Versatile Addition for Aging in Place
As this couple heads toward retirement, they decided if they wanted to age-in-place, they’d need a first floor bedroom and bathroom. We designed and built a two-story addition on their 1929 home to create a family room and bathroom that can be easily converted into a master suite. On the second floor, we built a new bedroom and generous closet that the owners can currently use as a master suite. When we completed the kitchen for these homeowners five years ago, they were not considering an addition. However, their plans for aging-in-place drove this renovation project. We added a two-story addition to the rear of the home with a footprint on each floor of approximately 400 square feet.
“This major addition to our home was the second time that we contracted with Landis Construction and we have been completely satisfied with their work on both occasions. This project was well managed, well done and on schedule.” – The Clients/Homeowners
The lower floor has a new versatile living area that can easily be converted into a master suite when needed. The addition includes a closet, and a full bathroom. On the upper level, we added a new master bedroom for the clients to use now, and a large walk-in closet.
In the upper level master bedroom, the ductwork and mechanical requirements prevented us from installing the cathedral ceiling the clients wanted, but we were still able to create volume in the center with a tray ceiling. We added two new high-efficiency HVAC systems, one of which had three zones to accommodate versatile uses of each floor of the new addition. We also installed a top quality air filtration system to improve air quality. To connect the new master bedroom to the existing master bathroom (remodeled five years ago), we converted the original exterior window of the home into a door to the bedroom. The lower floor full bathroom has universal design features including:
- Low threshold entry door to the bathroom.
- Grab bars in the shower.
- Handheld shower fitting on a sliding bar.
- The pony wall between the shower and toilet has blocking so a grab bar can be installed when needed.
- A 5-foot turning radius in the center that could accommodate a wheelchair.
- Though the vanity is not universal design, we discussed this with the clients and they can easily change it when necessary.
Instead of a straight hallway, our designer suggested a more dramatic connection between the addition and original home—one that would allow light the flood through both floors. Though the home had 9-foot ceilings on the lower level, in the stair area the ceiling was only 7-feet. To open up the space, she opted for a step up to a landing across from the original stairs. The landing is open to the lower level. To create this floating landing, our engineer suggested adding a stringer beam that runs from the existing landing to the new landing. The windows in the landing face the north, so we added a skylight to bring in more natural light. A millwork subcontractor copied the design of the original stair railing and posts for the new landing. The existing house is large and we knew the renovation would make it bigger, so we stepped back the rear structure to lessen the impact of the addition. The “bay” bump out adds interest to the addition and has a hip roof. We added a new wood deck to the rear of the house. The owners had water leaks in the past and we thought the roofline of the new addition would shed more water onto the existing roofs. For both of these reasons, we replaced the two flat roofs on the house during the renovation. We created a shed roof above the sunroom and added skylights. We also created a gable roof above the kitchen.
Though there was no physical conflict between the addition and the existing separate garage, the homeowners felt the yard would be crowded and asked us to remove the garage in order to make up for the yard they lost with the addition. This also improved the aesthetics of the alley behind their house and helped us improve storm water management on the site. The original home is stucco, which has a heavy look. We did match the stucco and used it on the addition, but to lighten the feel and add interest, we used fiber cement HardiePanel and trimmed it with a composite product we had never used before: Tru Exterior. We were able to work the material just like wood. The differing shades of paint on the HardiePanel and the trim add depth to the exterior. To add interest to the original stucco portion of the house, we added a decorative trim across the tops of the windows. It’s painted in a slightly darker shade of the trim on the addition.
Re-Using Existing Features: We re-used several of the home’s Pella windows in the addition. Other areas of the home where we re-used original products:
The new addition fits so well with the existing home that it feels like it is original to the house. Though the new room on the main level is meant to be a master suite for future use, the owners are surprised how much they enjoy this windowed room as casual family room with a large screen TV. The new master suite is comfortable and sunny, overlooks the backyard, and has plenty of storage in the walk-in closet.
This is what the clients had to say about their experience: “This major addition to our home was the second time that we contracted with Landis Construction and we have been completely satisfied with their work on both occasions. This project was well managed, well done and on schedule. Great attention to detail and quality. Lead carpenter was excellent and very responsive. We were very pleased with the design phase of our construction project. Landis Construction made every effort to incorporate our requests and presented many useful options that we would not have considered on our own.”
View living 3D model of the Exterior of this home:
View a living 3D model of the Interior of this home: