Make Myself at Home: Happily Ever After in This Westside Cottage

Westside Cottage Makes a Happy New Home

1023 West Valerio Street
Kristin Renee Photographer

Address: 1023 West Valerio Street

Status: Not for Sale

Price: Listing price was $769,000

When I heard that my friend Dan had just bought a house, I congratulated him — of course — and then I immediately asked if I could come over to visit, and possibly write about, his new home. He agreed wholeheartedly. As we were scheduling a time to meet, he admitted, “Today’s a little hectic, because I’m asking my girlfriend to marry me this evening.”

Addie Jennings and Dan Crawford
Sarah Sinclair Photos

Fortunately, the proposal went off without a hitch, and she said yes. So my appointment to visit meant getting not only to see the new house but also to meet Addie, Dan’s girlfriend turned fiancée. My visit included congratulations on their brand-new home and also on their engagement.

Dan is a Realtor, and Addie is a veterinarian, so strolling through their new home with their dog and cat happily following us around felt like I was seeing different aspects of their lives come together. The house is a two-bedroom, one-bath Spanish-style cottage on Santa Barbara’s Westside. With a red-tile roof and a white stucco exterior, it sits happily on a large corner lot across from Harding School. A low brick wall curves around the edge of the front yard, with a pathway leading past a gracious, old oak tree with two steps up to the front porch. Just big enough for a sweet bench and a few potted plants, the porch is the perfect introduction to the house, enclosed by a short white wall that curves up to form the outline of the chimney, hinting at a fireplace within.

The front door opens into the living room, where big windows let in the light and show off the gleaming hardwood floors. The promised fireplace on the front wall is surrounded by a subtle white brick frame and graced with an inset niche above, in a charming contrast to a typical fireplace mantel. The house was built in 1930, and vintage details like this one remain.

From the entry, a hallway to the right leads to both bedrooms and the bathroom. A laundry room is tucked behind the master bedroom, with an entrance out to the garage beyond. Back through the living room, I am drawn to the kitchen that lies at the back of the house and is sure to be the heart of this home.

Living room at 1023 West Valerio Street
Kristin Renee Photography

They’ve only been in the house for a few weeks, and yet the kitchen has already undergone an amazing transformation. They removed sets of upper cabinets in favor of open wooden shelves that serve the same function but lend a stylish look and feel. An island in the middle of the room houses the oven and serves as both a dining surface and prep space. A hood that was originally above the stove was removed in favor of a down-facing vent. That change makes the whole room — and hence the whole house — feel larger. Quartz countertops and new stainless-steel appliances complete the bright, open look.

Another area that has already received a major facelift at Dan and Addie’s new home is outside the house. From the kitchen, a side door leads to an intimate outdoor dining area. A huge persimmon tree holds lanterns in its branches and provides shade over a big dining table and a barbecue. An exterior wall has been painted and inset with redwood fencing. It’s a decorative backdrop that’s just solid enough for privacy but still lets the ambience of the neighborhood filter in.

Kitchen at 1023 West Valerio Street
Kristin Renee Photography

The rest of the backyard contains a variety of fruit trees and plenty of space to be flexible for the future. As we moved into the front yard and lingered over our goodbyes, a neighbor walked by and offered advice on pruning their apple tree. A few minutes later, another stopped to introduce herself and her dog.

Dan and Addie certainly aren’t going to lack for company in their new home. The neighborhood feels destined to foster plenty of camaraderie, helping to ensure that they’ll live happily ever after in their cozy new home.

1023 West Valerio Street is not for sale and likely won’t be for a very long time. Addie Jennings is an emergency veterinarian at Advanced Veterinary Specialists in Santa Barbara. Dan Crawford is a Realtor with Calcagno & Hamilton at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties. Reach Dan at (805) 886-5764 or


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