Anticipating an influx of high-tech jobs in the region, Malta Development of upstate Malta, N.Y., is setting out to capture employees at the new microchip plants as well as young couples and 50-plus buyers from the local market. BartonPartners Architects, Norristown, Pa., designed three product lines for Lakeview Landing, the developer’s 160-lot community. The smallest series is the Carriage Collection, with homes ranging from 1,400 to 2,150 square feet.
The 2,022-square-foot Saratoga has a starting price of $398,800 and is one of the hottest selling Carriage homes. The single-story, open-concept plan has vaulted ceilings in the kitchen, breakfast room, great room, and master bedroom. The private study could be used as a guest room or fourth bedroom. The L-shaped, roomy front porch wraps around a secondary bedroom and is perfect for outdoor relaxation.
Tasked to create a fresh look for Lakeview Landing, BartonPartners designed “very traditional, Craftsman-style elevations that would go well in an Adirondack community,” says Bill Warwick, principal.
“At the moment, the Carriage homes are far and away the most popular,” says Beth Smith of Beth Smith Realty in Malta. Of 18 sales at Lakeview Landing to date, 14 have been Carriage homes. So far, the buyers are predominantly empty nesters.
Small-lot detached captures young professionals
Inspired by classic Mediterranean homes, Residence Two uses gable roofs, half-round attic vents, shared metal accents, louvered shutters, and wainscoting to create a Tuscan façade. Photos: Julio Duenas/Creative Noodle
Encoure at Harlan Ranch, a master-planned community in Clovis, Calif., was slated for townhomes until the recession hit. That’s when Fresno, Calif.-based Wilson Homes decided to switch to detached homes on small lots.
“Leo Wilson and Bill Hezmalhalch targeted the buyers very carefully and came up with the concept of very efficient, small, single-family homes of variable widths so that they wouldn’t look so cookie-cutter,” says Ron Nestor, senior principal with William Hezmalhalch Architects, Santa Ana, Calif. “Once Encoure was built, it became the best-selling project in California during the recession.”
Residence Two, also known as the Trendsetter, targets two single young professionals with its split garage arrangement. Bedroom 2 has an adjacent full bath, while bedroom 3 has a walk-in closet. Two linen closets instead of one enhance storage space. Illustration: William Hezmalhalch Architects
Wilson has been attracting employees from a nearby hospital, some of whom are two young doctors or two nurses pooling their resources to purchase a home. Residence Two is a 1,608-square-foot plan designed for this type of buyer. The garage is split into two bays, one on each side of the covered entry. The great room, kitchen, and dining area unfold to the rear. Upstairs is a master suite, two additional bedrooms, a full bath, and a laundry room.
To make the great room, kitchen, and dining room feel as large as possible, Hezmalhalch designed an island kitchen and specified 9-foot ceilings on the first floor.
The back yard is admittedly small, “but there’s an indentation to create a bigger patio space,” Nestor says. “Most people have dogs, so the yards are sized to accommodate them, too.”
Although the yards are small, there’s enough space for a patio with a fire pit, a dining area, and various seating options.
Encoure’s variety of elevation styles, with their mixture of materials and colors, conveys the feeling of an older, established neighborhood. “Most of the homes have stone or brick accents, which gives them more texture and richness,” he says. “Even the garage doors have special handles and hinges. They’re like little bits of jewelry on the house.”
Of 148 Encoure homes released to date, Wilson has sold 63. The buyers are a diverse group that includes young professionals, retired Baby Boomers, and divorced or widowed individuals.
Tweaking a popular floor plan
The Madison’s extended roof and shed dormer give it character. The covered porch is as large as some interior rooms. Photos and Illustrations: Ross Chapin Architects
Langley, Wash., architect Ross Chapin is constantly updating his portfolio of cottages and small houses. One of the newest additions is the Madison, a 1,739-square-foot, two-story home that has its origins in Chapin’s popular Madrona plan. Here’s what he did:
• The rear half of the Madrona has a bedroom, a full bath, a laundry room, and a study with access to a deck. In the Madison, this portion of the house has been modified with a bedroom extension and rear access to an attached garage.
• A classic 12:12 gable roof incorporates living space within the roof volume. “It’s not a cap on a box,” Chapin says.
The Madison is a new, master-down plan with an attached garage that minimizes wasted space and maximizes the charm and livability of every room.
• Active rooms are positioned toward the front, while private rooms are placed either toward the back or on the second floor.
• The home has the ability to nest with neighboring houses because it can be open or closed on either side.
• The main level features an open living area, dining area, and kitchen. There are no duplicate rooms, such as a breakfast room in addition to the dining room or a family room in addition to a living room.
A widened stair landing accommodates a sitting/sleeping alcove—“a guest room in a pinch,” says architect Ross Chapin.
• The central hall and stair help minimize circulation space.
• To accommodate the 50-plus buyer, the main bedroom suite is on the ground floor and secondary bedrooms are upstairs. A third level can be added with a loft.
7 ways to design better small homes
• Include one room that can serve a number of uses: home office, study, living room, or dining room.
• A kitchen with a simple L-shape allows for easy flow and usability. Try adding an island with a raised bar-top to create an eating area and help minimize the view of the countertops.
• Place windows at the end-of-view corridors to provide a clear view from the front door throughout the home. Where it makes sense in the floor plan, try to incorporate windows on both sides of a corner to enhance visibility through the room.
• In homes that have 10-foot ceilings on the first floor, add interior transoms to borrow light and brighten up the interior of the home.
• Find places throughout the home for built-in shelves so that buyers won’t have to depend on furniture for storage.
• Pop out a small sitting area in the master bedroom to give it elbow room.
• Opaque or frosted glass on windows facing the neighboring house will give it privacy (so homeowners won’t need to keep their drapes closed). PB