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Design Dilemma
Design Dilemma

Early 1900s Farmhouse Renovation Advice Requested

jessbvgJanuary 12, 2013
I am looking for advice for renovating a 1900 (1905, I believe) Mississippi farmhouse. The original part of the house is to the right and there is 2 story addition on left from early 1980s. My tentative idea is to have a porch on left addition with same roofline as porch on original house in hopes this will pull together....? Advice on windows? (Pics 1-3)

Pic 3 is of original house, 2nd porch with original formal entry. I've considered wrapping porch floor around to join the two.

I'd like advice on how to stay true to the time period on exterior (the porches have almost Victorian look with posts).
Also hoping for some ideas on how to open up interior for more open feeling as all rooms are 12x12 or 12x15 with 10' ceilings, small hallways and bathrooms.

The home will be essentially for 2 families - mother in law wing upstairs using door shown on addition and a 2 story deck built at end of addition (not visible from front- see pic 4) and use original house for family of 3. I'm trying to keep 2 entrances for privacy (so my 3 year old doesn't drive my Mom crazy with noise!).

Recommendations also requested for websites, blogs and photo sources (lighting, floors, everything!).
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Ironwood Builders
Windows for older homes such as yours come best from custom or semi-custom manufacturers such as Marvin Windows. Their ability to work within the confines of the existing framing is crucial. One major design recommendation is stretching the window size down to allow more light into the house. This concept keeps framing, and interior/exterior trim to a minimum of re-work.
1 Like    Bookmark   January 12, 2013 at 9:26AM
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I like your idea of having a matching porch on the left side, but in reality it will be either below the upstairs windows, or would you extend the roof line over? If MIL quarters is upstairs ... will this present mobility issues later on? Can't imagine what is in the "inside" but on the peaked roof sections - you might want a window with more "face" to it. And yes ... Ironwood builders is right, Marvin windows are wonderful on older homes needing replacement.
1 Like    Bookmark   January 12, 2013 at 9:44AM
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Thanks for advice on windows - I will definitely look into them.
Mobility is a concern but Mom is adamant about being upstairs. The 1st floor of addition has a game/bonus room so I can flip them if she needs to be downstairs.

The porch won't be at same level - will have to be lower as house is built on hill... Hoping the same style will tie together. If this is not going to look good, what are other options/ideas?
    Bookmark   January 12, 2013 at 10:02AM
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Ironwood Builders
Reflecting on the wrap around porch...there is a roof line issue. The shed roof of the existing porch could be matched on the newer section, but there need to be a transitional area to link the two. The protruding gable end of the center section of the house might be best if a gabled porch eases that transition. There might still be issues linking the shed roof areas to the gable end porch, but living in the south, think of a screened porch allowing the indoor/outdoor feeling to reign. Large double doors from interior to porch bring the spring in. Covering the front windows with porch roof may also reduce the light gained by adding more glass. Think about skylights above the windows to increase natural light...depending on the relationship to the sun. That is, if the front of the house is north facing anyway, natural light will be the cooler northern light anyway. South facing? Maybe the reduction in heat gain would be beneficial.

About Mom...stairs are good for the health. More exercise and a happier home. the transition to the lower area could happen when and if she is ready.
1 Like    Bookmark   January 12, 2013 at 12:12PM
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