Starting Fresh on Queen Anne

When building a new house in Seattle be prepared to hurry up and wait. Plan to also make decisions on more minute details than you thought possible.

In 2014, Ashley and Chris Rossman enlisted me to help them find a build-able lot on the top of Queen Anne. They were anticipating that the hunt for the perfect property could take months, if not a year. The Rossman’s lucked out when two properties to their liking came on the market within the first few weeks of searching. They ended up beating out a few other offers and getting the property they wanted the most. All of this was happening as Ashley was in her final week of pregnancy with their second child.

After recovering from the faster than expected purchase of their new property and the birth of their second son, the Rossman’s interviewed architects and builders. They landed on Paramount Builders and architect Lisa Curtis.

During the design phase Ashley appreciated Lisa’s ability to make the process fun, her motherly foresight on how the Rossman’s will use the house as their kids get older, and her ability to make revisions quickly.

For the Rossman’s an unexpected delay came during the six month permit process. The pace of the project after they received permits from the City of Seattle and their construction loan from Homestreet Bank has since hit breakneck speed.

Chris and Ashley love the charm of old homes and knew they wanted a Craftsman style design. The Rossman’s understand the value of building a home from scratch; they can have the classic style they want but with a modern floor plan and luxuries. Their new home will have a traditional entry, a formal living and dining room, but also an oversized eat-in kitchen that is open to a family room. Their lifestyle friendly kitchen and family room will also have an office for Ashley, a walk-in pantry, and a half bath.

Upstairs the master suite and Chris’ office will enjoy northern views towards Fremont and UW. The boys will appreciate the back half of the second level with two bedrooms, their own office, and access to an attic hideout.

The light-filled basement level will have a media room, playroom, Ashley’s craft room, a bedroom, a bathroom, and a second laundry with a dog shower.

Playing up the Transitional style, their home will have wood shiplap siding on the exterior and it will continue through to the interior. Details like dutch doors, box beam ceilings, and Windsor Windows will also add to the grace of the finished home.

From inside the trenches, Ashley’s advice for enjoying the experience of building a home is not to put pressure on yourself to hit a specific deadline for completion. Ashley has also learned her limitations when it comes to making decisions… for her it’s door hinges. Ashley has learned she has no opinion on door hinges.