1903 W. Idaho St. 

1,019 sq.ft., 2 bedrooms, 1 bath, garage

Built: 1936


Selling Agent: Scott Swan, Windermere Re Capital Group

T:381.8000 C:861.0532

This little house sits in an up-and-coming neighborhood sandwiched between Fairview and State streets. The desirability of the neighborhood, proximity to the downtown and primarily older stock of houses are ideal for buyers who want to pick up something cheap, perform some quick cosmetic adjustments and turn it around for a nice profit and those buyers looking to stay in the 'hood and fix up the property over time. I am not sure where this house fits into the mix. Back in 2003, it was remodeled and between 2002-2003, the assessed value doubled. It was then sold to the current owner who also did some minor work. Now it is back on the market, and for the square footage, it ain't cheap.

The house is Spanish Eclectic/Mission style, which is a unique style in the neighborhood and Boise. I really like seeing these spread within the plethora of cottages and bungalows because they are such a welcoming contrast. The house is simple in massing and detail, with a low slope roof tucked behind parapeted stucco walls painted tan. Low wing walls accentuate the asymmetry of the façade and help provide this tiny house with a much bigger street presence. The coping cap, roof drains and entry door are painted black. The simple black and tan theme is interrupted with the intrusion of the recently added vinyl windows. White and void of any trim, these windows detract aesthetically from the character of the house.

The total square footage is divided between two floors-the main level is 650 square feet with the remaining 350+ square feet in the basement. The main level has a lot going on in such a small footprint-kitchen, two bedrooms, one bath, living area and dining space. Hardwood floors and stained woodwork run throughout the spaces. The bedrooms are quite small and have direct access to the bathroom. The kitchen has stained wood cabinets and brown tiled counter tops and island.

The lower level/basement is used for utility type functions: washer, dryer, furnace and storage.

A concrete pad out the back door overlooks the back yard, which is primarily grass with some minor landscaping. The garage is long and linear and can easily accommodate one or two cars, although tandem parking would be required.

Pros: The neighborhood-it's diverse, it's not the North End (yet) so it is still affordable (although I think this house is overpriced). Some might find The Torch Lounge to the south bothersome or possibly a bonus. The architectural style is great. The house is in good shape inside and out. If someone was so inclined and brave enough to put some money into it-demo out the bad and perhaps put in a small addition-the place could be really functional and hip.

Cons: Reconciling the cost with the square footage. I am not sure what the original house looked like prior to the 2003 remodel. It has all room names and spaces associated with a house but they are configured such that the house lacks functionality. For example, the small space between the end of the kitchen counter and wall-I have no idea what one could do in that space other than just stand there. With such a small footprint every inch wants to be utilized for maximum use, and the 2003 remodel did not respond to that. Perhaps the next owner will.

"Home Sweet Home" features local, unique, historically or architecturally significant houses for sale. To suggest a house to be featured e-mail editor@boiseweekly.com.

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