Kirkwood Flip Update

Welcome back to our latest flip: The Kirkwood House.

In case you missed the first post you can see it here. It was short and showed only the outside of the house. This post includes some inside picts.

351 Sisson front2-001

Here’s the house as we first saw it; a gem in the rough for sure.

It features exceptional landscaping—exceptionally bad.  This yard puts the HELL in Hell-strip (that no-man’s land between the sidewalk and the street).  The hell strip is hard to landscape in the best of circumstances since is gets more abuse than the rest of the yard with exposure to heat and traffic and people getting in and out of cars.  I don’t know what we’re going to do here. Any suggestions?

sisson mailbox before-001

In spite of the unwelcoming yard, the inside wasn’t bad.  The brick fireplace has two craftsman type windows flanking it.  There’s a nice pattern in the brick—hard to see in this picture. The gas heater was probably a good thing on cold damp days to supplement the coal powered furnace.   There’s an old coal chute on the side of the house that goes to the basement.  Probably at least twice a day someone would have to go down in the cellar and “stoke” the furnace and add more coal.  The good ole days weren’t all that good in my opinion. But I digress.

All the rooms are bright with lots of windows.  The hardwoods appear to be original and are in great shape.  A good refinishing is in order, but that’s to be expected.


Here’s the dining room.  Note the chandelier with most of the crystals missing.  Not a problem—they sell ‘em everyday.  The cheerful yellow is the breakfast room with very stylish sheet vinyl.  Ummm.


What about this lovely jalousie window door that leads from the middle bedroom into the knotty pine paneled front room?  Gotta go you say?

Originally, the house had 3 bedrooms. This bedroom was in the front and the door lead to a screened porch which has since been enclosed and paneled.  Don’t be too hard on it, I like this bedroom.  It’s big and has nice windows and a huge closet for a house this age.  But that door…


As I said, the old porch was enclosed and paneled with knotty pine.  The door on the left leads to the living room, the one on the right to the bedroom through the goofy door.  I plan to paint this room and stage it as an office.  It’ll be cute—I promise.


We’ll have to get rid of the window air conditioner and replace it with a window. It’s not bad—really. Well maybe the floor is a little bad and the ceiling is old ceiling tiles.


Now the kitchen… it was bad.  Yes, that is a window that looks out into the laundry room. Nice huh?


The old back porch was enclosed into this lovely sunroom adjacent to the kitchen.  Mudrooms are really in these days.  The multiple layers of vinyl were interesting to say the least.


This is the original bath with a new toilet.  Nice fit on the toilet seat don’t you think?  The newest thing in the house, the toilet, is going to have to be replaced. It sits out from the wall about 4 inches—not good.  We need one that’s flush (hee, hee)  to the wall like in modern homes.


In the back of the house sometime in the late 1960s this little bathroom was added.  I’m sure it was a welcome luxury as the house had only one bath in the beginning.  It isn’t really crooked that was my camera angle.


The middle bedroom…  The little door gives access to the plumbing behind the hall bathtub.  I guess with the thick plaster walls they provided a way to repair leaks.  These days we just cut through the sheetrock and patch it when we’re finished.  It’s a lot harder to do with plaster.


Now my favorite part, the back… Did you notice the rim mounted on the wall for the garden hose?  I kinda like it.  It’s a lot tougher than that flimsy plastic junk I bought for my hose.  Truth be told, our hoses are piled on the ground under the faucets—so this isn’t all that bad.



There’s a nice long driveway that stretches all the way to the back yard.  Long ago we think there was a garage back there.  Old brick houses are good.  Period.


Yes, that’s it—in all it’s glory.  It looks better with the grass cut.


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5 Responses to Kirkwood Flip Update

  1. Bettina says:

    Hello and congratulations!
    I just had to go back to this earlier post to recall what the house looked like before it was met with your wonderful design eye and sense of style! I’m delighted you tiled the front steps and the bronze color is outstanding accent color to Frame the entrance.

    That kitchen! Wow. Not sure how you managed to envision that make over but it’s fabulous! Once I thought you might keep the ceiling open to the rafters but I now see the transformation. Yummy appliances, interesting backsplash tile and simplistic in ways that met the busy modern family.

    Youre blogs are one of a few I take precious time to follow and it has been well worth taking a peek here and there. Thank you for sharing the flip with us and I’m confident you are heading to the title company office soon with eager new owners!


  2. Pingback: Landscape before and After | Pretty Old Houses

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  4. Starr Aaron says:

    One thing I miss about living in Georgia is all the brick.  In Kansas, brick houses are fairly rare, with most being wood shingle, although now everyone gets vinyl siding it seems.  I think the house looks great!  Can’t wait to see more of the work.

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