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Saturday, October 1, 2016

House Hunt: Don’t touch that tile!

A nearly century-old El Sereno bungalow now selling for $139,900 is eligible for a mortgage that can help pay for renovations, according to the Redfin listing. At first glance it looks like this three-bedroom home overlooking Huntington Drive could use a total makeover but closer inspection reveals some historic features worth preserving.  The front porch, for example, is supported by four graceful column. Meanwhile,  the living room pictured above has retained a  box-beam ceiling and the wainscot paneling along the walls. Perhaps the most prized historic feature is the fireplace with what looks like Batchelder tile, which were manufactured near downtown L.A. and later Lincoln Heights.  Anyone who buys and remodels this house would be wise to leave that tile and wood work alone to be appreciated by future residents.

Photos from CRMLS



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  1. Random backyard excavations have unearthed four discarded Batchelder tiles that I treasure in all their worn and faded and chipped glory, and whose use remains a mystery since we’re pretty sure the house never had a fireplace.

    It would be heartbreaking should the buyer of the above El Sereno property not leave that fireplace surround alone.

  2. It was a great day when I found out my fireplace was a Batchelder.

  3. Patrick: Me, too! Not one new visitor has failed to appreciate it, even those who wouldn’t know a Batchelder from a Boxelder!

  4. Last year i bought the house at 3102 Farnsworth Ave, the elderly man that lived there since the 30’s just couldn’t keep it up anymore. anyways many original features were uncovered as i pulled the carpets and some of the best features were the built in cabinets. I hope whoever buys this property will appreciate the soul of these old houses. There are many gems like these that are close to the alhambra border they just need a little love.

  5. @Will Campbell, without a doubt, your house had a fireplace. They didn’t make them back then without them. Have you gone into your basement and looked at the framing of the floor joists? I’ll bet you can find a boxed-out square even if the brick or stone foundation is gone.

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