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Old-house Woes
Brightly painted Victorian homes in San Francisco

Brightly painted Victorian homes line the streets in San Francisco. They're charming, but the floor plans can be impractical for modern living.

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It's like a love affair gone sour. The oak paneling used to make your heart skip a beat, but now the house feels dark and gloomy. The turrets, alcoves, and odd-shaped rooms had seemed so inviting, but now you can't figure out where to put the furniture. After a few years of living in a Victorian home, you find yourself yearning for big bathrooms, an open floor plan and - most of all - closets.

Older homes may be beautiful, but they aren't designed for modern living. The floor plan of a Victorian house can seem cluttered and convoluted. Instead of open spaces, you may find a series of small rooms connected by a maze of hallways and doors.

And then there's the bathroom. Although indoor plumbing was available at the turn of the century, the bathrooms (called water closets in Victorian days) were usually cramped by today's standards.

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