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Anyone see Curb Appeal on HGTV?

11 replies [Last post]
Joined: Apr 26 2003

They redid a house in a neighborhood of single story homes that looked like Eichlers... maybe Alliance Homes?

The house had been extensively remodeled and a second story added. The remodeled house itself looked rather, well, incompatible with the neighboring houses. That, to me, was very disappointing.

So, I was just wondering if anyone knew anything about the house and the neighborhood it was in.,1797,HGTV_37...

Joined: Mar 20 2003


what a hideous thing to do to a home, regardless of whether it's an Eichler or not. This kind of crap should not be tolerated. I feel sorry for the neighbors to have to view it! The dumb-ass producer wouldn't know a craftsman house if it bit him on the backside.

I am telling you, the evil redevelopment forces are coming, protect your homes and neighborhoods today!

HGTV really blew this one. Showcasing a abomination of architecture. AHHHRR!

Joined: Apr 10 2003

They took the easy way out-typical remodel-build it out to its max allowable fooprint and make it a typical overscaled home for the neighborhood. Seems like HGTV coulda tried to be a little more creative at remodeling this one (even with a 2nd story!) at making it more compatible with the neighborhood/contemporary style. (Oops I'm assuming that the rest of the neighborhood isn't already done in overscaled homes and they're just the last)

Wishing for modern home.

Joined: Apr 26 2003

When watching the program, I always try and look behind the host and guests on the show to see what the surrounding homes look like. In this particulary episode, none of the surrounding homes that I saw had been expanded. They were all low slung single stories with flat roofs, similar to the before picture of the featured house.

As the program is filmed in Northern California (and often Marin County), I was wondering if maybe this house helped set off the ban on second story additions in Eichler and Alliance neighborhoods in Marin County.

One would think that the producers of Curb Appeal would be able to be more selective in the houses they choose to feature on the program. There are numerous genuine craftsman houses in Northern California they could have featured, rather than tacking on craftsman-style decorations onto a house with a less than cohesive architectural style.

I was hoping that a neighbor could offer insight as to the house and the neighborhood.

In general, I can understand HGTV pushing viewers to remodel with readily available materials that are sold at Lowe's or the Home Depot, as they are major sponsors of the programming. I do not understand why HGTV and the producers of the shows have such a hard time presenting viewers with tasteful, well thought out projects that are not only sensitive to the architecture of the house, but also the architecture and character of the neighborhood.

Joined: Mar 20 2003

From what I saw on the web site I have to say to HGTV's credit that they did not do the remodel/addition. That was done prior to their involvement (see the 2nd before picture). At least they were able to salvage part of the horrible monstrosity by painting and landscaping it nicely.

Joined: Jul 16 2004

That particular show featured an Eichler in Marin County. I watched it also and recognized the street. It's right down the road from my mother's house. It's in Terra Linda on Del Ganado (which is off Freitas Parkway). It does look really silly as the majority of the Eichlers on that street have kept to the original architecture and not altered them, at least not on the exterior.

I lived in an eichler home for about six years in Marin County. My mother still lives in the house (since 1970) and has, while my dad was still alive, made some updates to the home, but it is still uniquely Eichler.

Joined: Jul 16 2004

I must apologize for my previous response. I had been thinking of another episode of Curb Appeal, not the one you are referring to. The one owned by PartyQueen was the program I had seen and it is near my mom's house. Sorry for putting my foot in my mouth. New to this site and jumped in too quick!

I lived in an eichler home for about six years in Marin County. My mother still lives in the house (since 1970) and has, while my dad was still alive, made some updates to the home, but it is still uniquely Eichler.

Joined: Apr 10 2003

During the break in the show. Ya might spy a possible Eichler in a Netflix ad-85% sure it's one-the guy is in a glassy post and beam modern living room yakking about Netflix, then a brief cut to the DVD being mailed-shows a pebbled aggregate floor where supposedly the DVD drop after they are delivered via mail and go thru the mail slot in the home-somehow I think there is a dog in the commercial too.
Anyone know about this commercial-perhaps filmed in the X-100?

Wishing for modern home.

Joined: May 8 2004

I live nearby. Yes, this was one of the two houses in Terra Linda that helped set off the ban on second story additions in Eichler homes here. Whether this extends to Alliance neighborhoods and the rest of Marin County I'm not sure.
I can assure you all that we had a good party when that ban passed.

Joined: Apr 26 2003


Thank you so much for the information. I hoped that such an addition would spark some controversy in the neighborhood. Considering the debate that the remodel caused, I am surprised that the owners would want to call so much attention to themselves.

Congratulations on the ban on second story additions.

Joined: Apr 26 2003


I did find additional information regarding the homeowners and the issue of the second story addition:

Marin Independent Journal

Judge allows disputed 2nd story to stand
By Nancy Isles Nation
IJ reporter

Friday, April 09, 2004 - Terra Linda

couple sued over addition

A Terra Linda couple will keep an 869-square-foot, second-story
addition to their home following a court ruling yesterday in a
lawsuit filed by a neighbor seeking to have the addition torn down.

Lyle Simon, 45, and Amy Farrell, 37, said they were relieved at the
decision by Judge John A. Sutro Jr. after a non-jury trial that
included more than three days of testimony.

Subsequent to the filing of the suit, the San Rafael City Council, in
a controversy that engulfed the Terra Linda neighborhood for some
time, banned the construction of second stories on all Eichler and
Alliance homes there. The ruling does not apply to homes that already
have second stories. Simon's and Farrell's home is an Alliance.

The neighbor, Mary Ann Quirke, was not in the court- room when her
attorney, Robert Levy, made closing arguments yesterday.

Vincent DeMartini, who represented Simon and Farrell, said the
circumstances of the case were unfortunate because Quirke would
clearly be unhappy about the results of the case. His clients, he
said, were happy.

"I took the position from the beginning the worst could happen,"
Simon said outside court.

In her lawsuit, Quirke claimed that the second-story addition to the
home in a predominantly single-story community violated her privacy
and a 50-year-old Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions agreement,
or CC&Rs, limiting the height of homes in the subdivision.

In his ruling, Sutro said none of the parties involved were aware of
the CC&Rs until after Simon and Farrell began the expansion of their
home at 531 Wisteria Way. He said he believed the couple when they
testified separately that they were not aware of the CC&Rs in 1999
when they signed the legal documents entitling them to their home.

"To all outward appearances as far as anybody knew ... they had never
been enforced," Sutro said. "No one was paying much attention to the
CC&Rs and there has been no enforcement."

Sutro affirmed that Simon and Farrell followed all of the appropriate
procedures when they applied to the city of San Rafael and were
granted permission to add on to their home.

Quirke had said she was taken by surprise after buying her home in
the summer of 2002, because she had not been notified by the city or
the seller of the project. She said she learned of it only when
demolition of existing portions of the home began last June.

Quirke said she complained to Simon and Farrell several times before
hiring her attorney, who sent a letter and a copy of the CC&Rs to the

"Until they faced an irate neighbor, they had no idea they had done
something wrong," Sutro said.

The couple made a reasonable and justifiable decision to continue
with the work on their home even after Quirke tried unsuccessfully to
obtain a temporary restraining order to stop the construction, he

"The defendants had no other reasonable choice but to complete the
construction once it began," Sutro said, noting the house was
vulnerable to weather and intruders in its unfinished state.

In his arguments on behalf of Quirke, Levy said he did not believe
the couple had signed closing documents without being aware of the
CC&Rs, and did not think they should have continued with the project
knowing that their neighbor felt that her living space was intruded

Referring to a photograph the DeMartini had submitted as evidence,
Levy told the judge: "This picture depicts the so-called 'me
generation'. They want you to look at that picture and wonder 'How
can I make them tear down this beautiful home?'"

DeMartini told the judge there were no bad people in this
dispute. "The parties were unaware of the CC&Rs and the potential
impacts until after the construction was begun," DeMartini said in
his closing argument.

"They had absolutely no reason to believe a second story was not a
reasonable alternative."

A second civil lawsuit similarly objecting to a second-story addition
on a nearby property on Las Raposas is pending.

The San Rafael City Council, in response to the controversy, banned
second-story additions on all Eichler and Alliance homes - the single-
story structures that created housing for more than 1,200 families in
Terra Linda in the years following World War II.

Eighteen of the homes have since been modified to exceed the height
limits of the CC&Rs that were adopted when the subdivisions were

Contact Nancy Isles Nation via e-mail at civiccenter@n...

Copyright and permissions,1413,234%257E24407%257E2073067,00.html

(I believe that the link is no longer valid)

Joined: Mar 20 2003

I got this wonderful email from who I would guess owns the lovely home in question:

From: "t j" < >
Date: Fri Aug 6, 2004 10:37:39 PM US/Pacific
Subject: re: Anyone see Curb Appeal on HGTV?

Your reply shows that you are a total idiot with a limited vocabulary. A mind is a terrible thing to waste but in your case, no loss. If you do own an Eichler, you give Eichler owners a bad name. In the future, keep your thoughts locked in that non-existent brain of yours.

I see this person had the guts to email me directly, rather than communicate his/her thoughts in the open, on the bboard. I thought Eichler owners were open minded. :wink:

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