Craftsman Homes and Pasadena CA Real Estate

 By: Tracy King
Real estate in Pasadena CA is perpetually in demand by home buyers. Why? It is because Pasadena is gorgeous with many different kinds of neighborhoods with different vibes and character. Pasadena is widely known for it’s variety of older, classic homes that are always on the market, but it is most famous for its “Craftsman” style homes.

In Pasadena and, indeed, throughout Northeast Los Angeles, home buyers moving into the area are anxious to purchase these phenomenal character homes as an investment and then restore them to their original, stunning condition. Then, they’re able to make a small fortune when the time comes to sell.

Pasadena is rich with traditions celebrating variations of architectural design from the 19th century to today. This cornucopia of architecture gives Pasadena and its residents’ credibility as supporters of art, history, preservation, and culture.

The benefits of this type of community are evident in neighborhoods like “Bungalow Heaven” - a 16-block region that is the most concentrated collection of Craftsman Style homes in America. These homes successfully reflect the down to Earth, relaxed vibe of Southern California. Any resident or guest strolling through the neighborhood will feel its lively warmth despite the century year-old age of these homes. Luckily, the city and community consider preservation a top priority. Preservation is held in such high regard that it affects Pasadena Public Policy. This contributes to economic health and neighborhood regeneration.

This Craftsman Movement in Pasadena is also known as the American Arts and Crafts Movement. This style of home was birthed in the late 19th century out of people’s passion for ceramics, art and unique features. This unique style was a blend of the creative minds of two English architects named Charles and Henry Greene. Upon arrival in Southern California they were inspired by the beauty and simplicity of the land and set forth a goal of designing a home that reflected the true aesthetic of Pasadena.

Pasadena was founded in 1875 by a group of Indiana settlers who sought refuge from the winter. The middle-upper class quickly grew fond of the stable land and decided to call it home. Word traveled around and Pasadena quadrupled in size during the first twenty years of the 20th century. The sudden influx of residents left Pasadena in search new homes. Greene and Greene had been working on a design and thus created the construction of the Craftsmen community.

The Craftsmen were exactly what the growing middle class desired. These small homes were built from local wood, painted in dark colors. They were one in a half story with large, open commons rooms and built-in breakfast nooks and cabinets. Fireplaces, porches and house foundations were made out of California river rock. The famous tile-maker, Ernest Bachelder, modeled Craftsmen tile work after the California Mission’s architecture (his own house still sits preserved and in use at 626 South Arroyo Boulevard). Bundled rows of clerestory windows admit light, fresh air or both. Wide porches and comfortable verandas were ideal for chats or naps. These homes resemble ideal dollhouses with their visible beams and low gabled roofs. The best part of all? Their prices ranged from $650-2500.

Pasadena never grew tired of the Craftsmen. This November, Pasadena Heritage celebrates the 25th Annual Craftsman Weekend from the 11th to the 13th. This celebration honors the Craftsman Movement and features house tours of preserved Craftsman homes. There are also bus and walking tours of the surrounding neighborhoods. In addition to the tours, the weekend includes a Show and Sale of over 50 exhibitors of antique and modern furniture of decorative arts. This weekend also includes a silent action, workshops and presentations. They will be hosting exclusive receptions at historic locations around Pasadena during the weekend.

This advocacy for historic architecture has a profoundly, positive impact on the community. This ongoing universal understanding will continue to shape Pasadena’s reputation positively in the future.

But as far as home buying and home selling goes, one thing is certain: These homes are valuable and they are in demand. If you’re looking to sell, it has been a seller’s market for the last decade. If you’re a buyer, you’re going to want to consult with an experienced Pasadena realtor who understands the ins and outs of the Pasadena real estate market.
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