A complete transformation

Remodeler turns a 60-year-old home into a modern, energy-efficient masterpiece.

February 18, 2013

Remodeler turns a 60-year-old home into a modern, energy-efficient masterpiece

Located in a quiet neighborhood in East Millcreek, Utah, a 60-year-old ranch/rambler home was recently transformed into an updated, energy-efficient craftsman-style modern home.

Jackson & LeRoy Remodeling and Renovation Design Group, both located in Salt Lake City, were contracted by the homeowners to create an addition to the front of the home while also reconfiguring the interior spaces to accommodate the changing needs of the family.

The owners had lived in the home for nearly 20 years and had no desire to move, but it was clear the family was outgrowing the footprint of the original home.

The home’s floor plan included many smaller spaces but no large gathering area for family and friends to spend time together.

The owners were also looking for an updated exterior to the existing home. An earlier remodeling project done by the previous owners in 1980 added space above the garage; however, it was out of proportion to the rest of the home.

“The way the upper bedrooms were cantilevered out over the front of the garage made it look top-heavy,” says Annie Schwemmer, AIA, principal, Renovation Design Group. “The flatness and size of the addition in conjunction with the garage combined to create a mass that simply dominated and overwhelmed the rest of the house.”

Additionally, the final priority of the project set forth by the owners was to transform the house so that it would be as energy efficient as possible.

“The family felt a social responsibility to build a home that was as energy efficient as possible,” says Jeremy Jackson, CGR, CGP, co-owner, Jackson & LeRoy Remodeling. “They also wanted the home to be comfortable.”

According to Jackson, the remodeling goals put forth by the owners were accomplished by adding 2,439 square feet to the existing footprint of 4,494 square feet for a total of 6,933 square feet. Meanwhile, Jackson was charged with keeping the entire project under the given budget.

Extending the footprint of the home

The first steps to the project involved the extension of the left side of the home into the front yard. By extending the home, they were able to add a front porch, open up the entryway, and create space for a home office that is accessible from the entryway as well as the master bedroom. The main level interior walls were also reconfigured to create a large great room and kitchen, a formal living room, and a dedicated laundry/mud room.


Column Wraps: Fypon
Custom Cabinetry: Custom by Craftsman Kitchens
Doors: Custom
Door Hardware: Emtek
Fascia: MiraTEC
Faucets: Moen
Fireplace: Kozy Heat Fireplaces
Flooring: Marmoleum Forbo
Garage Doors: Amarr
HVAC: Lennox
Kitchen Appliances: KitchenAid
Soffit: James Hardie
Windows: Pella Pro Line

Next, the entire roof structure was removed and new roof trusses installed to create a different roofline that resulted in higher ceilings throughout the home.

“The new roofline completely changed the curb appeal of the home. It also allowed us to raise the ceilings of the main floor to nine feet,” says Jackson.

It also provided the needed size and mass to the rest of the house that helped balance it with the previous addition. New exterior trim details along the fascia and soffits created the welcoming, modern look desired by the owners.

“The dormer also created architectural interest and helped break up the larger roofline,” says Schwemmer.

The new roofline also created a bonus room out of all the new attic space. “We were also able to add a vault and skylights to the kitchen, which made the great room space even more pleasing and interesting,” says Schwemmer.

For the expansion of the garage, a steel beam was installed to carry the loads of the existing upper level over the expanded and entirely open space.

“A challenge arose when we realized the garage was not square with the house. As a result, the steel beam installed in the garage is not completely parallel to the front of the house,” says Jackson.

When Jackson & LeRoy remodeled the basement, all of the drywall and insulation were removed from the walls. Another large steel beam was installed to open up the basement great room and a kitchenette area, creating a socializing space for the teenage children.

Energy efficiency

The home’s energy efficiency was increased significantly due to the installation of several energy-saving applications designed to create the tightest building envelope possible.

Old aluminum windows were replaced with energy-efficient wood windows on the main floor and fiberglass windows in the basement.

A number of insulation systems were also utilized for the home to create a very tight building envelope. All of the home’s exterior walls were filled with blown-in fiberglass insulation. Open-cell spray foam insulation was installed to the roofline for the conditioned attic space.

To save on natural gas consumption, a solar hot water system was installed to provide hot water for the entire home. Photo-voltaic solar panels also span across the southern-facing roof to supplement the home’s energy requirements. Excess electricity that is produced is returned to Rocky Mountain Power and credited on the owner’s bill.

“The monthly electric bills for the remodeled home during the summer have been between $10-$20,” says Jackson.

The entire home’s plumbing, electrical, and mechanical systems were updated. Heat recovery ventilators were installed to improve air quality and comfort.

“New, efficient furnaces and ventilators were installed to help heat the home and keep the interior fresh,” says Jackson.

Additionally, a propane-powered backup generator automatically transfers the home’s electricity needs to the generator in the event of a power outage.

“Neighbors were excited about the transformation of the home. It has great curb appeal and fits in well with the rest of the homes,” says Jackson. PR

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