Project Description

A small entry addition and whole house remodel help turn this Phinney Ridge rental property into the owner’s new home


A sign of a good design idea is when it solves three or more problems. For this house, that idea was to move the front entry from the front corner of the home to the generously sized side yard. The four problems this 73 square foot addition solved were 1) it made the living room more ‘livable’ by squaring off the corner (providing a place for the TV) and allowing for better furniture placement 2) it replaced the diagonal circulation path through the living room with a more logical path in-between the kitchen and living areas 3) it created a separate entry space with a generously sized coat closet (which was missing in the previous house) and 4) it created a way to access a (future) new patio area in the front of the home.

Unfortunately, these were not the only problems this home suffered from. There was no dining space, bathrooms were tiny and poorly arranged, the upstairs was accessed by a two-foot wide and terribly steep stairway that led up to a dark warren of small rooms, and all the systems needed complete updating. So for this tired old bungalow, that meant gutting it inside and out and starting over, fixing problems, and adding some style to breathe new life into this old home.

Project Info & Tips

  • While our clients didn’t come to us asking for a side entry, after we started design work, it became obvious to everyone it needed to happen
  • When you have low ceilings upstairs, it often makes sense to paint the walls and ceilings all the same color. This helps visually expand the space (because your eye does not stop at the color change)
  • In a smaller homes, consider an eat-in kitchen. This kitchen was designed to have the dining table in the center of the kitchen, with cabinets and countertops surrounding the table on three sides
  • We designed part of the kitchen cabinets to look like a built-in hutch
  • Stair landings can be a great place to tuck in extra storage. We used some extra space to accommodate some built-in bookshelves
  • Roof eaves often contain a lot of space. In this house we used stock kitchen cabinets to make ‘dressers’ built into the eaves for extra clothes storage
  • To learn more, see our article on Whole House Remodels
  • This project was featured in
  • Level of Design Services: Full Services
  • How do I Estimate Construction Cost and Design Fees?