Thumbs Up or Thumbs Down: New Fairmeadow Eichler Flip

If you didn’t get a chance to see this home, we’d be happy to show it to you. This isn’t our listing, but we’d be happy to give you the in-person tour and our thoughts. This house has had an interesting history — and I think it’s important to start there.

First off, I want to give a HUGE round of applause for bringing back the atrium. Several owners ago, the atrium of this Eichler was enclosed, glass and sliders removed, and perhaps worst of all — concrete was poured to bring the floor level with the rest of the house. Restoring this was no small undertaking — and it’s the kind of thing most people would have just skipped over as too costly, difficult, and expensive.

With that said, I can’t help but get the feeling that the investors ran out time, money, and perhaps patience. This is not the Eichler for those that are sticklers for the details. Period-correct Arcadia sliding doors were sourced for the atrium restoration, but they came from another model and don’t fit exactly right (one is too narrow and the other too tall). The overall effect is something “not quite right.” It’s a small detail and most people probably wouldn’t notice.

The interior is completely redone, with what I think is the “best” reconfiguration of the kitchen in this model. The multi-purpose room was never very big and I like utilizing the entire space for the kitchen — it’s where most guests end up anyway. And by reducing the wall to the dining room, everything flows. Additionally, there is an addition (rimshot!) off the master bedroom that addresses the two biggest complaints: a small master bath and limited closet space. It works.

My only other real complaint is some of the styling. Great mid-century modern design is effortless — like watching BB King play the guitar — it’s deceptively simple-looking. Things here feel like they’re trying just a little too hard. Case in point, the sliding cabinets door in the kitchen and the navy blue glass tiles. It’s just too much. The best Eichler remodels show a little restraint. Also, I feel like it’s a shame they redid the entire house without addressing the front — again, I think it might be a time-money oversight.

This house is a great opportunity for someone who needs a move-in ready Eichler. Yes, it backs to Taft. But it’s done, expanded, and has a pool. If you’re in the market, you need to consider this one.

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  • Reply Melody April 20, 2016 at 10:36 pm

    I can’t believe there are no comments. I agree with pretty much everything you said. I do not know Eichlers even half as well as you do, but I cannot imagine them without an atrium. If the sliders don’t fit exactly right, won’t water and air leak through. Or do you mean that they were not the right sizes that were originally there, and aesthetically it would be noticeable to some. I would notice. I hate the painted beams, for me it really softens it too much to the point of boring. I don’t especially dislike the tile, but agree I would’ve tried to stay as true to original as possible. The colors in the bathrooms are pretty, but the orange tile is not finished well, where the counter ends. The cabinets are very pretty, but again in the bathrooms, I would’ve done shorter wall mount cabinets. Open concept homes are the way of the future and I love them, but it’s also nice to have a room where you can kick back too, and not worry everything is tidy. It does look nice however, love the open sight lines through the house. Not a huge fan of the concrete floors, although I have seen some fabulous ones before. I love the black or gray slate I grew up with. Eichlers are and will probably always be my ultimate dream home, but I do like many others. Cliff May homes are awesome, most just a little small. I have wanted a MCM home for so long. It is home for me, where life was simple and we were happy. Honestly I’m a little obsessed because I’ve been looking so long, and time is running out.
    What other homes in Orange county have MCM architecture? Any more affordable than Eichler! It is the true MCM spirit I am looking for, I love the little details and the character and integrity of the homes. I am great at DIY, and remodels don’t scare me.

    I hope others will comment and share their thoughts and expertise. I f anyone knows of any MCM’s in Orange County area please share with me, I am ready to make my move. If any realtors (Kelly., Stephen, anyone) want to take on an eager helper, stager, etc I would love to learn.

  • Reply Melody April 20, 2016 at 10:48 pm

    Just wanted to add over all I give it a thumbs up!! Wish is wasn’t over my price. Maybe someone else wants to buy as an investment and I could rent it.

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