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Karl Freund calls himself a “real estate entrepreneur.”  He operates a thriving real estate business: Kenneth James.  He has also owned a mortgage company and a title company.

But his passion is renovating houses.

Karl has renovated three homes in Scottsdale Estates, one of the many Hallcraft Home neighborhoods in Scottsdale.  His latest renovation was built in 1958.

John Hall swooped into Scottsdale in the 1950’s and was in the right place at the right time.  Dairy and cotton farming were winding down. The post World War II population surge was starting, so people needed places to live.  It was the beginning of the city’s population and housing boom.

The typical Hallcraft ranch-style home in Scottsdale Estates sold for $11,000.  Small and modest by today’s standards, there were only a few floor plans so homes could be erected quickly. One of the features that distinguished many of the Hallcraft homes from other neighborhoods was their brick facades.

“When I walk into a house, I know right away if I’m going to buy it,” Karl explains. “It then takes me about an hour to visualize what I need to do for the end user.”

To accommodate Karl’s vision, the 1,502-square-foot house had to be gutted.  But before the rooms could be reconfigured, the electrical and plumbing systems had to be replaced.  The brick facing on the front of the house had been painted over, so Karl’s crew sandblasted to give it a distressed look.

Karl often goes hands-on with his renovations projects, which is what he has hurriedly done in order to get his Hallcraft gem ready for the home tour. He didn’t alter the house’s footprint – and that makes it the smallest house on the tour.

Through his latest labor of love in Scottsdale Estates, Karl Freund has proved a home doesn’t have to be renovated into something larger when the space is used wisely.

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