Take a look around their small house, a “junior five” near San Francisco (a home that has an entry stairway that starts at garage level and leads up to five rooms), from the upstairs bedroom to the garage. [The actual home shown in the color photos below was in San Bruno, just south of SF.]
How much have property values changed? In 1940 and 1941, these houses were selling for between $5,000 and $5,350 — when you account for inflation, that’s right around $100,000 in today’s dollars.
Of course, that’s not how real estate really works. So I looked it up, and as of 2018, the home seen in the newspaper photo below was apparently worth a cool $1.2 million in the hot San Francisco housing market.
The new Junior Five homes
As the newest development in home construction, the Associated Realty Company and J. Arvid Johnson & Son, builders, today are opening for public inspection of the trim Junior Five “Homemaker’s Home” at 4231 Pacheco Street.
It has been furnished by R. Knight & Sons.
Built for “practical people who count their pennies,” this attractive two-bedroom home rises in the second unit of a fast-growing area near the beach.
“Since introducing the Junior Five several months ago,” said Bert Conroy of the realty firm, “we have encountered considerable difficulty in building homes fast enough to undertake a public showing. This is the first time that we have had a variety of this new type of home available for inspection.”
A Junior Five home reduces the area devoted to the preparation and serving of food with the use of a dinette in lieu of a dining room. The saving in space, it is added, means savings in price.
It has a spacious living room with fireplace, large windows and various other popular features.
From The San Francisco Examiner (San Francisco, California) – October 5, 1940
A 1950s home tour: The living room
Featuring a television set!
A 1950s home tour: The kitchen & dining area
A 1950s home tour: The bedroom
With a pink bedspread and a doll wearing cream satin. (The walls were solid color — the photograph has age spots.)
A 1950s home tour: The washing machine
This laundry area — featuring a Kenmore washer — was apparently connected to the garage or was on the basement level.
A 1950s home tour: The garage
The single-car garage features a Nash Metropolitan car in red and white, with a license registration year of 1956.