There’s something special about a craftsman bungalow. Maybe it’s the intricate woodwork, the exposed rafter tails, the iconic dormers, or simply the high-quality design that makes them so popular. Even with so many other styles of home available, craftsman bungalows continue to be a favorite with homeowners. While some parts of the country have more craftsman homes than others, there are plenty throughout the Denver metro in neighborhoods like Washington Park, Park Hill, Sloan’s Lake, and Whittier. Most craftsman bungalows are either one-story or one-and-a-half-story homes. While this makes these homes quaint, our modern lifestyles often demand more space. The good news is that there are several different ways to get the extra space you need. One option is to buy a new home. But, if you love your neighborhood, a move might not be the right decision. This is where an addition could be helpful. But depending on your home’s foundation, or the size of your lot, expanding up is the best way to find more space.  In such cases, it’s worth considering adding a second story to a craftsman bungalow. 

Benefits of adding a second story to a craftsman bungalow 

Adding a second story (or pop-top) can save you the headache of relocating and lets you stay in your same neighborhood and school district. But, that’s just the tip of the iceberg. 

Popping the top of your craftsman bungalow allows for complete customization. With the extra space, you can change your existing layout and get the home of your dreams. You could move all of the bedrooms upstairs or opt to modernize your home with an open floor plan. Building your home up will also give you a height advantage that simply isn’t possible with the traditional craftsman bungalow, letting you wake up to an even better view of the mountains. 

Having more space can have a major impact on the quality of your life. You’ll also get the added bonus that the additional square footage that you get when you build a second story to your home will increase the overall value of your home. 

In fact, you may find that adding a second story to a craftsman bungalow is more cost-effective than building a traditional addition onto the side of your home. Why? Because many times there’s no need to dig a foundation or do excavation work. This also means that you’ll get to keep all your backyard space for summer barbeques. 

Things to Consider When Adding a Second Story to a Craftsman Bungalow 

Before you decide to add a second story to a craftsman bungalow, here are six things to consider.


  1. Foundation Requirements. Adding a second story generally doesn’t require excavation, but it does need a strong, sturdy foundation. Most Denver craftsman bungalows have load-bearing brick walls on a pore foundation which are great for single-story homes. But, they aren’t always a good candidate for adding a second story. If this is the case, you may be able to reinforce your walls or there’s always the option to pour a new foundation.  
  2. Zoning. Confirm that the zoning lot where your home is located lets you add a second story to your home. If there are limitations on pop-top additions, then you’ll want to know that upfront before investing more time or money into the project. 
  3. Alternate Housing. If you are adding a complete second story then your entire roof will need to be removed, requiring you to find alternate housing during construction. If you are simply looking to add an additional bedroom or office on the second floor, it may be possible to consolidate to one area of your home during the build.  
  4. Timeline. Adding a second story to a craftsman bungalow is a major construction project that can be time-intensive. Make sure to plan your timeline accordingly. 
  5. Impact on the Neighbors. When you build up your home you’ll likely have an impact on your neighbors. Not only will they have to deal with the noise during the construction process, but your addition may also change or even block their view. Your newly designed home could also affect the amount of sunlight they get in their home and yard, etc.  
  6. Future Plans. Most homeowners that build up do so because they love their home and want the space. But, if you are planning on selling your home in the next few years, you may not see a large return on your investment. Always be sure to compare the projected value of your home after your remodel to other homes in the area, keeping in mind any moves, to maximize your return. 

Factor Design Build 

When it comes to building up your bungalow, you want to work with a team of experts. Factor Design Build specializes in adding a second story to craftsman bungalows. Our Denver team of amazing architects, designers, and builders are here to help facilitate the entire process both on time and on budget. They will work hand-in-hand with you to customize your space to make it exactly what you need. Let us help you reimagine your home as a space that works to support you and your family for years to come.