Home Sweet Homes: Popping the Top Downtown

The perfect home is all about who lives in it. Meet a local family who popped the top to renovate their downtown home.

A modern farmhouse family home near downtown Colorado Springs by Bob and Hannah Parsons
The modern farmhouse family home near downtown Colorado Springs by Bob and Hannah Parsons. Photo by James Harris Photography

She said, “We haven’t found the downtown home we want after two years of looking. Let’s pop the top on the rental property.” He said, a little more reluctantly, “If we’re going to take on a project, it might as well be this one.” So Hannah and Bob Parsons transformed their 1920s Craftsman bungalow on North Wahsatch Avenue into their modern farmhouse family home.

Hannah Parsons
CEO of Technology Accelerator

Bob Parsons
General Contractor

The Home

3,000 square feet, on the border of Old North End and Patty Jewett
5 bedrooms, 4 baths, room for 2 teenagers

The Parsons are no strangers to old homes or renovation. As long-time downtown dwellers and with his contracting career, they had done extensive remodeling before, but not quite to this level. She says they really didn’t want to do a major renovation again. But with their family life rooted downtown, leaving the area wasn’t an option. When tenants moved out of their rental, they came to a realization: “Since we can’t find the perfect house anyway, let’s go all in and put together all the things we’ve always wanted and build that.”

Hannah and Bob Parsons.
Photo by James Harris Photography

Gone are the tiny closets, drafty windows and walled-off layout. In their place are an open floor plan on the main level, living space for four upstairs and covered patio for outdoor living and entertaining. “That’s my single favorite feature: You can come in the front door and see out the back door,” Hannah says.

A 1920s home renovated for a modern farmhouse family home.
Photo by James Harris Photography

Still, they were able to maintain some old charm, such as the original fireplace, hardwood floors, high ceilings—and downtown walkability. The Shooks Run/Legacy Loop Trail, Good Neighbors Meeting House, Bonn Shopping Center, Lincoln Center and the heart of downtown are all accessible on foot.

“If you can’t afford $700,000-plus in the Old North End—I think this a trend you’re going to see a lot more of,” Hannah says. “People will buy something affordable, then build it up the way they want it.”

A 1920s home renovated to a modern farmhouse family home
Photo by James Harris Photography

Read More Home Sweet Homes

The perfect home is all about who lives in it. Meet locals at different life stages—from first-time buyers to downsize—and step inside their just-right homes.

The First-Time Home Buyers

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