Post Number: 357
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 12:30 am: || |
That the rear end of many homes in Detroit and the suburbs look like this. I am not a fan of tract housing but I have always liked these bungalow styles. I always like to see this style of house lined up perfectly with others down the street as in this photo They are usually 1.5 stories and were built after WWII. I dont know much about them and was wondering during what years they were built. How much they cost? Who built them? I appreciate the function and simplicity compared to many newer homes. Anyone have any good memories of their bungalow?
Post Number: 1591
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 12:49 am: || |
They're mistakenly called bungalows by almost everyone, but they're not bungalows. Technically, they're Cape Cods ("Capes"), which was the most popular form of new tract housing in this region in the decade right after WW II.
They were built in both brick and frame versions all over Detroit and the inner-ring suburbs, with and without dormers.
(Message edited by Fury13 on May 01, 2007)
Post Number: 308
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 12:55 am: || |
The one I lived in was built in the 1940s and it was in Berkley, a little north of 11 Mile and a little west of Coolidge. By the way a holla to my Berkley peeps; 75th anniversary of that City is this month.
Some older bungalows I've been in from the 1930s had the "octopus heat" where the furnace was in the center of the basement and had no blower; the heat rose through pipes that ran out to the corners (hence the name).
I remember mine well; the top floor was a long, skinny bedroom and the main floor had two very small bedrooms, decent living room, small kitchen and really no good eating space. The bathroom was along the rear wall between the bedrooms (note the small window in the picture above). The staircase was in the center running parallel to the front wall of the house.
If you put good insulation in and got decent windows it was very efficient to heat, about 1000 square feet or so. If there was a garage it was detached.
I have a bigger house now because there are a lot of us living here (Catholic family and all that, you know), but for a small family that's a very nice arrangement of a house. The only beef I had about it when I lived there, as mentioned, was there was neither a dining room nor a good eating space anywhere else.
In the mid 1980s in Berkley you could get one of these for $45000 or so. Not anymore. I have no idea what they cost new.
Post Number: 1272
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 1:04 am: || |
I think one of the most destructive things in the older, inner ring suburbs, is the destruction of the Cape Cods, bungalows, and other livably modest houses in favor of outrageously expensive big box houses that take up the whole yard. All you have to do is look at the old downtown Birmingham neighborhoods to see the effect.
With the growing awareness of the environment, it's mind-boggling why this is happening. Families are smaller today, and bazillions of empty nester baby boomers are going to live -- where? In a 7-bedroom, 7-bath monster house?
Post Number: 1261
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 7:29 am: || |
We lived in one of these houses in NW Detroit that my father bought brand new in 1947, $9,800 on the GI bill. we had for a brief while, all seven kids and my folks under that roof, and an aunt that lived with us before my brother and sister were born, so we always had a house-full in that little place. I look back at the pictures of that neighborhood and I notice how well kept those homes were and how much pride people had in their homes, no matter how ordinary they might be.
Prof.Scott--those heating plants in those homes were (are) called "gravity furnaces"--there is a single cold air return in the entrance floor hallway, the air falls into it, is heated in the furnace and rises up to the upper two stories. You didn't get much heat in the basement, my dad installed a small gas heater down there, as we had a bedroom and bathroom down there.
Those homes were (usually) built with an unfinished upstairs. My dad finished ours by drywalling the ceiling and walls. There was a big set of dresser drawers built into one wall.
Those homes were built in a hurry after WWII. All of those veterans coming home left as boys out of school and came home men, with money in their pocket, and many married and started families right away. I know that to my father, who grew up during the depression the ability to own your own (nice) home was a huge thing. It's so taken for granted today. I know of young couples who get a brand new McMansion right after they get married and have even heard the phrase "we couldn't live in a used home"
(Message edited by 56packman on May 01, 2007)
Post Number: 224
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 7:52 am: || |
Every bigfoot or teardown in Birmingham is one less house built out at 32 Mile Road.
Post Number: 53
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 9:26 am: || |
I lived in one of these houses in Huntington Woods. A little different from the Prof's though, we did have a dining room and our main floor bathroom was across from the stairway, not between the two bedrooms. Our upstairs was all finished in knotty pine and we had 3 bedrooms up there with a half bath. Dressers were built into the walls. I have no idea when it was built, but we moved there in 1956, I think. The prior owners did the remodeling of the upstairs. We also had a screened in porch off the back. The livingroom had a big fireplace and mantel with a huge mirror over it from mantel to ceiling. It was a great house (and neighborhood) to grow up in!! The house is still there..on the corner of Hart & Scotia. It was even memorialized in a painting someone made for the new (back in 1962 or so) library.
Post Number: 567
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 10:12 am: || |
I lived in one of those in Lincoln Park on Mill Street that my stepdad bought for about $30,000 from a friend of his in 1989. I lived in the basement with my two older brothers while my two younger brothers shared a bedroom on the main floor. My parents had the "Master Suite" upstairs which was mainly off limits to us boys. If we needed something we would usually yell up the stairs. We had to turn one of the main floor bedrooms into a dining room that could seat 7 since the kitchen was only large enough for a 2-seater table. We had a garage with a covered patio and a yard with the biggest tree on the block. We had a small basketball court with a hoop on the garage, and our house was always the one with a bunch of bikes dumped on the lawn because that was where all of the neighborhood kids would meet before going up to the high school or the park to play sports. My backyard looked almost exactly like the one in the picture. The joint in the cement that was an extension of the line of the back of the house was the three point and take back line, and you had to shoot over the wires and under the trees. the rim was only 9'6" because otherwise missed shots would roll off the garage and into the neighbor's yard. At least three times when I was taking it to the hoop I was fouled through the garage window by one of my brothers or a friend. Most of my friends growing up also lived in the same type of house with a similar set up. A lot of times you wouldn't even knock you could just walk to your friends house and go straight to the basement without disturbing the parents. My mom was also raised in a house about the same size, two blocks away, except they had 11 kids in that little place on Lincoln. My grandpa still lives there.
Post Number: 2168
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 10:24 am: || |
I love Fareastsider's observation on how iconically Detroit these are, especially representing the post war period of Detroit. These bungalows are found in working class neighborhoods all over SE Michigan: Roseville, Madison Heights, East Detroit, Ypsilanti, Lincoln Park, Brightmoor, etc. They're much maligned now. But I wonder when they'll become chic.
One thing I've always enjoyed about these homes are the ways they've been customized over the years to accomodate the families living in them. They work well with this customization. Finished attics are common as are expanded dining rooms.
A lot of great memories growing up and going to friends houses who's families were crammed into these bungalows (Yes, they are bungalows, not Cape Cods. Cape Cods would have been built with a fully finished 1.5 story upper floor with dormers. Detroit area bungalows were not originally built with a finished attic or with dormers.)
Post Number: 170
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 10:26 am: || |
I currently live in one on the Northeast side of Detroit right on the border of Harper Woods. Originally built in 1949...have no idea what the cost was, since that was before I was born. The prof explained it perfect. I purchased the house in 2000 and have redone the entire thing. Will be selling it next month...if anyone is interested.
Post Number: 6255
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 10:32 am: || |
In Canada they are refered to as "Victory Housing". They were built during and after WWII with the population boom, and housing shortage.
On our side they were initially built by the Government. Between 1941 & 1945 - 19 000 of these houses were built across Canada. In 1946-47 - 13 000 more were built to house returning servicemen. Of the 32 000 units built in Canada, 2500 were in Windsor. Many of these local units still survive today.
Photos and more -> http://internationalmetropolis .com/?p=80
Post Number: 869
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 11:28 am: || |
Ever notice ... how posts that have vague names irritate people?
Post Number: 1388
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 12:29 pm: || |
Our first house was "one of those". It was ten years old when we bought it in 1959, and was located at 19940 Lindsay (8 Mile/Southfield area). Cost then was 12,500. During our 12 year stay there, I built out the attic into an additional bedroom, and built a rec room in the basement. Sold it in 1971 for 17,500. I don't think I kept up with inflation on it.
Post Number: 4305
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 12:33 pm: || |
My dad grew up in a similar one near 8 and Kelly. They all have the same shape, yet each one is a just a tad different with different colored siding or shutters. I don't know if this is true but I hear they could put one up in 4 days.
Post Number: 421
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 12:38 pm: || |
I have relatives that live in a similar ranch-type house in Mt. Clemens. They have lived there at least 50 years (original owners) and raised six kids in the three bedroom home. It's on a now-tree lined street near Mt. Clemens General Hospital. I remember going to visit and I couldn't figure out which house was theirs. I knew what kind of cars they had so I always looked for them. My mom went to a house a couple of doors down and the lady laughed, saying it happened all the time, and pointed her in the right direction. I like driving through streets with these type of houses. It reminds me of a time when life was so simple.
Post Number: 2582
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 12:40 pm: || |
At what point will these homes see the decay that Detroit's housing stock has seen? I give them another 25 years. Then we will be tearing them down just like the older homes in Detroit. The sprawl and subsequent abandonment of homes continues. These homes are just now passing out of there 3rd/4th owner stage and coming into the early rental stage of the abandonment process. The imaginary boundaries of the suburbs will not protect them from the encroaching decay.
Post Number: 439
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 12:48 pm: || |
I perceive pretty much every idea in that post as wrong.
Post Number: 2584
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 12:53 pm: || |
Sorry John, if you haven't noticed the decay has already jumped to the suburbs. Anyone who can't see that is in denial. Look at Roseville, Eastpointe, Lincoln Park, Melvindale, River Rouge, Southfield and Highland Park. The quality of the homes between Detroti and the suburbs has not changed.
Post Number: 47
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 1:02 pm: || |
I moved out of a bungalow into a cape cod in 79. Bvos description is correct.
Post Number: 440
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 1:05 pm: || |
Sorry back Ndavies, I live in Ferndale, my entire block consists of bungalow homes built in 1922, and pretty much every one of them has been completely remodeled in the last few years. I'm in the process of doing mine. There is very little chance they will be knocked down in the next 25 years. Before I moved there, I lived in Southfield. Most of the homes in that neighborhood were built around the 50's. Again, the ones that were getting old were generally fixed up when ownership changed hands. There were no "decaying" homes anywhere nearby. Your blanket statement that the suburbs are falling into decay just doesn't hold water. The rehabilitiation I've seen in my area has been quite strong. As for some of the other cities you've listed, Highland Park is hardly a "suburb", and many of the others felt the pain Detroit felt at the time Detroit felt it. It's not as if Lincoln Park just recently started having hard times.
This stuff works in cycles. It's not as if Detroit is a big hole slowly engulfing Southeast Michigan in Decay. Some of the inner ring burbs have been through their roughest times already and have been on the comeback for sometime.
Post Number: 2585
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 1:14 pm: || |
You're in denial John. There are a few island neighborhoods in Detroit that also have seen the revival Ferndale and Royal Oak have seen. Unfortunately the unrelenting decay will pass around the good neighborhoods just as it has with Boston Edison, IV, Corktown and Palmer park. The Decay will continue. We as a region have done absolutely nothing to stop it. Those tiny cities police and fire departments will also be swamped with the incoming decay and lawlessness. As much as the current residents are fighting against it, These neighborhoods are not immune to Detroit's problems. If this regional recession gets any worse Cities with older housing stock will be in deep trouble.
Post Number: 442
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 1:21 pm: || |
Are you an investor Ndavies? Do you use this same logic with your investments? Or do you realize some things work in cycles, and sometimes you need to leave your money in to see returns? This regional recession doesn't go back farther than about 9 years, which is when the Nation's recession started. Most of the country bounced back, we've had a harder time with it. Hardly enough time to start putting a "the end is near" sandwich board on and ring a bell at the corner.
Post Number: 8979
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 1:27 pm: || |
I don't think that Ferndale is in immediate danger but I agree with NDavies.
Per SEMCOG (granted, take these numbers with a grain of salt):
Ferndale 4/1/01: 22,105
Ferndale 4/1/07: 20,210
A net loss of 8.6%. The argument may be made that this is because homes are being bought by singler homeowners or couples without kids. Even if that is the case then you have to wonder what direction the schools will take which will have an effect on those same people as they have kids or their kids age.
It won't happen in an instant but the sitaution is certainly feasible.
Post Number: 443
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 1:33 pm: || |
Jt1, find me a median household income comparison for Ferndale between those dates, I'd find that much more interesting and relevant. Better yet, find one that compares 1990 to 2007.
Post Number: 1389
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 1:43 pm: || |
With all due respect to Johnlodge, I tend to agree with Ndavies. Those homes were made in response to the tremendous post-WW II demand and were not of quality construction. Even if well maintained, I think their life span is short.
Most of these homes were also built with asbestos siding. Demolition will be a headache.
Post Number: 8982
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 1:45 pm: || |
Jt1, find me a median household income comparison for Ferndale between those dates, I'd find that much more interesting and relevant. Better yet, find one that compares 1990 to 2007.
How so? Younger, professional people are not the model of stability for a community.
Post Number: 4308
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 1:47 pm: || |
Yeah, my grandma's house had the absolute worst basement ever. The walls were made of cinder blocks rathe than poured concrete. maybe that's the way they made them back then. Harper Woods has a lot of similar homes, yet they are made of brick and look as if they were one step higher than the standard GI housing.
Post Number: 358
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 2:03 pm: || |
Anyone got any photos of these neighborhoods or any tract post war neighborhood photos when they were new or under construction? Like the one on the international metropolis page.
Post Number: 534
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 2:05 pm: || |
There is one on my parent's title or whatever when they bought their house in 1952 - no trees, no bushes. Just a photo of our house and then like 6 or 8 more houses on the same side of the street.
Post Number: 359
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 2:10 pm: || |
If it is on a blue backing it is probably the mortgage survey....I used to do those it shows the front and side photo and has the lot survey on back? In my work is where I learned a lot about these houses. They all measure the exact same. The back of most of these houses are 24.2ft or 26.4 if it is a bit bigger. Sometimes the survey of one property such as setbacks from the property lines would match the neighbors exactly!
Post Number: 2588
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 2:16 pm: || |
Actually John, I am a real estate investor. One of the biggest, most common mistakes you can make in Real Estate is holding too long. I'm sure there were many investor in Detroit who thought like you.
My current properties are on the fringe of the sprawl and in the CBD. These are the two areas that will see continued growth. I've already dumped the second of two inner ring homes I've owned. Both were complete rehabs. You know shitty homes on nice streets. Buy low, put money in and sell at market rate. I think most first inner ring homes hit their price peak 2 years ago. They will encounter stagnant to falling prices over their continued life. It will be accelerated, if the economy continues it's current funk.
The homes closest to Detroit are right on the line of the flip from being owner occupied to rental. After 20 years as rentals most of these homes will look like the clapped out homes of Detroit.
Post Number: 225
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 2:29 pm: || |
If you look at the number of households in Ferdale for 2000 and 2007, the numbers are pretty much identical:
Empty nesters, fewer children, etc. contribute to the decline in population.
Post Number: 8991
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 2:48 pm: || |
Which, as I stated above is not the model of stability for a community. The older residents pass away and the younger residents move on when they have children.
Post Number: 2589
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 3:03 pm: || |
Yep, and soon those empty nester baby boomers are going to want to retire to Florida. All part of the continuing economic system we have set up in this country.
There is a pattern to life that is extremely predictable. Right now The baby boomers are about to retire. The echo boomers (baby boomers children) are in college or their first home buying phase. This has been inflating the price of these small starter homes. After they buy their first homes there will be very little demand to increase the number of homes in the market. So the rest of the country will see the flattening of the housing market we have seen in Detroit. These echo boomers will be looking to sell these small first homes for something bigger with room for their children. Who are they going to sell all these small homes to when the population following them isn't as large? The housing market in this country will be relatively stagnant for probably 15 to 20 years. Then the echo boomer kids will want homes. (ever wonder why there was a recession in the mid 70's and we're now about to have another one 25 years later? It Couldn't have anything to do with the age of a large chunk of the population.)
Thinking along those lines I hope you're all buying stock in funeral companies and their suppliers. All those baby boomers are going to start dying real soon.
All the factors are in place that caused the disinvestment in Detroit during the 70's and 80's. The economy is stagnating, crime is rising, and the age of the population is in a similar place. It will just repeat again in the suburbs.
Post Number: 41
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 4:03 pm: || |
Beginning on page 95 of Berkley's new Master Plan, you can see a program to enhance bungalows to better fit the needs of today's homeowner. The Plan makes some good arguments, but I would counter that many of the features identified as negatives could be addressed by lifestyle changes, and thus residents could maintain the integrity of their home. My family and I love our 1200 sf bungalow!
http://www.berkleymich.org/web /documents/CityofBerkleyMaster Plan.pdf
Post Number: 17
|Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 4:11 pm: || |
My parents bought one of these houses in Wyandotte, brand new in 1952 for $10,000 on a VA loan. My mother sold it in 1989 for $40,000. Ours did not have an upstairs, just a crawlspace up above but it was built so that you could add on rooms upstairs.
It was heated with an old gravity furnace. The furnace was initially coal fired with a coal bin in the basement but it was converted to an oil burner with a heating oil tank in the basement about 1955. After the furnace conversion the old coal bin became a fruit cellar. The old gravity furnace and oil tank were still there and working when my mom sold the house in 1989. If I get a chance I'll scan in a picture of the house shortly after my folks bought it. They were usually very basic houses. My parents even had to seed their own lawn!
My parents lived in an apartment on 25th St. in Detroit for several years before they moved to Wyandotte. It was the only house either of them ever owned. Some of the young couples back then bought houses like this within the city of Detroit first, then moved to the suburbs later, while others bought their first house in the inner ring suburbs directly, like my parents. Also Downriver at least, some of these houses were sold to people moving into Michigan directly from the south, often Kentucky or Tennessee. That would describe several of our neighbors. Then there were people who moved from older housing or apartments right in Wyandotte into one of these...in that Wyandotte is a little different in that a good percent of it was already built up before WW II.
There are some other parts of the country that have quite a few of these type houses also, built during the same period. I live in Minnesota and parts of Saint Paul plus some of the inner ring suburbs here have a good number of these same houses. They cost anywhere from about $160,000 to $200,000 here now.
Post Number: 34
|Posted on Wednesday, May 02, 2007 - 10:38 pm: || |
Actually demolition is no problem at all on an asbestos sided home . Asbestos siding is actually concrete siding with less then 10% asbestos added as a hardening agent . Concrete would be brittle at that thickness without the asbestos . That siding is NOT considered a waste hazard and is accepted at regular landfills . When houses with that particular siding are demolished only change they make is watering it down real well with a fire hose to cut down on dust .
Post Number: 4343
|Posted on Wednesday, May 02, 2007 - 10:45 pm: || |
NDavies pretty much nailed it.
I recommend one take a trip through Eastpointe between Gratiot and Kelly, just north of 8 Mile Road. Closer to Gratiot one will see the cheaper “bungalow” homes, but as you drive east towards Kelly you will notice a lot of really well-construction ranch homes. I assume these ranches were built maybe 10 years later, but the construction is so much better.
Post Number: 1597
|Posted on Wednesday, May 02, 2007 - 10:58 pm: || |
Bvos, again, you are wrong. Everyone loves to call these houses bungalows, but they are Capes. Cape Cods DO NOT have to have dormers. And there is no law calling for the upper level to be finished in a Cape when first built.
Click on the style listings along the left side of the above-linked Web page to see the difference between a Cape Cod and a bungalow. The bungalow is almost inherently an Arts & Crafts, or Craftsman period, construction.
http://tigger.uic.edu/depts/ah aa/imagebase/buildings/Files/P ostwarHouse.htm
http://architecture.about.com/ od/housestyles/ig/Bungalow-Pic tures/index.htm
Post Number: 115
|Posted on Wednesday, May 02, 2007 - 11:01 pm: || |
I live in a 1200 sq. ft. bungalow in Lincoln Park. It was built in 1956 and is very solidly constructed. It is the perfect size for my family with a huge master bedroom and bath upstairs and a finished basement.
My motto? More house=more house to clean. I'll keep what I have...modestly priced in a clean, safe and friendly neighborhood.
Post Number: 135
|Posted on Thursday, May 03, 2007 - 12:06 am: || |
Cape cods also usually have a much steeper roofline compared to a bungalow. Our old house was a 1939 cape codish and getting estimates for a new roof was a painful experience.
Bungalows seem to have gone out of style (for the most part) by 1930ish. Many of the typical "bungalow" elements (especially on the interior) would have never worked with the cheap post war construction boom.
It all started going downhill when drywall became the standard.
Post Number: 49
|Posted on Thursday, May 03, 2007 - 10:05 am: || |
Learn something new every day. Thanks, Fury13
Post Number: 127
|Posted on Thursday, May 03, 2007 - 10:48 am: || |
My parents bought their "story and a half" in Dearborn for $8,000-something - of course the mortgage payments added much to the final cost. The developer was Garland Homes I believe, and street after street were full of 'em - all asbestos sided, and very homey. My room was that second story "tunnel," which I claimed after my sister moved out. Ahhh memories...
Post Number: 31
|Posted on Saturday, May 05, 2007 - 1:37 pm: || |
WHat do you think of the prospects for St. CLair shores and Fraser?
Fraser does not have cape cods to any appreciable extent, and st clair shores does, in more southern parts.
Both are primarily 1950's and 60's, w/ remaining vacant lots pretty well filled in by 1980.