Vaulted feeling: Storage aplenty in Fry's Spring

ADDRESS: 109 Harris Road

ASKING: $299,000

SIZE: 2,900 fin. sq. ft.



CURB APPEAL: 5 of 10

LISTED BY: Amy Bishop Home Sell Realty 978-7357, 882-4627

It's a rare family these days that hasn't accumulated mountains of stuff. Blame it on our consumer culture, blame it on yard sales, hobbies, your kids, or the pack-rat you married– whatever the excuse, cupboards, closets, basements, outbuildings, and shelving are all required amenities in homes today.

For folks who grew up believing organization means "a place for everything, and everything in its place," this house at 109 Harris Road, just inside the city's southern limits, could be a good match. The rooms themselves are not overly large, but there are a lot of them.

As the agent so aptly claims, this offering is no "drive-by." The layout of the 1952 ranch requires a look around inside for all its storage potential to be fully appreciated.

For starters, what seems unimaginable from the curb is that there are five legitimate bedrooms: three along the rear on the main floor and two more below. Each has its own closet, and the master bedroom even offers his-and-hers hanging closets behind louvered doors, plus a third partial walk-in. The smallest of the five bedrooms is upstairs, and while it's currently home-base for a young child, it's situated in such a way that one can easily imagine it becoming a study or home office.

If your boxes are stuffed with kitchen paraphernalia, you can unpack them here. Thanks to a handyman family member, the kitchen has been recently remodeled and the walls filled with custom white cabinets. (The kitchen appliances all convey, but not the washer, dryer, and a second fridge, all downstairs.)

Built-in bookshelves on either side of the working fireplace in the living room offer relief for a bookworm's stash, and a standard-sized coat closet and linen closet provide appropriate locations for those obvious items. A sunroom with southern facing windows is long enough to take a serious row of plant stands, or, with a second entrance direct from the driveway, it could become an extended mudroom, too.

It's the kids who have all the junk, you say? Well, a large carpeted basement area makes a family room well-suited for Romper Room toys and games, or could become an older teen's (or dad's?) electronic games, TV and stereo-equipped hide-away.

Speaking of older kids– maybe even grown children still living at home– one of the two downstairs bedrooms has its own separate walk-out access to the back yard and driveway that could provide an independent way to come and go. The other downstairs bedroom is a particularly cozy place. Warm, brown, narrow-slat wood paneling– not the cheap sheet variety, but the real McCoy– lines this hideaway, again suggesting a room suitable for a teen wanting some privacy from the rest of the family or guests who don't want to be in the thick of activity.

Unfortunately, the two full baths in this house are both upstairs, leaving inhabitants below out of luck. Yet given nearby washer-dryer hookups, a laundry tub, and the hot water heater, a solution for this oversight could be close at hand.

Another potential drawback, but one more that's fixable: bold wallpaper patterns in the kitchen and bathrooms combined with new vinyl flooring in those rooms may not be every buyer's first choice. The well-cared-for hardwood floors throughout the rest of the upper floor, however, are sure to please.

But back to storage. Out back, a sizeable (500 square feet) workshop sits ready to accommodate about any craft or collecting habit imaginable. The rest of the back yard is grassy and fenced, in case it's animals that need storing.

As for location, Harris Road is a busy street, but there's on-street parking in addition to an asphalted driveway wide enough to allow two cars abreast and easily two more (or boats, or trailers) behind them. The No. 4 bus route stops along Harris, providing another way to get around town.

And the price? Well, sticker shock having set in some time ago for prospective city home buyers, this one's probably fair game; if a two-bedroom house can sell for $150K, why wouldn't a five-bedroom go for twice that much?