San Carlos: Rancher Remodel


I have to say, that while this 4BR/2.5BA house at 445 Clifton is only blocks off of busy Alameda/San Carlos Avenue, it feels like a more remote location in the hills of San Carlos, without road noise and boasting some nice views of the hills. Priced at $999,000, this typical rancher has undergone several room/area remodels, however, I was left with the feeling that the changes were a bit half-hearted and some design, remodeling, and layout choices could adversely effect a hasty sale of this home.

I believe that if you are in for a penny, you are in for a pound, and when spending money on a remodeling project you should complete the project to give not only a uniform appearance, but to maximize the return on your dollar. Because the current owners have only occupied the home a little more than 2 years, I am unclear on which projects may have been theirs, and which could have come from previous owners. Regardless, there were some inconsistencies that bothered me. The kitchen, remodeled with new middle-of-the-road cabinetry and Corian counters had a cheap linoleum floor and still had the OLD electric stove in place. Similarly, the large master bath has been upgraded with some really beautiful wall and floor tile and a new dual-sink vanity, however the bathtub (with shower over) was about as small as the come. With ample floor space, a larger tub, with or without Jacuzzi, would have greatly enhanced this room. The downstairs powder room is just that, a powder room.–only a toilet and sink, although there appears to be plenty of room to have made a full bath, and this deficiency requires occupants of the downstairs bedroom go upstairs to bathe. Laundry and basement storage access are available only through this downstairs bedroom, which would make it less feasible as a bedroom, and more suited towards an office or family room. The bath on the main floor, for use by guests and the occupants of the two upper floor bedrooms, has not been remodeled and maintains its 1954 (non)charm. There is also a need to upgrade many of the windows to more efficient dual-pane.

However, if you can overlook these flaws, you can enjoy entertaining in the airy living room with adjacent dining, or on the outdoor decks, of which there are three levels. The master bedroom is very large for a home this size with fireplace, picture window with a view, and the three single bedrooms are of decent size, one of which has a private deck. And the bonus for this property is the reasonable cost per square foot of just $469. Many properties in the area are listed in the $500-700/sq ft. range.