Leafing through the real estate section on Saturday was a total bore. All the new construction is located in a subdivision named after the desert Southwest, or French or Italian countryside, and oddly enough, the houses all look the same. So I looked to getting out of town, in hopes of finding a house, an area, that had not been stamped the next "Villa de Formaggio." I thought I found it in Emmett, but driving in to town on Highway 44, it was clear that this area had been discovered also and it was only a matter of time before the homogenization would occur.
Luckily, I found a house located in Emmett proper, a great old brick structure located in what once was probably a fairly well-to-do neighborhood. But times have changed, and what was once well-to-do is now modest and middle class. According to the selling agent, this house was owned/built by a doctor who probably received patients at the house. Some of this is fairly apparent in the overall layout of the house, as it's a bit compartmentalized.
This red brick, white trim, single-story house is in great condition. At some point, a small covered entry was added on, which adds a bit of character with the patterned glass and stained wood cladding. The front door opens into a modestly sized living room that is pretty plain with brown carpet and white walls, but there is a pellet stove with a brick mantle providing some interest to the room. The dining area is open to the living room and has direct access to the kitchen. The kitchen is well sized with plenty of storage space in the dark brown stained cabinets.
Through the dining area sits what is now the billiard room with direct access to the back patio, some nice built-ins and great old aluminum windows. A unique room in the house is the bomb shelter, complete with lead-lined doors, a water tank and ample storage. It even looks like there was plumbing at one timejust in case. There are a bunch of secret hatches throughout the house, some under stairs and in the wall. I didn't dare investigate.
There are two bathrooms, each of which appears to have the original plastic laminate countertop, sink and vanity with great patterning and detailing.
There is a mix of smaller rooms. Some of them clearly appear to function as bedrooms and others as officesprobably because it was the doc's shop. There are some original built-ins that could have been used by the children in the house for schoolwork and such.
A couple of storage buildings that are probably original are in the backyard. The area is fenced in both wood and chain link. There is a huge shade tree that will provide excellent shade from the summer sun. The front yard is well landscaped and has a mix of trees, shrubs and lawn.
PROS: Emmett was not quite the trek I thought it would be, although it might be different on a weekday. The house is located in an older, established neighborhood, close to schools and to the downtown (Emmett has a large stock of old buildings in its downtown). The house is in good condition and has a lot of room for the price. That bomb shelter might make a great dark room. Emmett is not in Ada Countywhew! That will give you some tax relief, but I hear water is not cheap.
CONS: It does need some work on the interior. I think I counted seven different flooring types and all are in pretty sad shape. It would be interesting to see what lies underneath. The house has lots of little spaces. I am still not sold on commuting to and fro. It seems like a huge waste of time, but with the housing prices coupled with the fact that people want a kabillion square feet are pushing folks out of Boise and in to Saguaro Canyon, Glacier Springs, Corrente Bello and beyond. Get ready Emmett!