What do Mad Men, The Playboy Club and Pan Am have to do with Real Estate?

Managing Real Estate Broker with Riley Jackson Real Estate Inc.

These new TV shows, set in the 1960s area, are rekindling the interest for a sleek mid-century modern look for interior decor items, furniture and homes. In other words: the Brady Bunch house is back in style.


Mid-century modern style architecture is most often found in buildings constructed between the mid-1950s through the late 1960s. Its main characteristics are low-pitched and varying roof lines, open floor plans, massive stone or brick fireplaces, cathedral ceilings with exposed wood beams and large windows. Other common features are pony walls (walls that don't extend to the ceiling), clerestory windows (set high in the wall), interior stone planter boxes, sunken living rooms and patios or court yards.

I have had increased demand for these type of homes from some of my home buyers. The Olympia area has a couple of neighborhoods that are almost exclusively mid-century modern and feature some real architectural gems. One home buyer explained his desire for this style home with the fact that it lends itself to entertaining and the look is sexy. You can't really say that about a lot of other home styles (think Tudor, Colonial or Craftsman). Here are some examples of Olympia's sexy mid-century modern homes currently on the market:

While these homes may evoke Sinatra music and a taste for Martinis,  here are some other things to keep in mind when considering purchasing these types of homes. Since they are around 50 to60 years old, like many other vintage homes, they may contain hazardous building materials such as asbestos or lead based paint. Also, homes with low pitched roofs tend to need more maintenance and have a lower life span.

I would welcome it if home builders would respond to the increased buyer demand and start to build new, energy efficient homes with the modern design features of their vintage mid-century cousins.

Sandy Nelson

Olympia Realtor®, GRI, ASP, SRES, SFR




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Planning a home purchase or the sale of your home will be much more enjoyable when you work with a friendly and knowledgeable professional. I'm dedicated to helping you make informed decisions and providing you with exceptional skill and service.



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Sandy Nelson

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