You Have to See What This Dutchess Home Looked Like 7 Years Ago

After seven years and two homeowners, an architect completely transformed a 1970s mock Tudor into an updated Greek Revival.


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By Bud Dietrich, Houzz

What happens when you have a house that's far from your ideal style and configuration? Sure, you love the location, but the house just isn't at all what you want. You've thought about moving, but you just can't seem to find the same setting or neighborhood anywhere else. You've thought of tearing the house down and building a new home in its place, but the expense is just too much.

If this describes your dilemma, a radical makeover of your house just might be what's needed. You'll get to continue living in the place you love in a home that suits your lifestyle, and you can do it for less cost than either moving or building new.

The total transformation of the home featured here occurred over seven years and involved two different owners. The constant throughout was Dave Beckwith, the architect. Beckwith worked with the first owner to begin remaking the structure into a Greek revival gem and then with the second owner to complete the project. Seems that it wasn't hard to find a buyer for the home, even though the project wasn't complete and the real estate market was depressed. The charm of the Greek revival country home in the making was attractive to many, as Beckwith proudly acknowledges.

 

Project at a Glance

What: A radical makeover
Who lives here: A family originally from New York City
Location: Dutchess County, New York
Cost: About $450,000

 



Before Photo, original photo on Houzz

The owners wanted a Greek revival home, which would be more in tune with the Dutchess County heritage than the 1970s mock Tudor. While this may have been a stylish house when it was first built, it certainly was in need of a serious makeover.



Before Photo, original photo on Houzz

The back, south side of the house had that ubiquitous 1970s glazing system of a fast food restaurant. What on earth were we all thinking back then?

And it's clear by the use of siding on the back and sides, and brick only in the front, that little more than keeping costs low drove the design and construction of the original house.



Beckwith Group, original photo on Houzz

AFTER: The south side indicates just what a radical makeover has occurred. The addition of porches to each side and a porch along the back as well as new siding and materials has totally transformed the house into the Greek revival country home the owners very much desired.



Beckwith Group, original photo on Houzz

The home is located in the rolling meadows of Duchess County, New York, an area where the Greek revival style is common. All of the trademark elements of this style can be seen here: fanlight window, large entablature, classical columns, large entry portico. The new home is a welcome change from the original uninspiring structure.



Beckwith Group, original photo on Houzz

A remarkable thing about this project is that, in addition to the exterior being completely redone, several additions were built. Two of these were 2-foot-wide additions along the north and south sides, done to "flush out" the first and second floors so that the exterior walls aligned. (The original second floor extended 2 feet beyond the first-floor walls.) While some may think it's crazy to build such small additions, it really wasn't. Not only do these two slivers of space help achieve the exterior look desired, but the first floor was expanded just enough to achieve the larger kitchen and living spaces the owners wanted.



Beckwith Group, original photo on Houzz

A view of the east elevation with its new porch and fanlight window above. The new master bedroom, one of those additions, is tucked up in the roof…



Beckwith Group, original photo on Houzz

 

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... so it's a room with a lot of character. And while the shed dormer at the exterior may not be entirely true to a classical Greek revival home, it certainly adds a nice window seat and light to this bedroom.



Beckwith Group, original photo on Houzz

Just about the entire home was redone, including a new kitchen being added, connected to a new porch. Inset cabinetry painted white with a warm-colored wood floor provides traditional style in the interior to complement the Greek revival exterior.

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