When Trish and I first began looking for a home, we found this one through our awesome friend and real estate agent, Zach MacDonald. When we took our initial walk-through, the house was empty and had been on the market for a while, with very little interest. But we fell in love immediately, especially since it was in one of our favorite historic Tucson neighborhoods, Poets Corner.
Unfortunately for us, the timing (and finances) were not right, and the owner took it off the market and began using it as a rental. We ended up finding a cute but small townhouse on the far East side of Tucson that was in our budget and had a garage for our (my) toys.
One year later, we were sick of the 15-mile commute twice a day from our townhouse to downtown, and wanted to try again. We looked everywhere and found a few contenders but nothing quite left us with the same “soul” that the Poets Corner home did. We approached Zach and asked him to contact the original seller/landlord and ask if they were willing to put it back on the market for us.
Zach was doubtful, but she jumped at the chance due to a struggling business and terrible tenants. She was quite motivated and we managed to score the home. Within a whirlwind of time, we had moved in and were overjoyed at our luck.
Our home was built in 1947 on about a quarter-acre of land. It is single story, 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, and coming in at close to 1980 square feet. We’re not sure who the architect was, but our home fell into the Mid Century Modern style. And better yet, very little of it had ever been updated! Meaning: No bad 1970s or 1980s “remodels.” Though being a rental unit, it did suffer some indignities at the hand of a local handyman.
Keep an eye on our blog as we give a virtual tour of each room in the house, with lots of before and after photos (if we remembered to take them!) But below is a brief rundown of the rooms and what we found when we moved in. It’s incredibly lucky we found a home that hadn’t been updated since 1947, but with that comes bad wiring, bad plumbing, an old roof, asbestos, and lead paint!
We’re not quite sure if the “Arizona Room” was original or an addition, but it seems to us that it might be a VERY early edition, perhaps in the mid 1950’s. Open beam ceilings, floor-to-ceiling windows, built in cabinets and the original concrete tile. Woo hoo!
I do believe that the owner before the one we purchased it from WAS a local architect. So if that is true, we want to thank you for not gutting and “updating” our amazing home.
We felt lucky enough that we found a (mostly) unmolested original mid-century home. But what was even more amazing, is the detached two-car garage with a tiny studio apartment! The studio was an absolute mess, with only a tacky set of 1980’s cabinets and a non-functional apartment-sized 1960-ish gas stove. The garage was huge, and we’re currently renovating it to replace the bad, original electrical, add lights, etc.
When planning for our upcoming front yard fence and landscaping project, I found myself downtown looking for any sort of plans that might give me a hint of our property boundaries. I didn’t find much, but I DID find out that the pool and surrounding 5′ cement block wall was added in the mid-1970s. We even have the original diving board! (but don’t tell our insurance company!) And this sucker is DEEP. Built by local pool company that is still in business, it is our summer heat respite. Yes, we do feel guilty about the thousands of gallons of water we use for our pool, but we do our best to keep evaporation at a minimum.
Thanks for reading, and we both hope you follow our digital meanderings as we attempt to bring back the old Poets Corner home back to it’s original glory (or as close as we can get).