If you are a homeowner thinking of selling, or a potential buyer thinking of buying in Northeast Los Angeles, you already know that older homes are in demand and are earning top dollar.
If there’s one enduring feature of Craftsman homes, it’s the front door. They are solid, usually of finished (unpainted) wood, with the upper third in glass panels separated from the lower third by a small “dentil” shelf. The door, commonly found in Craftsman homes in Pasadena, Altadena, Eagle Rock, and other Northeast Los Angeles neighborhoods, was a prominent part of the facade.
To make a good point: rehabilitators, don’t mess with this.
Entrance doors in old houses anywhere and of any kind are very important. The statement that Frank Lloyd Wright made with its smaller, off-center doors was to create a sense of privacy for the family indoors and, as some argue, was consistent with the prairie style philosophy of being part of the landscape, not master it. . Who deserves personal greatness when the home and its surroundings are so impressive?
The doors of Victorian, Craftsman, Tudor Revival and Mission Revival homes, also features of real estate in NELA neighborhoods like Mt. Washington, Montecito Heights and Lincoln Heights, did not prevent providing spectacular entrances. In fact, they celebrated them.
That is why the preservation of entrance doors, their appearance and their location are very important in the preservation of old houses. The entrances are an integral part of the overall scheme, both aesthetically and functionally.
It should be noted that mid-century modern houses, also abundant in NELA, have their own vernacular door, as the architects say. It’s a bit difficult to pin down what that is, given the wide range of MCMs’ looks, aside from saying they tend to be very understated, clean, and minimal; however, colors often appear (eg, magenta, chartreuse, orange, cerulean blue). To borrow from an article on HGTV.com, MCM’s front door has at least one rule:
“If you really want to see the curb appeal [of your MCM home] take a nosedive, replace the front door with something ornate. “
Other styles of houses have their “rules” at the front door, so to speak:
Victorian – Decorative glass on or near the front door (crossbars, sides) are part of the look, as are the colors within the overall facade paint scheme.
Mission Revival / Mediterranean – By all means, keep the original or have it reproduced. But with this style, landscaping and accessories are important too. The path to the front door can be made of decomposed granite (DG) shaped like gravel, or made with terracotta pavers or Spanish tiles. Plants should be drought resistant, as befits Southern California and Mediterranean roots of the style.
Craftsman: The wood stain in a Craftsman driveway can be beautiful, but painted doors can help the overall color scheme. A Portland, Oregon, real estate agent told HGTV: “You can bring out architectural details, like columns, by minimizing the body color of the house … paint details on doors, columns, and ceilings. The plain white porches really brought out the unique features of the home. “
Realtor Tracy King knows this from a clever door and general curb appeal, having sold homes in NELA for a quarter of a century. Contact their office (323-243-1234) to learn how you can increase your home’s curb appeal and how to achieve an optimal selling price as quickly as possible.