$1.2 Million Homes in California – The New York Times

Hardwood Flooring

In the early 1880s, this lot was the home of the First Congregational Church of Redlands, a city in San Bernardino County about 65 miles east of Los Angeles. In 1899, the church building was sold to Harry Gregory, a local businessman who stripped it down to the foundation and rebuilt it as the house that stands today. Wood and finishes from the church were salvaged and used in the construction of the home, one of a number of Victorian-era houses in Redlands.

The property is a 10-minute walk from the University of Redlands, a private liberal arts school with about 5,000 students. Downtown San Bernardino is 15 minutes away by car.

Size: 3,200 square feet

Price per square foot: $375

Indoors: A winding driveway leads from the street to the front entrance of this house, which is surrounded on three sides by a wraparound porch.

Just inside the front door is a vestibule with three large windows that look out onto the front porch. To the right is a formal living room, with a fireplace and another big window.

Beyond the entry is a hallway that leads to a larger family room, with its own fireplace and decorative wainscoting, and a door that connects to the kitchen. A formal dining room with access to the rear porch is connected to the kitchen and the family room. To the left of the kitchen is a sunny office nook with access to a half bathroom.

Hardwood flooring runs throughout the main level, and several of the doors have their original crystal knobs.

From the back of the house, stairs lead to the second level, which has four bedrooms. At the far end of the hallway is a master bedroom with an en suite bathroom that includes a French soaking tub. Two other bedrooms are big enough to hold a queen-size bed, while a third is cozier, with sloped ceilings.

Outdoor space: The property’s grounds are extensive. In front of the house is an wide lawn; the paved driveway continues along the left side of the home and offers as a place to park. The backyard has a patio that is partially paved in brick and partially in concrete. A patch of lawn separates the main patio area from a small fountain. The property is planted with a number of fruit trees, including avocado, persimmon, blood orange, tangerine, nectarine and Meyer lemon.

Taxes: $15,227 (estimated)

Contact: Perrie Mundy, Berkshire Hathaway, 909-809-8644; perriemundy.com


In the postwar San Fernando Valley, William Mellenthin, a designer and contractor, was known for building high-quality ranch houses accented with birdhouses and cupolas, diamond-paned windows and two-sided brick fireplaces, in a style referred to as “storybook ranch.” This home built by Mr. Mellenthin has retained those details, despite extensive upgrades. It is in a part of the Sherman Oaks neighborhood of Los Angeles known as Hidden Woods, developed by Mr. Mellenthin in the late 1940s; the area includes a number of dead-end streets and cul-de-sacs as a bonus for families with young children.

An entrance to the 101 freeway is a five-minute drive; downtown Los Angeles is about half an hour away. The house is 10 minutes away from the shopping and dining on Ventura Boulevard, and about 25 minutes from Beverly Hills and the Westside of Los Angeles.

Size: 1,978 square feet

Price per square foot: $606

Indoors: The owner did considerable work to modernize the property, including upgrading the HVAC, electrical and plumbing systems. Most of the windows — except for Mr. Mellenthin’s signature diamond-paned ones — have been replaced, and the interior and exterior were recently painted.

Beyond the small entry are two formal spaces: to the right, a living room with one side of the home’s double-sided fireplace; to the left, a dining room that is open to the kitchen and family room.

In the kitchen, the owner installed new cabinets, quartz counters and a skylight. An island with additional space for dining divides the kitchen from the family room, where the other half of the double-sided fireplace is set in a wall of white-painted brick. Sliding-glass doors lead from this space into the backyard.

Beyond the family room is the renovated master suite, where the owner added a walk-in closet and reconfigured the en suite bathroom. The master bedroom has its own access to the backyard through sliding-glass doors, and the master bathroom has a large walk-in shower lined with slate tile.

A hallway along the right side of the house connects the living room to two guest rooms, one of which overlooks the street and is large enough for a king-size bed. These bedrooms share a bathroom with a combination bathtub and shower.

Outdoor space: A paved patio outside the family room is large enough for a barbecue; the grassy backyard beyond has several original trees. A detached garage holds two cars and could be converted into additional living space.

Taxes: $15,228 (estimated)

Contact: Claudia Flores, Keller Williams Beverly Hills, 424-334-9291; claudiafloresproperties.com

Bankers Hill, a San Diego neighborhood named for the professionals who called it home during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, is a mix of Victorian houses — many converted into hotel or commercial spaces — and new construction like this townhouse.

The home is a five-minute walk from the west side of Balboa Park, the city’s main green space and the site of cultural institutions like the San Diego Museum of Art and the Natural History Museum. San Diego International Airport is a 10-minute drive; the campuses of the University of California San Diego and San Diego State University are about 20 minutes away by car.

Size: 1,700 square feet

Price per square foot: $697

Indoors: From the street, a short flight of stairs leads to the main living floor, which is laid out in an open-plan style.

Just inside the front door is a seating area that faces floor-to-ceiling sliding-glass doors out to a small balcony. Gray-tiled floors extend to the dining area, which flows into an open kitchen. An island with quartz counters provides an additional work space in the kitchen and another seating area. Stainless steel Bosch appliances and custom-designed cabinets line the far wall.

To the right of the great room is a set of stairs up to the master-suite level. On one wall of the master bedroom, floor-to-ceiling glass doors slide open to a private balcony. The large master bathroom includes a double vanity, a glass-walled walk-in shower and a free-standing soaking tub.

A garage on the ground level offers direct entry to the home. A guest room and a full bathroom are also on this level.

Outdoor space: Both the main level and the master-suite level have balconies with room for seating. A 500-square-foot roof deck is carpeted in artificial grass and looks toward the downtown San Diego skyline. The attached garage holds two cars.

Taxes: $12,443 (estimated), plus a $203 monthly homeowner association fee

Contact: Janet Douglas, Windermere Homes & Estates, 619-540-5891; windermere.com

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