Raising the Roof

Tim Kress AIA on Nov 17, 2019

When our client for this addition and renovation job in suburban La Grange first approached BBA principal Tim Kress, they bluntly stated, “Our house is ugly,” and asked, “what can we do to make it look better?”    

The home in question is a 1960s Garrison colonial built amongst a neighborhood of mostly 1890s-1920s homes of various traditional styles.   The unifying element (which our clients’ home lacked) is relatively high pitched roofs, usually housing habitable attic space.    By contrast, the low-pitched (5/12) roof on our clients’ house gave it a squat, squashed appearance which made it stick out like a sore thumb.  Along with its dated materials, the proportions were dragging the curb appeal down.  

Raising the roof to a steeper pitch became one of the main goals of the long-term master plan, along with creating a new kitchen adjacent to the existing family room space, a mudroom/laundry area, and a new master suite with a five fixture bath.   The raised roof would also create potential to add two bedrooms and a bathroom in the attic, ultimately transforming a 2,500 SF, 4 bedroom, 2.5 bathroom house into a 3,500 SF 6 bedroom, 4.5 bathroom home over the two phase project.  

The first phase concentrated on the first floor, replacing the original kitchen with a new, modern one in an addition with a direct, wide connection to the family room.   The original  kitchen space was converted into a powder room, storage, and a mudroom with laundry that serves as the main entrance from the attached garage.  The addition, as well as a new rear porch and patio, were designed and executed largely according to the original concept master plan, with the larger Phase II in mind.  

On the exterior, in addition to the new roof, the dated aluminum siding will be replaced with new fiber-cement siding and trim, the unsightly orange brick will be stained white to match the new siding, and a new front porch will be constructed with matching columns to visually support the cantilevered overhangs.    The result will be a classic, timeless Georgian facade that will look at home in the historic neighborhood for decades to come.

The new roof and dormers have been completed, and already the home better blends into its neighbors.  The trim, siding and stain on the 1st floor brick to complete the exterior transformation are scheduled to begin shortly and finish before winter weather sets in.

We’re looking forward to seeing it.  Please check back for updates.