Remodeling Ranch Home Questions

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by jamie_here, Sep 2, 2004.

  1. jamie_here

    jamie_here Active Member

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    This is my first post to this website, forgive me if I do something wrong :) We are planning on adding on to our Ranch style home (garage is not attached) and I am looking for ideas online for adding at least a master bedroom/bath upstairs and maybe a dining room from the kitchen. My problem is, I can't find anything useful online to give me ideas on what looks best for adding onto a Ranch. I don't want the outside of the house to look uneven or unprofessionally done. My father is a construction worker and he is trying to find some information for us also. We don't want a high dollar house when we are done-not in the budget. Most websites show really expensive houses with , like 6 bedrooms and an attached garage. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. Mudwoman

    Mudwoman Well-Known Member

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    You may have to hire an architect to help you. Not sure your budget, but additions like this can be expensive.
     

  3. jassytoo

    jassytoo Well-Known Member Supporter

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    We added onto our ranch home but we put an addition on the end. It now looks T shaped. We added 2 bedrooms and a bath and rearranged the other part. Its still only 3 beds and 2 baths like before just bigger rooms now. It loks fine.
     
  4. uncle Will in In.

    uncle Will in In. Well-Known Member Supporter

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    The important thing to make an add on not look like an add on is keeping the roof peak matching the old part. Not nessesarily the same height but running over the present roof to form a peak that looks like it was all put up at the same time.
     
  5. VAkat

    VAkat Member

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    Have you considered changing your existing floor plan? We gutted our 1950's L-shaped ranch & reworked it. We added windows, outlets (!!) skylights, put in columns, french doors ect. Haven't finished the kitchen yet but I think we are going to raise the ceiling...it will be eat in now.
    I saw a nice small ranch second story in last months issue of Home & Garden if you have a library near you. They didn't do the entire roof, just a section of it, the rest was left for storage. It looked pretty nice.
    KAT
     
  6. jamie_here

    jamie_here Active Member

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    Thanks for the tips, now for a visit to the Library for that magazine and then maybe sit down and think about rearranging rooms.
     
  7. VAkat

    VAkat Member

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    Jamie, I forgot to say, that we were orginally going to stay in this house a few years longer then we are now and put in a master/family/computer room upstairs. Roof was going to raised up a few feet, dormers in the front & a longer extension wall in the back. Doing alot of the work ourselves the cost was still 40,000 for a 24 x 40. Not to say you can't do it cheaper of course!! The average cost in 2002 for a second story according the Remodels Association was 69,000 plus for a smaller area, so that would have been reasonable. Especially if you factor in HVAC & new septic lines if needed. This was an average cost from several builders in the area. They worked off our sketches & drew up their own working plans for our review. We also have a family plumber so that wasn't included.
    One thing to mention I guess is that if you have this big beautiful upstairs but still a 50's design plan down, it's probably not going to work either (for future resale especially & who wants to be downstarirs then? :) )...not that I know what your house looks like, it could be a mansion compared to what this house was when we bought it (AKA The Cave, 1400 sq ft).
    I did miss a few things though. Transoms above the bedroom doors. Small but would have been nice & a 2 sided propane fireplace between the family & dinning room. I also would have change the position of the front door & made it bigger with side lights. Oh well, new siding goes up in about 2 weeks which will hide all the cuts made by installing new & bigger windows.
    House, while still small, has alot better flow, bright & so updated.
    In the words of our siding guy "To be honest, by looking at the outside of your house..I thought, EKK okay another vintage siding job no problem. But then I came in & it was POW!! Yeah, I know you can afford to pay more from what you have done to the place. It was so totally unexpected.".
    These are just my thoughts & I leave them with you.
    :)
    KAT
     
  8. BamaSuzy

    BamaSuzy Well-Known Member

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    whatever you do in cost-cutting, MAKE CERTAIN that you get a professional to do the wiring. You don't want to cut corners in that area or you may face disaster later.
     
  9. Ken Scharabok

    Ken Scharabok In Remembrance

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    I remember seeing one house where they were raising the roof - literally. They were in the process jacking up the entire roof one story as one unit Was told they would then put the support outer and inner walls under it and put in what will be the floor of the second floor. I suspect the outside walls could be built in advance on the ground so they just needed to be lifted into place once the roof was raised enough.

    Ken Scharabok
     
  10. Nette

    Nette Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I know your frustration at not being able to find good ideas on the internet. I also live in a ranch-style home, and it seems like it would be a simple matter to find remodeling ideas for such a basic style. Not. I sort of bagged the remodeling plans for now, but I had decided that if I was going to pursue it, that I would contact a friend of mine that has some design experience. He's not an architect, but his Dad is a builder and he himself just has a knack for that sort of thing. Try to think of someone you know that is talented in that line of work and seek their assistance.
     
  11. Ken Scharabok

    Ken Scharabok In Remembrance

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    What you are thinking about doesn't sound either horribly difficult or expensive. Approach some home remodelers and contractors in your area with your ideas. Likely they could give you a back-of-the-envelope, ball park estimate on what you are thinking about.

    You do though need to have somewhat specific plans in mind, such as: size of master bedroom, size and fixtures in master bath, size and grade of windows, if putting in an inside stairs if feasible without major changes on the first floor and size of add-on for a separate dining room. Big variable may be flooring. For example, do you just want carpet over plywood or oak wood floors.

    On how much to spend, it may depend on your neighborhood. If your's is one of the last in your neighborhood to be remodeled/modernized than likely you can spend more. If your's is already the nicest house in the neighborhood then you may want to keep cost as low as possible. Also, is the character of your area changing? If the housing market looks to be flat or decreasing, then you might want to live with what you already have.

    Also, don't excluded selling what you have and buying what you want.

    Don't overlook swapping houses. For example, you might find an empty nester interested in downsizing and what you have suits their needs and what they have suits yours.

    Ken Scharabok
     
  12. barbarake

    barbarake Well-Known Member

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    My current house was originally a 1,200 sq.ft. ranch. It's now 2,500 sq.ft. w/ 5 bedrooms. I added two additions. So I know what you're going through.

    When you say 'add a master bedroom/bathroom upstairs' - do you already have the room there?? Or are you talking about raising the roof?? Do you have rafters or trusses?? All this makes a big difference. Does this new area *have* to be upstairs??

    On your current house - is it a plain gable roof or is it hipped?? Are there any dormers at all?? Do you know the pitch (at least roughly)?? Does the gable run front-to-back or side-to-side?? Where is your kitchen/proposed dining room. Could you use a shed roof for the dining room?? Are you planning on doing this yourself or hiring it out?? Is cost a major factor?? (I know cost is always important but do you need to do this as absolutely cheaply as possible??)

    I can tell you what I did but I have absolutely no idea if it would work on your house. Can you give us further details?? I assume your roof is asphalt shingles and you have vinyl siding - is this correct?? Has the siding faded at all?? Are the current roof and/or shingles in good repair?? How about the vent pipes for your plumbing - do you know where they go through the attic?? Do you have a chimney?
     
  13. nostalgia

    nostalgia Well-Known Member

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  14. jamie_here

    jamie_here Active Member

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    Wow, what a lot of questions. Most of them....I don't know, my husband would. We do have a downstairs fireplace so there is a chimney. We have shingles on the roof that will have to be replaced within 3-5 years either way. We have wood siding (very faded green and starting to rot away). We currently have one floor of living space with a remodeled room downstairs. Because of codes, I don't think we can add more that one room downstairs (too close to other property). No idea on gableroof/hipped. No dormers. Unknown pitch. Kitchen is at back of house with a small dining room. A lot of work will be done ourselves, my husband owns an Equipment Rental store and my dad is a construction worker. Cost is a factor, but to keep the cost in check up front we will probably do the additions, but leave the rooms bare until later (flooring, lighting, bathroom fixtures, drywall) and work on them as we have money. Sorry I couldn't answer all of your questions.
    Jamie

     
  15. jamie_here

    jamie_here Active Member

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    You gave me a couple of good things to know ahead of time. The bath/bedroom will be the same size as the small dining room/living room on the first floor. But I didn't think about the size and type of windows. We have a stairway to the remodeled basement room so there is room to do the stairway up at the same place. A lot of the work will only be done to get "under roof" and we will do the inside work as we get money to do each job. Our neighborhood is kind of "little of this, little of that" depends on which house you are looking at, plus we live outside of town so the houses aren't too close together.
    Thanks for the response.
    Jamie
     
  16. Barb

    Barb Well-Known Member

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    Jamie, there are computer programs for designing a house and with existing plans for you to look at. I have one called 3D Home Architect and one called 5005 Dream house plans. I think they came as a package. We got them at Sam's a few years ago when we thought we were going to have to build instead of buying an existing house. I designed a house from them. These programs were good but we wished we would have bought the deluxe kit. It might be worth your money to get some kind of program.

    The program shows the house you design in 3D so you can see how it will look when built not just a blueprint.