San Carlos: White Oaks Remodel


I spent a lot of time on Chestnut Street in the White Oaks neighborhood of San Carlos while in high school, as one of my best friends lived on the street. Back in those days, it was a very friendly family-oriented street, which is still seems to be today. This particular house at 1343 Chestnut, which has only been on the market one week at $1,098,000, has some interesting history, garnered from both the listing agent and an agent I know that came through the house at the same time I was there, and who had shown the property when it was on the market two years ago.

Originally built in the 1950s by an architect, this 4 bedroom/2.5 bath home is only on it’s second owner (which is amazing), who purchased the property in 2005 and did extensive upgrades, including moving walls and reconfiguring the front part of the home and bathrooms. From the outside, this home is unremarkable. A standard rancher with minimal landscaping, it has a neutral color and is in good condition. But inside is a really wonderful, warm family home that looks almost completely new, save a few features.

While the earlier version of the home had dark wood-paneled walls, those have been eliminated in favor of newly plastered walls in wonderful colors, such as sage green, a creamy beige, and other neutral but upscale colors. The open-beam ceilings have been left intact and add nice character throughout the house. The living room fireplace has gone from an old red brick relic to a modern marble gem. The expansion and updating of the kitchen has added more space, an eat-in area, and significantly more cabinets. (You can see the “before and after” scrapbook that the owners kept.) The bathrooms have both been completely redone, one in a very modern style with black glass-fronted vanity, one in green slate with glass-enclosed shower. The bedrooms are of decent size with one of the most unique closet systems I have ever seen. I wish I could describe it, but words escape me. Because I was so entranced by them, I asked to take pictures (see below).


There are, however, a few downsides to the property: It was built lot line at both back and one side, allowing only for a patio, redone in slate, off the living room. While lot line homes are one of my pet peeves, the huge double doors from the living area both open up and expand the entertaining space and makes the issue a bit more palatable. But be warned that there is not really any play space for children, or room for a vegetable garden. Also an issue to me, given the extensive upgrades, were that the hardwood floors did not appear to have been refinished and the windows were not changed out and, given their age and style, seem incongruent with the modern look of the home.

There doesn’t seem to be anything on the market really comparable, given the square footage and remodel, although in doing some research, I did find a hone just going on the market at 153 Arundel in San Carlos that you might want to look at as well.