2009 Idea Home: Before the Remodel | Midwest Living

2009 Idea Home: Before the Remodel

See what our Chicago-area house looked like before a top-to-bottom remodeling.
  • Ripe for a redo

    When Midwest Living first visited this home in Chicago's Lincoln Square neighborhood, it looked like this. While still charming, its original functionality and livability had faded over the years with changes that included turning it into a two-flat apartment.

    Knowing we could give this home a fresh outlook that readers would find inspiring, we adopted it for our 2009 Idea Home project. With our sponsors, our makeover returns the structure to a single-family home with three bedrooms, two-and-a-half baths, a finished basement, and plenty of family friendly living spaces. The following slides show the demolition process and the beginning of the home's transformation. To see the finished home, click on "2009 Idea Home: Chicago Remodel" in the Related Links box below.

  • Exterior with original siding

    When the white siding was removed it revealed the original cladding, probably dating back to the home's construction in 1902.

  • Rear exterior with original siding

    At the back of the house, this photo shows the white siding removed and the exterior stair that was used when the building was a two-flat home.

  • Front exterior

    As more siding was removed, the home's original architecture comes into view.

  • Main level during demolition

    To get the transformation rolling, we gutted the house right down to the studs. This image shows the main floor, looking toward the back of the house.

  • Upper level during demolition

    Looking toward back of house, this demolition photo shows the area that was the bathroom.

  • Hidden staircase

    Years ago, when the home was remodeled into two separate living spaces, this stairway was enclosed and hidden.

  • Upper level sunroom

    This sunroom will become part of the new master bedroom.

  • Sunroom with drywall

    With new windows, a door and drywall, the master bedroom sunroom starts to reveal its future airy attitude.

  • New windows in the front

    The small bay at the front of the house gets a charm boost from new windows.

  • Cabinets arrive

    It was an exciting day when the new kitchen cabinetry arrived. In this photo you can see that the main level is completely reworked and reclad in fresh drywall. The new stone fireplace is visible in the background.

  • Insulation

    A wrap of fresh insulation is one of the updates that make this home ready for its next 100 years.

  • Renewed exterior

    The home's new personality starts to emerge with new siding, windows, front door and foundation stone.

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