The Charleston Coast From Our View...
If you’re a long-time Charlestonian, chances are you’ve lived in a Charleston single house at some point in your life. Many visitors have come away remembering this iconic Charleston architecture. Charleston singles are, after all, common throughout the peninsula and beyond. From the mansions South of Broad to modest neighborhoods extending past the crosstown, the Charleston single is part of the city’s makeup and charm.
So what makes up a Charleston single house? Several things, like its long, narrow shape, distinguish the style from others, while the somewhat private porch is often the most favored feature of all. Of course, there’s rhyme and reason to its design, mainly relating to local conditions — namely the city’s hot and humid summers. Yes, even centuries ago, Charleston was known for being muggy on summer days and sultry in the evenings!
Here are a few of the features you’ll find in a Charleston single house and reasons behind their particular design:
1. Long, narrow shape
In order to build a single house, you need only a long, narrow lot, which is how the city was laid out in its early days. The tall, slender homes are typically placed quite closely to the neighboring home, perhaps too close for comfort in some cases. The single house has a narrow side, with the long side of the house – the traditional “front” – being perpendicular to the street. The plain, short facade is what faces the street.
While the house is long and narrow, it is also only one room wide, when viewed from the street — which gives the single house its name! But what the home lacks in width it makes up for in length and height. As mentioned before, the house is quite long, while many Charleston single houses are also several tiers high.
3. The Front Door
What may appear to be a front door — the one facing the street — is only an entrance to the private porch. The actual front door is down the middle of the porch. This was intended to give more privacy to the homeowners during the more modest Victorian period.
4. Interior Layout
Though the architectural form of the single house comes in everything from Federal to Victorian styles, the most consistent feature will always be its interior layout. A front door along the long side of the house leads you into a foyer and stairwell, and there’s a room to the left, usually a bedroom, and to the right — which normally serves as the living room, with the kitchen being on the other side of the living room — an open archway separating the two. The same floor plan is generally repeated upstairs.
Single houses have side porches — oops, pardon, I mean piazzas. Accessible via the aforementioned door on the street-side of the house, the piazza is strategically placed on the long side of the house to increase the odds of catching a cool breeze— definitely a factor to consider in a city that gets so hot and muggy during summers. They are also a pretty sweet spot to enjoy a cup of tea or an afternoon snooze!
If you are looking for a Charleston single to call your own, stop by The Real Estate Studio where our experienced, professional agents are always here to answer questions or show property.
The Spring market is starting early in 2017! Here are three of our new listings on Sullivans Island that will not disappoint. If you are looking for the perfect coastal property, you will want to be sure to check these out.
This stunning, newer construction home was completed in 2015 by Rhodes Residential Builders. The home features an open floor plan and a gourmet kitchen. This 3,450 sq. ft., 4 bedroom, 4.5 bath home will exceed your expectations. First floor features a custom gourmet kitchen, great room with gas fireplace and glassed dining room area overlooking the pool. The large master suite with beamed cathedral ceiling and designer bathroom is also on this level. The second level consists of 3 large bedrooms, each with their own private bathroom. The ground level has a two car garage and ground level pool with additional entertaining space under the house. This home is absolutely beautiful and move in ready!
This wonderful third row home is on a street-to-street 1/2 acre lot just steps to the beach access at Station 26. The home was recently remodeled and shows beautifully. The first floor consists of a large eat-in-kitchen with breakfast area, separate dining area and great room. The master bedroom suite and three additional bedrooms are located on the second level as well as a small office area. There is plenty of room for a large pool and additional square footage if desired.
This spectacular home has 3 levels of living space and is close to the beach access at Station 29. This home is perfect for entertaining with the large first level great room with fireplace and sunroom leading out to the back deck and porch that overlooks a gorgeous pool. The first floor also includes the master suite with its own private office and an additional guest suite that was added in 2012. The second level has three additional bedrooms that share a large bathroom that could be easily converted into 2 bathrooms. There is also a small TV/media room that opens up to a second story porch. The ground level entertaining space that flows just off the pool consists of a new 4-person hot tub, large sitting area, and bar with refrigerators, sink, and mounted TV. This home was listed and under contract in less than a week!
If you have questions about these properties contact listing agent, and Sullivans Ilans expert, Tim Reese. Not quite what you are looking for? No problem, drop by or contact our Isle of Palms Office to speak with one of our professional, experienced real estate agents.