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Old 04-03-2014, 03:08 PM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eschaton View Post
I just thought I'd link to some older intact houses on the market in Pittsburgh and show that these finishes were not just for the wealthy.

Modest-sized 1920s foursquare with stained glass and built ins.
Bungalow with stained glass from 1920s
Great surviving craftsmenship.
Modest house clad in real stone. I don't believe it's as old as 1910 judging from the features though.

At least locally, more vernacular houses with retained internal features don't really come to the fore until the Craftsmen movement started. Part of this was due to the materials being used actually increasing in quality, but part of also seems to be they just were better treated over time than the Victorians, which (except for the biggest houses) retain little original due to people ripping out most of their features in the mid 20th century.

Externally though, Victorians can still be plenty ornate. This street in Pittsburgh shows what Pittsburgh frame rowhouses looked like before remuddling (removing wood siding, wood trim, and even replacing windows) became common. You can see they were anything but plain, despite being of modest size.
Those houses are not "tract" nor are they particularly "modest". They're 1300-1600 sq. ft.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ss20ts View Post
The Victorian era of home building was wrapping up at that time and the foursquare was considered by some to be a Victorian.

And seriously the foursquare was designed to be boring and bland because there were people tired of the froofoo of the Victorian era. Highly decorated foursquares are rare. Many were jazzed up over the years as people came into money and decorating styles changed.
I don't think "boring and bland" are the words that would make anyone want to buy a home. Perhaps "understated", "unadorned", "muted", "restrained" or something of the like. I know a lot of people don't like the ornateness of the Victorians.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
Hopefully not. I hope energy conservation would mean we wouldn't need more energy.
Maybe the technology will improve, so with different wiring we can use less energy, at least per applicance/object (phones, etc).
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Old 04-03-2014, 03:19 PM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

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Location: Long Island / NYC
45,992 posts, read 42,100,107 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
Those houses are not "tract" nor are they particularly "modest". They're 1300-1600 sq. ft.
The last view of rowhouses are tract in the sense shape is the same. They probably weren't low end when built, but I suspect they weren't high end or considered that fancy. And more ornate than homes today.

My parent's first house (50s or early 60s) was maybe 1300 sq ft., maybe somewhat more. They still weren't considered fancy, and likely a few things are what would be considered deficient. But the home was worth enough that owners slowly improved. The current owner had vinyl siding.
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Old 04-03-2014, 03:20 PM
 
Location: Somewhere in America
12,304 posts, read 10,804,933 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
I don't think "boring and bland" are the words that would make anyone want to buy a home. Perhaps "understated", "unadorned", "muted", "restrained" or something of the like. I know a lot of people don't like the ornateness of the Victorians.
You took what I said out of context. The foursquare is VERY plain. It came about at the end of the Victorian era when everything was over the top.

You can't go by what people of today think of Victorians. They weren't built for the people of today. The Victorian era is a period of history and fashion was huge. There was a new found wealth.

I know people who love and loathe Victorians. So the ones who loathe them, don't buy them. The ones who love them, do try to buy them.
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Old 04-03-2014, 03:28 PM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

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Location: Long Island / NYC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
The southern states are all pretty high in 1940-1950, but some northern/western states had pretty high rates as well (>30% in 1940, >25% in 1950), e.g. Alaska (1950 only), Colorado, Delaware, Hawaii (1950 only), Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada (1940 only), New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon (1940 only), Pennsylvania, Rhode Island (1950 only), South Dakota, Utah (1940 only), Vermont, Washington (1940 only), West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming.
The Rhode Island numbers make no sense, the % goes up from 1940 to 1950 by a lot, housing with incomplete plumbing facilities had a big increase but with no change in housing with complete plumbing facilities. The link I provided was actually not reflecting having an indoor toilet but complete plumbing facilities — including running hot water. "Cold water flats" were not an uncommon housing type in the early 20th century (and survived into the 40s and 50s as the number showed). I'd guess they were relatively rare in new housing by then, though that's a guess.

Here's an example of them in Queens, NYC:

RIDGEWOOD, Queens | | Forgotten New YorkForgotten New York

[scroll down to Matthew Flats. The photo of the apartment building just above is a cold-water flat as the row houses below]

Interestingly, those cold water flats were actually considered good urban housing when built (1915).

Gustave Matthews mass-produced these multi-unit houses for about $8,000 and sold them for $11,000. They did not have central heating or hot water systems. The only heat came from coal in the stove and a kerosene heater in the living room. Despite this, the U.S. Government gave special recognition to Matthews’ concept in 1915 when an exhibit was opened at the Panama-Pacific Exposition in San Francisco. It showed the world how efficiently these type of apartments met housing needs for a surging population.

NYC mandated they be retrofitted with hot water and central heat in 1959. That might explain the rather uneven heating systems I've noticed in the city. I know Chicago and some smaller northeastern cities also had these.
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Old 04-03-2014, 03:32 PM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
87,071 posts, read 102,800,958 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
The last view of rowhouses are tract in the sense shape is the same. They probably weren't low end when built, but I suspect they weren't high end or considered that fancy. And more ornate than homes today.

My parent's first house (50s or early 60s) was maybe 1300 sq ft., maybe somewhat more. They still weren't considered fancy, and likely a few things are what would be considered deficient. But the home was worth enough that owners slowly improved. The current owner had vinyl siding.
I see four single family homes in the links that eschaton posted. I don't see any row houses. I know how much some of the stuff in those homes costs, from having done work on our house. Granite countertops, butcherblock countertops, huge kitchen appliances, etc. These are not modest houses. Those stained glass windows could have been put in any time. They all look like they've had work done on them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ss20ts View Post
You took what I said out of context. The foursquare is VERY plain. It came about at the end of the Victorian era when everything was over the top.

You can't go by what people of today think of Victorians. They weren't built for the people of today. The Victorian era is a period of history and fashion was huge. There was a new found wealth.

I know people who love and loathe Victorians. So the ones who loathe them, don't buy them. The ones who love them, do try to buy them.
My objection is to the words "bland" and "boring". "Boring" in particular is not a word you are going to use to try to sell a house, either to someone building it, or someone buying it later.
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Old 04-03-2014, 03:35 PM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

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Location: Long Island / NYC
45,992 posts, read 42,100,107 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
I see four single family homes in the links that eschaton posted. I don't see any row houses. I know how much some of the stuff in those homes costs, from having done work on our house. Granite countertops, butcherblock countertops, huge kitchen appliances, etc. These are not modest houses. Those stained glass windows could have been put in any time. They all look like they've had work done on them.
The last link he posted is a streetview of a row house street. Technically they're single family, single family attached.
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Old 04-03-2014, 03:38 PM
 
Location: Somewhere in America
12,304 posts, read 10,804,933 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
My objection is to the words "bland" and "boring". "Boring" in particular is not a word you are going to use to try to sell a house, either to someone building it, or someone buying it later.
They're NOT words for selling a house!! No one EVER claimed they were words for selling a house except you. They are words used to DESCRIBE a style of architecture.
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Old 04-03-2014, 03:39 PM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
87,071 posts, read 102,800,958 times
Reputation: 33132
Quote:
Originally Posted by ss20ts View Post
They're NOT words for selling a house!! No one EVER claimed they were words for selling a house except you. They are words used to DESCRIBE a style of architecture.
I don't think so! A style of architecture would be "plain" or "unadorned". Bland and boring both have negative connotations.

bland
bland/
adjective
adjective: bland; comparative adjective: blander; superlative adjective: blandest
https://www.google.com/search?q=blan...x-a&channel=sb
1.
lacking strong features or characteristics and therefore uninteresting.
"rebelling against the bland uniformity"
synonyms: uninteresting, dull, boring, tedious, monotonous, monochrome, dry, drab, dreary, wearisome; More


https://www.google.com/search?q=blan...en-US:official
bor·ing
ˈbôriNG/
adjective
adjective: boring

1.
not interesting; tedious.
"I've got a boring job in an office"
synonyms: tedious, dull, monotonous, repetitive, unrelieved, unvaried, unimaginative, uneventful; More
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Old 04-03-2014, 03:42 PM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

Over $104,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum and additional contests are planned
 
Location: Long Island / NYC
45,992 posts, read 42,100,107 times
Reputation: 14811
They're words to describe a style of architecture you don't like.
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Old 04-03-2014, 03:45 PM
 
Location: Somewhere in America
12,304 posts, read 10,804,933 times
Reputation: 20547
Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
I don't think so! A style of architecture would be "plain" or "unadorned". Bland and boring both have negative connotations.

bland
bland/
adjective
adjective: bland; comparative adjective: blander; superlative adjective: blandest
https://www.google.com/search?q=blan...x-a&channel=sb
1.
lacking strong features or characteristics and therefore uninteresting.
"rebelling against the bland uniformity"
synonyms: uninteresting, dull, boring, tedious, monotonous, monochrome, dry, drab, dreary, wearisome; More

https://www.google.com/search?q=blan...en-US:official
1.
not interesting; tedious.
"I've got a boring job in an office"
synonyms: tedious, dull, monotonous, repetitive, unrelieved, unvaried, unimaginative, uneventful; More
They are words used to DESCRIBE something. What don't you understand?? Who said everything has to be positive? Maybe that's the bubble YOU live in, but the rest of the world does not.
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