceilings and skylights, clerestory windows, etc. We learned first that we paid for all the hot air way up there that only an occasional bird that flew into our home enjoyed. We also had to deal with plumbing that didn't last, windows that fogged and cookie cutter kitchens. Hard for me to justify a kitchen reno on a newer home. But we have been customizing our well built older home and get to enjoy all the heat we pay for with our comfy 8 ft ceilings. No more warming myself by standing on the back of my sofa. (no kidding).
February 4, 2013 at 8:51AM     
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Sigrid
@Design4
Lol! When we were moving to England, my husband went first. He did some house hunting and extolled the wonders of this marvelous house from the 18th century. It had been the childhood home of Mary Shelley, who wrote Frankenstein. The house was gorgeous and loaded with history. What a fantastic opportunity. On the next phone call, I asked if that's where we'd be living. Nope, my husband had to duck his head to go through the doorways and bend over when on the stairs.
February 4, 2013 at 8:57AM   
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mmilos
1956 Storybook-style California Ranch. http://www.midcenturyhomestyle.com/styles/storybook-ranch.htm

A bit too much pine wood paneling and pine kitchen cabinets. Love the relatively open floorplan layout...very easy flow for entertaining and ahead of its time in that respect.
February 4, 2013 at 9:01AM   
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bubblyjock
I think you need to expand your options a bit, not just limit the age to recent memory!

House was built in 1854, centre-hall plan farmhouse, and it is still perfect after nearly 200 years. Perfect masonry, perfectly square, perfectly oriented to deal with northern weather (indoors it's bright in the winter, but stays cool in the hot summer).

Bugger to keep clean (the floorboards have shrunk and the dirt lies in the gaps), but that's why there's a door at the back and the front - open them both, instant breeze, and the dust-bunnies are gone before my very eyes!
February 4, 2013 at 9:10AM     
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Ariadni
We recently bought our first home in WY. It is a bi-level, built in 1968. The last residents updated the electrical, plumbing, flooring and built a deck. It's in a desirable neighborhood, with good schools near by and a short driving distance to shopping and restaurants as well. We will likely live in and love our house for a good 4-5 years before we have to move on.
February 4, 2013 at 1:16PM   
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Kris
Our home is on 2 acres, w/3/4 acre yard. I LOVE IT. It is a 1992 manufactured home, but large, on one level (the only way to go) and has a wonderful Mother-In-Law room w/a new bathroom addition we just finished. The new bath used to be a long narrow storage room, but makes a perfect bathroom. 2 car garage, w/storage room that keeps cool year round. Love the layout, and has a wonderfully landscaped yard. All done when we bought it. Will be tweaking things to make it better for us, but love our view of mountains, and no super close neighbors, but those that are there are good ones.
My brother lives in our old family home, built in 1942. Great old 2 story cinderblock w/a full basement. Drawbacks there are that the wiring isn't up to all the new electronics necessary in our world.
February 4, 2013 at 4:06PM   
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PRO
Barnhart Gallery
My original one and a half story cape on an acre and a half was built in the early 1930's, but lacked anything architectural to salvage, so in the late '90's we gutted and grew, and added all of that good stuff in, thanks to Fypon, Cultured Stone and lots of antiquing. Now it looks as though a family might have prospered here for generations, even predating the 1930's, and it's a cape no more. It overlooks a museum and grounds that are beautifully kept and lightly travelled. I actually just hosted my husband's 50th there last weekend, and then once we finished our mead and cheese, we rolled up the short stretch of country road to our house for paninis and further merriment. It's so nice to be winding down on my more recent couple of years of renovations and having a crowd c'mon in again.

We also have the neighbors' 20 alpacas peering over the stone wall. It's great fun until the wind shifts...
February 4, 2013 at 4:59PM     
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designideas4me
I totally see the appeal of privacy and a nice lush mature landscaping. thats one thing I wish I had. When I lived in San Diego in a rented condo that was built in 1963...it had a huge tree in back that I attatched a swing to for my son. But I could not afford to buy a condo or house in SD for 250k . The most I could get there would be a tiny very old small place that is under 1000 sq feet. The prices were 2-3 times as much as where I am now. Even where I am now the houses built in the 1980s were weird. rounded walls and low ceilings with florecent lighting. The only appeal was the location and the greeney. From looking online the more updated older homes are very expensive. Sure if you have 1,000,000 bux than you have many more options. For people with under 300k to spend the options are much less. I considered moving to fla and nc and az before I decided on this location. I chose it for the weather and I love ca. But I was focused on homes that were pretty new so I cant say for sure what my options would have been if I looked at older homes under 300k.
February 4, 2013 at 8:16PM   
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hmschoolmom
Living in middle America has its benefits and lower home prices is one of them. Another benefit for our local area is that we weren't affected as much by the recession since our home prices weren't overly inflated. We were blessed to buy a 3000 sq ft for 130k. It needed paint and flooring. The kitchen was updated back in the early 90's so it was liveable until our recent reno. Our value has gone up by 70K since '05. Still a lot cheaper than same home on the coasts and SD sounds like.
February 5, 2013 at 6:33AM   
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louiseh
My house is in England and the earliest record we have of it dates to 1880, so I think is is slightly older than that. It is full of history. It was once called a cottage owned by a Lady Charlotte Lees but it is a huge rambling country house, and we have now changed the name from cottage. We have worked on it for over 18 years but not changed the integrity of the house and only adding to the footprint with a conservatory. The house had once been divided into 3 separate homes but we have re-united it.
We have total privacy and a beautiful garden, that we have worked hard to cultivate. We paid just over £300k for it and it is now worth over £4 M. We love it, because it is home.
February 5, 2013 at 6:53AM   
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orangecamera
"We love it, because it is home." WELL SAID, lousieh!
February 5, 2013 at 4:35PM     
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timandt
My answer is e.
My entire house is medium oak wood trim and cabinets and floors.... It's too much. Hate it!
February 5, 2013 at 5:09PM   
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lynchl
1959 tri level gold baby :)
February 5, 2013 at 5:22PM   
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PRO
Kaplan Architects, AIA
1929 Storybook style
February 5, 2013 at 5:27PM     
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handymam
My house is a 1970 Cape Cod, built into a hill so we have a 2 car garage underneath. We live in an older home because they feel more like a home to us than new ones would. It is well built, rooms are nicely sized and have lovely windows. I even love the blue tiles in the bathroom. There, I said it! But we did update the sinks and cabinets and new toilets. Another reason we like our house is that where we live, our house is younger than lots others, they are over 100 years old, lol. Not wild about the wall of brick fireplace, but may change it to a stacked stone facing sometime.
February 5, 2013 at 5:51PM   
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LaLennoxa
@bubblyjock - totally agree about the date options in this poll LOL. The results are somewhat skewed since many of us - whether by choice or not, are in homes older than 30 years old!

My house is built in 1886, Victorian. Totally by choice - when I was looking for a home, I knew I wanted a "century home" and ended up with the house of my dreams.

Like many ridiculously happy homeowners, I could go on and on about the many virtues of my home. But maybe I could sum it up by saying it was solidly built, solidly renovated and solidly maintained. I love the details of these older homes, and it's been modernized in such a way that is perfect for me.

What do I dislike based on the year built? The only thing really is that they didn't build basements like they do now with a view to having additional living space - really, they were for coal storage. But I am fortunate in that is dry and can be used for storage and a workshop - but not the "man cave" idea (without extensive renovations).
February 7, 2013 at 12:44AM   
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rinqreation
1954; 2 story concrete rowhouse (the one on the corner) in the Netherlands.
Early prefab, the walls and beams were poored on-site, 20x20ft on a 2900sqft patch. It was built as housing for employees of a nearby factory. The previous owners didn't change the original sofboard ceiling and all the wiring needed to be renewed. But they did take out most of the characteristics.. So we've completely gutted it and are now restoring and updating it all by ourselves with loads of tlc and diy, putting back some of it's fifties cuteness. We do not want to go back 50 years in convenience, so the 3x6ft bathroom (not toilet!) is now a walk-in closet and we sacrificed our 3rd bedroom to build a proper bathroom. We also tore down some walls (no more ensuite and closet-kitchen) so everything looks more spacious and lighter.
Why a old house? Character and history. And the new houses are larger and dutch soil don't come cheap! (it's quite a crowded country) We had a garden on our wishlist and we could afford this house. We thought we could make some profit too, but since the market dropped about 20%, we're restoring it just for ourselves.
What I do like to add is dutch homes are mostly built from bricks/concrete and have to meet up to piles of rules and safety requirements. For example: electrical wiring inside walls has to be insulated hard wire and put inside pvc tubing.
February 7, 2013 at 2:30AM     
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lisamzeigler
The house that I will settle on in a few weeks was built in 1900 and was an old school house, I love the character of the home, it just feels right, I don't love the kitchen cabinets or their choice of wall coverings, but those can be changed. Looking forward to country living and beautiful water views.
February 7, 2013 at 2:55AM   
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0825sam
1870s Victorian.
Love: location, character, moldings, big lot
Dislike: prior owners chopped up the house (we just fixed with new kitchen, baths and upstairs configuration), loud heating system, can be cold in winter
February 7, 2013 at 4:51AM   
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designideas4me
I totally should have expanded the options to have more divisions of homes built in 1970s 1960s 1950s etc. But I didnt think or know so many people had homes of that age. I was just unaware and should have known based on the pictures of many of the homes being upgraded or remodeled.
February 7, 2013 at 10:22AM   
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designideas4me
Hey... 239 votes... wow......... at leastI posted a question that got so many people to comment. I didnt even know that many people were on here..lol. Ok so lets have a party !!
February 7, 2013 at 10:35AM   
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marlin1000
1922
February 7, 2013 at 10:53AM   
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curacaoblue
Most houses are older. Very few are "new" built this decade. Just think about the housing market and construction industry lately. Plus houses are something that will always be reused. It's not something that is thrown away, instead you refurbish. If you sell yours for a new one then some one will buy it because everyone needs to live somewhere. I would have liked to see this poll with more representative figures. You'd see just how many are really on here lol!
February 7, 2013 at 11:04AM   
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patinthehat
1921, Craftsman bungalow (MAYBE a kit-house, there's two VERY similar 2 streets over), but we are selling & moving into a 1960 MidCentury Modern. I absolutely LOVED this home, 10 ft ceilings, 6" wide plank oak floors, plaster/lathe walls, window seats, funky triple paned windows, big FPL and TONS of character! However, the itty-bitty closets & 1 bath were tough.... we remodeled, added a 2nd bath in the style, also a bigger master closet & laundry room. WHAT a difference! Moving to an entirely different style MCM home is a challenge, but i'm loving the new discoveries!
February 12, 2013 at 1:07PM     
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patinthehat
also, decorated in Eclectic style, lots of color & funky-to-the-max. SO much fun!
February 12, 2013 at 1:11PM   
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PRO
Creative Interiors by Kim
1835, center entrance colonial farmhouse in Massachusetts. We were looking for an antique home and the reason we bought this one was because most of the original details were left unchanged...specifically floorboards, fireplaces, doors, windows and yes...cracked plaster and squeaky floors. As a designer, I work in new homes every day and still love the character and ambiance of my old house. It's not for everyone, I love it!
February 12, 2013 at 1:17PM     
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designideas4me
patinthehat... How big are these older houses like yours? any pics? sounds interesting. I want to see the funky part.
February 12, 2013 at 8:50PM   
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MjMitch73
1960.
Love my yard, neighborhood and location in beautiful Ft. Myers Fl. Dislike the size of my Fl ranch style house(1200 sq ft) although I couldn't handle a big house,being a neat freak! I wish for a walk in closet and bigger bathrooms..... Also hate that my house was built with galvanized steel pipes! What a disaster! The only positive about it is that I can FINALLY upgrade my kitchen since I had water everywhere and the contractor had to dig a trench through my kitchen to rip out the old pipes! Just have no more patience waitng for the insurance to come through...
February 12, 2013 at 9:07PM   
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mefor
My house was built around 1790. My beach house was built around 1880-1890, I have a certificate that shows when it was electrified in 1907. My first house was built in 1890. Love, love, love old houses!!!!
May 29, 2013 at 8:24AM     
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shelleybowley
Our family home was built in 1750. It's a barn conversion and sits on a lovely location in berkshire. Downside is its a grade ii listed building - expensive to maintain.
May 29, 2013 at 8:51AM   
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OnePlan
Not sure totally but parts are over 350 years old !!! shes an old cottage set in rural Dorset ! She's like an old Aunty to us ! We love coming home ! And always have guests coming back to stay again and again ! ( we should open it as a B&B !!)
May 29, 2013 at 12:49PM     
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Barnhart Gallery
mforr, you remind me that I didn't mention our summer home. My grandfather built it as a duplex cottage on Horseneck Beach in southeastern Massachusetts in 1947. Carol, the hurricane of '54, wiped out most of the neighborhood, and the state took our beautiful beach by eminent domain, leaving those few of us whose homes were salvageable to truck up and move over to East Horseneck Beach, still beautiful, but with a somewhat rocky rather than sandy edge. A small village grew from those first cottages, and being the "first on the block" so to speak, we got the ideal lot abutting a 350 acre oceanfront horse farm overlooking both the sea and the "Sea Biscuits." We no longer see many of the horses though, as a hundred or two of those waterfront acres are now designated Audubon land.
May 29, 2013 at 1:03PM     
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feeny
One of the biggest regrets of my life was not being able to buy a perfectly preserved Sears Home from about 1910, Craftsman style, when it went on the market near where we used to live. It had some of the most beautiful woodwork, and was one of the most perfect little gems of a house I've ever seen.
May 29, 2013 at 2:14PM   
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rona7770
1931 kitchen and third bedroom tiny
May 29, 2013 at 2:16PM   
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nasmijati
@designs4me. Re: Sears home.
From 1908–1940, Sears, Roebuck and Co. sold about 70,000 - 75,000 homes through their mail-order Modern Homes program. Over that time Sears designed 447 different housing styles, from the elaborate multistory Ivanhoe, with its elegant French doors and art glass windows, to the simpler Goldenrod, which served as a quaint, three-room and no-bath cottage for summer vacationers. (An outhouse could be purchased separately for Goldenrod and similar cottage dwellers.) Customers could choose a house to suit their individual tastes and budgets.
All the materials for the home from the newly available asphalt tile roofing and drywall, pre-cut studs and joists, to bathroom tiles and nails were delivered by railroad to the consumer. You could build it yourself, or hire someone to build it for you.
May 29, 2013 at 2:21PM     
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bubblyjock
@ feeny and eztia - I had no idea that Sears sold whole houses! I googled "Sears Ivanhoe" and "Sears Goldenrod" - lovely homes indeed.
May 29, 2013 at 3:11PM     
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Classic Kate
I own a 1927 Sears Hamilton. Bought from the builders daughter. Extremely small, but it came with the original wallpaper. Any info on a thread here specifically about Sears home, pls advise! :)
June 9, 2013 at 5:35PM     
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shakerjaebs
My house was built in 1925. My profile pic is a drawing of it. We've only lived here 6 months. We specifically looked for a house that was built in the 1920s. We love the craftsmanship and unique details. This house has original terra cotta tiles, lots of natural, original woodwork, heavy oak doors and awesome, original casement windows.
June 9, 2013 at 7:36PM   
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tt67
Mine built in 1911. Love it BUT bathrooms are small. Other character makes up for that shortcoming, though.
June 9, 2013 at 8:14PM   
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bluenan
We custom built our house in 1994 on 24 acres with an historical perspective in mind. We used wood windows, wide pine floors, four masonry wood-burning fireplaces, and mouldings, the things that we feel give an older home its charm. There was an old barn and stable, complete with attached silo that had been converted into a tack room, an old milking shed that is now a workshop and garden shed, privacy and a view to die for! It's been a lot of work, but I'm not a city type of gal.
My ancestral home was an 1820 log cabin my three times great-grandfather bought and added on to in 1834, which just passed out of the family to a wonderful friend who is preserving the legacy of the home. I just got back from a visit and returned some treasures that I felt belonged "back home". So, I am fortunate in being able to have ties to a very old home, but enjoy spacious closets and plenty of bathrooms in my newer "old" home.
June 9, 2013 at 8:27PM     
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Sarah
I moved into a 1907 foursquare farmhouse on a half acre lot about 5 years ago. Balloon construction, every wall is supporting. It's a very simple layout; entry, living, dining, kitchen on the first floor - 3 bedrooms and a decent size bath on the second. The attic is a 12 by 12 pitch but the previous owners removed the stairs to it when they renovated the bath (removed the old clawfoot tub- boo) so all we have is a hole above our stairs to access a HUGE attic - wasted space. I wasn't a fan of their renovation so we're redo-ing with a garden tub, used a simple old china cabinet with natural baskets for storage and I bought 2 white vessel sinks to place on a simple dresser that mimics the cabinets lines - more spa-like. We've been trying for awhile to figure out how to put stairs back in to access. We'll lose a bedroom but the space in the attic is worth it. The basement is probably my least favorite thing. It's a crumbly wet mess. Previous owners said they put french drains in but I think it needs a LOT more help. Every project we get into we find something else the previous owners messed up in their slap-it-together to sell. One time there was even exposed wiring in the cabinet bulk-head, scary. Thankfully my husband and his whole family are in construction, electrical.... They have every base covered! It is home and now especially since we have fixed many of the previous errors. BUT I told my husband any and every house I go into, there will always be things I want to change. If I ever get a chance between brand new and century home, I would pick the century home every time.
I grew up in a Ryan Homes split-level neighborhood that popped up in the 70's. Not a fan of them. I would take my 1907 house any day over them!
June 22, 2013 at 10:04PM     
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Sarah
I would LOVE a craftsman bungalow one day! Very smart houses with beautiful details!
June 22, 2013 at 10:05PM     
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zerolotline
Petite 1992 2 story brick, 3 br, 2 1/2 bath, 1946 sf living area, 2 car garage, 60x110 ft zero clearance lot. Many trees, perninal beds, 2 decks, walkways 2400 gal nature pond, corner lot.
June 23, 2013 at 3:44AM   
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lepbarnes
Love my cape style house built in 1964....established neighborhood, walking distance to schools and parks and everything else only a five minute drive. Super easy commute since it's in an inner suburb. Wish the closets were a little bigger...and we've added additional insulation and replaced the roof since we moved in. We HATE open floor plans so the traditional floorplans with a separate family room, separate living room, etc. really work for us. Many wouldn't like that, but it's why we're attracted to older homes and avoided new construction. For ex, good luck finding an eat in kitchen these days and no, a bar doesn't count. I'm not five--I don't think eating every meal on a stool with my feet dangling is fun.
June 23, 2013 at 8:07PM     
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soberg
I was born in a house built around 1900 (Minneapolis). Then moved to a house from 1931 in San Diego. My first house I owned was from 1926 in suburban Boston, then I bought a house in the San Francisco area, vintage 1961. Moving on up. As I reflect now, to me it would seem strange to buy a brand new, just built, house...... The older houses have the charming neighborhoods, close to employment and services. Most new houses seem to be out in the boonies in car-only areas.

My current house, a ranch, was well built and medium high-end in its day (1961). The 52 year old roofline (over trusses) is ramrod straight, studs and joists are sound on their 4 ft (1.2 m ) deep poured concrete footings, and the crawlspace is dry as a bone. I believe that this house can easily be standing 200 years from now with just ordinary maintenance. These "old" neighborhoods with their 8000 sf (800 m2) lots will then be the height of nostalgic charm.
June 23, 2013 at 8:43PM   
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thewhovian2000
Per civil war
October 1, 2013 at 8:24PM   
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Jolene
This current house was built in 1988, but boy do I miss the lath and plaster house built in 1962 that we sold. We moved to a smaller newer town. We only became incorporated city in 1988, although a few home were built in 78 before.
October 8, 2013 at 2:26PM   
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Regina Joppert
We just bought a house built in 1936. I love the height of the ceilings, but I have very small bathrooms, a small kitchen and tiny closets.
Still, wouldn't swap it for a mansion. I fell in love with it the minute I set foot inside.
October 10, 2013 at 5:08PM   
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Emily Hurley
I'm in a 1926 house. I love that it has the charm and detail of a house built in that era, but I do wish it had the closet space of a house built in this century. :)
October 10, 2013 at 5:12PM   
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MKF
Our house was built in 1895.
October 10, 2013 at 6:26PM   
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Kari D
1914- It needs love which is why we've been refinishing floors and replacing windows. Aside from the kitchen the rooms are spacious and all the bedrooms have their own bathrooms. Heck, even the foyer is bigger than my dorm room was in college. But the best part is the 9 acres and the 6 car garage the house came with. An old house might be high maintenance, but this old house is totally worth the extra TLC.
October 10, 2013 at 6:45PM     
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