Updating 1970s houses

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“The split originally was a way to build on a sloping site, but the interior visual connections it created were so popular it became a part of a new style,” says architect Stuart Cohen of Stuart Cohen & Julie Hacker Architects in Evanston, Ill., and co-author of Acanthus Press, 2008). Split-levels looked more substantial yet their quasi-stacked designs were still compact and could be affordably built on smaller lots.

In Pecorin’s Greenwich, Conn., community where prices average .3 million, a split was recently on the market for 9,000.As with any home, you can get the best response from buyers if sellers update appliances, wiring, plumbing, and paint, says West.When marketing the home, Pecorin says it’s smart to emphasize the split’s open floor plan, which many younger home owners like because it’s great for entertaining.As houses grew grander in the 1980s, 1990s, and beyond, the modest split, often with 8-foot-high ceilings and small closets, lost cachet.Today, it’s a design rarely requested by home owners, says Cohen.

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