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  #101  
Old Posted Oct 5, 2019, 3:06 PM
eschaton eschaton is offline
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Originally Posted by 10023 View Post
You would really hate the interiors of many 150+ year old rowhouses in London then:

Guilford Street, London WC1
https://www.rightmove.co.uk/property...-61750257.html

Lansdowne Crescent, Notting Hill, London, W11
https://www.rightmove.co.uk/property...-83073368.html

Richborne Terrace, Vauxhall, London, SW8
https://www.rightmove.co.uk/property...-60562551.html

Chepstow Crescent, Notting Hill
https://www.rightmove.co.uk/property...-62847819.html


But these places would have all lost their original interiors long ago. And oftentimes one is renovating to replace work done in the 1950s-70s, which like most things from that era was truly awful.
I mean, it all depends upon the interior. Georgian-era decor tended toward painted woodwork, and is thus appropriate for a Georgian-era home.

Painting the woodwork in an Arts and Crafts or Tudor-style home is another thing entirely.

I mean, not a super old home, but look at this house. Are you seriously telling me it would be better if the woodwork was painted or the interior "modernized?" (This home is very similar to my home BTW).

Here's another, more expensive example. This is a little too heavy on the wallpaper for me. This is quite nice in the main rooms, though what they did with the kitchen is a bit jarring.
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  #102  
Old Posted Oct 5, 2019, 4:55 PM
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^ but all of the woodwork in those houses is painted.

It’s not like any of that is the natural color of the wood. It’s dark stain.

I appreciate the incredible woodwork in old, Victorian, arts and crafts, craftsman, etc. houses, but it’s really just a preference of liking dark or light. With lighter stain, you can see the grain in the woodwork, but it’s still stain... it’s paint by another name. And darker stained wood might as well just be painted dark brown or charcoal... because no wood is actually that color.

It’s personal preference obviously... by painting woodwork white, all you’re doing is altering the fashion/style of the era... it’s not like you’re altering the wood, since it was already altered long ago with heavy, dark stain. I’m just not into the dark, Tudor, clubby, library look inside a house.
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  #103  
Old Posted Oct 5, 2019, 4:57 PM
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Originally Posted by eschaton View Post
I mean, it all depends upon the interior. Georgian-era decor tended toward painted woodwork, and is thus appropriate for a Georgian-era home.

Painting the woodwork in an Arts and Crafts or Tudor-style home is another thing entirely.

I mean, not a super old home, but look at this house. Are you seriously telling me it would be better if the woodwork was painted or the interior "modernized?" (This home is very similar to my home BTW).
I don’t care for that house or decor one bit. Couldn’t live in it. But that means I’m not the right buyer, not that it should be modernised, so I’ll give you that.
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  #104  
Old Posted Oct 6, 2019, 12:09 PM
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Are those generally considered attractive or desirable?
They are, by Stockholm standard, quite expensive these days.
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  #105  
Old Posted Oct 6, 2019, 12:30 PM
mja mja is offline
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With the exception of 2 years in a loft in the early 00's, I've lived in rowhomes my entire life. But then, I'm from Philadelphia.

I could have moved to something else but chose not to do so. By no means are all rowhomes the tiny dark boxes you might find in South Philly and in general the lifestyle has a lot going for it. I've lived in the Fairmount neighborhood for last 15 years. When we outgrew our last 1200 sq. ft. home (3 kids vs. 2.5 bedrooms), we bought a 2600 sq. ft. 3-story 4 bed row with a decent-sized back garden only a few blocks away. A grocery and a cafe are both steps away from my house. I can walk to work and my kids' schools, a half dozen world class museums, or almost anything I could conceivably want to eat, from scrapple to foie gras, and I only put 5-6K miles on my car every year.
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  #106  
Old Posted Oct 6, 2019, 6:54 PM
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I live in one now.
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  #107  
Old Posted Oct 8, 2019, 3:24 PM
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lphia.

... we bought a 2600 sq. ft. 3-story 4 bed row with a decent-sized back garden...
Sounds more like a 'townhouse'... or is there even a difference?
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  #108  
Old Posted Oct 8, 2019, 4:12 PM
eschaton eschaton is offline
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Sounds more like a 'townhouse'... or is there even a difference?
Historically speaking a "townhouse" was the term for the city residence of a noble or wealthy family, which stood in opposition to their "country home." More broadly, historically a "townhouse" could be used to describe any attached home, while a "rowhouse" was a home that was built as part of a group of three or more simultaneously.

Personally, I tend to use "townhouse" to describe modern forms, and "rowhouse" to mean historic ones. I think this works, because we never, ever describe the modern suburban form as being rowhouses.
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  #109  
Old Posted Oct 8, 2019, 4:30 PM
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Originally Posted by eschaton View Post
Personally, I tend to use "townhouse" to describe modern forms, and "rowhouse" to mean historic ones. I think this works, because we never, ever describe the modern suburban form as being rowhouses.
that's a good general rule.

however, the shades of gray in the middle can heavily blur those lines.

for example, there's not a whole lot of functional difference between the two examples of attached housing shown below. but one is well over a century old and the other is contemporary.

old "rowhouses": https://www.google.com/maps/@41.8699...7i16384!8i8192

new "townhouses": https://www.google.com/maps/@41.8685...7i13312!8i6656
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  #110  
Old Posted Oct 8, 2019, 4:35 PM
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for example, there's not a whole lot of functional difference between the two examples of attached housing shown below. but one is well over a century old and the other is contemporary.
I think there's a very big functional difference:

https://www.google.com/maps/@41.8689...7i16384!8i8192
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  #111  
Old Posted Oct 8, 2019, 4:41 PM
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^ and some of the rowhouses from that 19th century example have parking off the alley in back as well:

https://www.google.com/maps/@41.8699.../data=!3m1!1e3

so are the units in that old 19th cenury row that have added parking in back now more accurately described as "townhouses", while the units immediately adjacent to them that have not turned their backyards into off-street parking should still be called "rowhouses"?


as i said earlier, very blurry lines in the middle.
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  #112  
Old Posted Oct 8, 2019, 4:47 PM
iheartthed iheartthed is offline
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I think the garages in the back push this more into townhouse territory than the age of the building.
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  #113  
Old Posted Oct 8, 2019, 4:50 PM
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I think the garages in the back push this more into townhouse territory than the age of the building.
But as i just showed, some of the rowhouses in the old 19th century row have parking off the alley in back as well.

so to know if something is a "rowhouse" or a "townhouse", we first have to know if there is off-street parking off the alley in back?

and so some units in a given row can be either one or the other, based solely on the presence of parking in the back?
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  #114  
Old Posted Oct 8, 2019, 5:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Steely Dan View Post
But as i just showed, some of the rowhouses in the old 19th century row have parking off the alley in back as well.

so to know if something is a "rowhouse" or a "townhouse", we first have to know if there is off-street parking off the alley in back?
I think it's an important distinction. Not only are the new homes built with parking, they're built around parking. The internal flow is to accommodate auto usage, which is different than some 19th century townhouse with a rear parking space.

The occupants might use the rear exit more than the front exit, which matters for streetlife and neighborhood retail.
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  #115  
Old Posted Oct 8, 2019, 5:14 PM
iheartthed iheartthed is offline
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Originally Posted by Steely Dan View Post
But as i just showed, some of the rowhouses in the old 19th century row have parking off the alley in back as well.

so to know if something is a "rowhouse" or a "townhouse", we first have to know if there is off-street parking off the alley in back?

and so some units in a given row can be either one or the other, based solely on the presence of parking in the back?
I think if we're going to draw a distinction between rowhouse and townhouse, then designing the house for detached parking would be the differentiator. Under that criteria, the pre-car era structures would be rowhouses, since they were designed without the automobile being considered, but the new construction houses where the garage takes up at least 20-25% of the lot would be townhouses.

I would still consider the San Francisco houses with parking underneath the house to be rowhouses, though.
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  #116  
Old Posted Oct 8, 2019, 5:19 PM
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I would still consider the San Francisco houses with parking underneath the house to be rowhouses, though.
but why? they're still built around and for parking as well.
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  #117  
Old Posted Oct 8, 2019, 5:20 PM
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I agree there's some grey area, though.

Here are some new construction homes in Cobble Hill, Brooklyn. Two of the five have parking, which is mystifying because the city doesn't allow parking in this area:

https://www.google.com/maps/place/11...!4d-73.9982171

But if you look at the 2009 Streetview, you see there was a warehouse with a curb cut. They were somehow able to grandfather the curb cut/parking. In-unit parking is extremely rare in Brownstone Brooklyn and will command a huge premium:

https://www.google.com/maps/place/11...!4d-73.9982171
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  #118  
Old Posted Oct 8, 2019, 5:21 PM
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I think it's an important distinction. Not only are the new homes built with parking, they're built around parking. The internal flow is to accommodate auto usage, which is different than some 19th century townhouse with a rear parking space.

The occupants might use the rear exit more than the front exit, which matters for streetlife and neighborhood retail.
but the 19th century "rowhouse" i posted with parking in the back has no functional difference from the 21st century "townhouse" i posted with parking in the back.

they both have parking in the back.


once again, really blurry lines here.
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  #119  
Old Posted Oct 8, 2019, 5:31 PM
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but the 19th century "rowhouse" i posted with parking in the back has no functional difference from the 21st century "townhouse" i posted with parking in the back.
I agree there are blurry lines, but you don't see the difference between a home designed prior to the auto age, and one designed around auto usage?

When your home has an attached two-car garage, it's designed for an autocentric lifestyle. Yes, there are 19th century homes with 2 car garages, but tacked on, not dictating the flow.
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  #120  
Old Posted Oct 8, 2019, 5:31 PM
iheartthed iheartthed is offline
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but why? they're still built around and for parking as well.
In the example that you posted, at least 20% of the lot is dedicated to single use case car storage. In the case of a San Francisco house built over a garage, that isn't the case.
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