Address: 8 Deer Hollow Road, San Anselmo
Price: $1.749 million
Features: Remodeled four-bedroom, three-bathroom home in Sleepy Hollow neighborhood of San Anselmo. The home features new electrical, plumbing and drainage systems, as well as marble finishes, dual wings off the great room and a two-car carport.
Open home: Sunday, 1 to 4 p.m.
A modest ranch home went on the market in San Anselmo's Sleepy Hollow neighborhood in July 2012, but languished there. Some investors felt the home wasn't worth remodeling, and families were turned off by its low ceilings, mismatched interior and dated infrastructure.
But journalist-turned-investor Richard Kelly saw a chance for his most ambitious project to date. Kelly, who has been in real estate investment since 2005, has flipped homes for $300,000 and $500,000 in the past, but 8 Deer Hollow Road is the most valuable project he and his contractor, Catalino Alvarez, have undertaken. The result is a four-bedroom, three-bathroom contemporary home with classical design elements.
"Nobody wanted it," Kelly said. "It was a dark, gloomy house and it was a dark, gloomy month (December) when I bought it."
The home now revolves around a great room with a sliding glass door opening to a spacious yard and newly built deck. Paned glass throughout the home has been swapped out with energy efficient picture windows, allowing more light to enter the home and showing off views of the neighborhood and surrounding greenery.
The in-depth process, which involved taking the home to its studs and remastering it, took the better part of 2013.
"This home is basically a gestation," he said. "It took more than eight months."
With the help of architect Matthew Baran, Kelly created an Atomic Ranch-style design, which mixes traditional and modern finishes to craft an elegant and functional space.
The hardwood floorboards spanning the home are various sizes and widths, adding a definitive visual appeal to the rooms. Ann Sacks glass tiles create the backsplash in the kitchen. Having them arranged in a parallel fashion instead of off-center like subway tiles proved to be a challenging process, Kelly said.
"If you're off by even a little bit, the lines become very uneven and it looks awful," he said. "It required precision to pull it off."
The kitchen, designed by Domicile SF, features marble counters and two-tone custom cabinetry. A pendant light by San Francisco designer Pablo Pardo hangs in the eat-in kitchen.
The wraparound backyard backs up to a hillside and includes enough space for a pool. A deck connects to the great room when the sliding glass door is fully recessed, integrating indoors and outdoors.
Off the master suite is a concrete pad which includes a secluded patio. The uncovered space is ideal for stargazing or sunbathing, and gives a sense of separation from the rest of the backyard, Kelly said.
"I imagine it being a place where mom and dad can go and relax when the kids have friends over or are doing their own thing," he said.
The great room serves as the center of the home, with wings on opposite ends housing bedrooms and bathrooms. The master suite wing features an additional bedroom and bathroom, and the other offers two bedrooms and a bathroom.
The design embraces some of the finishes and concepts that upscale homes in San Francisco are featuring. Kelly, a regular attendee at open homes throughout the Bay Area, takes pictures of build-ins and details from various listings to incorporate them into his.
In the case of 8 Deer Hollow, the property fence and entry gate are homages to similar designs he's seen in San Francisco and surrounding areas.
Kelly and Alvarez also tried finishes and combinations they had never used before. In one instance, a shower's walls are constructed from both textured and smooth materials. It lends a relief to the surface while subtly contrasting the space around it.
"I can't say enough about what (Kelly's) done with the place," said Karin Narodny of Marin Real Estate, who is listing the home for $1.749 million. "He's made it into a place that fits the community has put so much care and detail into it."
Listing agent: Karin Narodny, (415) 925-3287, Marin Real Estate, firstname.lastname@example.org