Laguna Canyon Fairytale – Historic Home of the Week 9/5/2013

Laguna Canyon Fairytale

September 5th, 2013

We’re doing something a little different this week. This home has been very extensively renovated, and most of the time, we tend to gravitate towards the properties that preserve as much of the original fabric as possible. However, the reality is that doing so isn’t always possible. While we always think of beautiful tree-lined streets and older, established neighborhoods — things change. In no city is that more true than Laguna Beach and especially Laguna Canyon.

Many of these homes were built as part-time, hastily-constructed, vacation spaces and many were built in ways that predate any codes or municipal oversight. This is in great contrast to Old Towne Orange, for example, where the city was involved in the home building process early in the 20th century. And that brings us to the home here, located within Laguna Canyon — once a no man’s land and now an affordable gateway to one of Orange County’s priciest cities and collections of historic property.

What this home lacked in modern construction, it makes up for in charm. And with a complete “down to the studs” renovation you no longer have to make compromises on modern livability. But I think what I like the most is the things they did keep are super cool. The cathedral window in the master bedroom sitting area is my 2nd favorite item. My first favorite? The stained glass window with the coat of arms in one of the secondary bedrooms. Don’t let the small lot size scare you, either. This home has the outdoor space where it counts: concentrated in a long outdoor patio that runs along side the house and is easily accessible from the main living spaces.

A home like this isn’t for everybody — in fact, it’s a bad idea for most people. But it’s one of the those charmingly unique places that certainly warrants the designation: one-of-a-kind. Add in that it’s a turn-key proposition and located with a Laguna Beach address and the asking price doesn’t seem so far-fetched.

This home is listed by Julie Kuntz with Prudential California Realty, but we’d love to represent your interests as a buyer. If you’d like to schedule a private showing of this property, don’t hesitate to contact us


Prime Anaheim Colony

Sometimes you run into a home that really has a little bit of everything .Right location in Anaheim Colony. Right price. Right size. Two baths. Great paint scheme. A home like this is hard to fault and at below $500k, we can actually call it an affordable home. It’s even more affordable that the price would suggest due to the Mills Act contract on the property, which puts the property taxes at about $2100/yr. Normally, a property like this would have taxes that were approximately $5600/yr — that’s a savings of $200/mo.

There’s always a careful balance between preservation and updating for a more modern lifestyle. In the 1990s owners added a master suite. The addition is well-done and integrates well on the back side of the house. For many families, the #1 wish list item we hear about is having a 2nd bath and this home does. The French doors leading outside the master bedroom have the same mullion pattern as the original windows. That, along with a porch on the back, really ties everything together.

Inside, the original hardwood floors have be refinished and while this home is a bit “simpler” in detailing that many, it has a very clean, but still charming vibe. The kitchen isn’t my favorite, but I’ve certainly seen much much much worse. The glass display-cabinet upper cabinets (including some that dip down to the counter) really up the vintage ante. I think with some better colors, accessories, and maybe lighting the kitchen could go from “okay” to pretty cool.

Similar homes in Old Towne Orange are over $100,000 more expensive. This is a good opportunity for someone who wants a great home at a very reasonable price and doesn’t want to give up some modern conveniences.

This home is listed by Barbara Gonzalez with Re/Max Metro R.E., but we’d love to represent your interests as a buyer. If you’d like to schedule a private showing of this property, don’t hesitate to contact us