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The five most affordable homes in Magnolia right now

The good news is everything's under $1 million but the bad news is we only go as low as $450K

We cruised the listings and selected five of the most affordable homes in Magnolia. They're actually all under $1 million. Twist?!?

This one is almost small enough to be considered tiny, 816 square feet. The 2 bedroom, 1 bathroom house was built in 1906. There have been improvements like the ubiquitous granite and stainless steel kitchen, and tiled bath; but it hasn't changed much considering some of the remodels in the area. One thing that's stayed the same, the corner lot which now measures out at a small-ish 2,500 square feet. That makes one fewer neighbors. The lack of a fence or hedge means less privacy; but that's worked well enough for over a hundred years, evidently. One attractive feature, the sub-half-million dollar price: $450,000.

The last time this house sold was in 1989 - for $78,500. Ah, those were the days. Now, try the nice round number of $500,000 for this 2 bedroom, 1 bath house that's mostly hidden under foliage. Just like the house above, it has about the same age (1908) and about the same size (810 square feet). The lot is much bigger, 5,998 square feet, and is the source of those bushes, trees, and vines. There aren't any photos of the interior, and they suggest "Bring your architect and contractor with you!"; so maybe you can consider this a Before. We look forward to the After, or at least a view of the building if the growth is cut back.

For "only" a bit more, $569,000, you can get a much newer house (1942!) on the same size lot (5,998 square feet); but the effect is easy to see. That's because they took photos inside. The house is larger, 1,160 square feet, which let them include 3 bedrooms and 1.5 bathrooms. A bonus is a second entry, in case someone in the family wants privacy, a quiet entrance; or you decided to have renters. The most dramatic improvement may be that the architects and contractors have already been at work improving some of the decor while retaining original pieces like the fireplace. If you take a tour, go out back and check out the multi-surface, seemingly Baby Boom era, big brick BBQ that sits on a broad, covered patio.

After a day of shopping for houses, they can all blend; but you'll probably remember the one with the paved orchard out back. This 1937, 3 bedroom, 3 bathroom one story has an emphasis on plants and control. Even the living room has garden windows where plants can be safe from pesky pests, or at least slugs; and then there's the orchard where each tree has a circle of dirt and broad concrete separating it from its neighbors. That should make it easy to weed. The house and 6,000 square foot lot haven't been on the market since 1981; so you know it worked well enough for someone. Now, it is listed at $699,000. While it may be fun to check out the way they tended their plants, look inside the 1,970 square foot house for arched doorways and bay windows.

In this case, the gardens are worth a tour of their own. The 3 bedroom, 2 bathroom, 1,620 square foot house is nice and in good shape; but the established and professionally landscaped 4,356 square foot yard provides a suite of sitting areas, spots shaded by trellises, and hardly any lawn to mow. The house was built in 1944, so some of the landscaping can be very well established. Ask the pros about what wants to grow there and they can probably just point as proof. In addition to the normal materials, they deviated from the norm with quartz counters in the kitchen and cement plank siding for the exterior. For plant lovers, this may be a pretty package for $750,000.

· 2658 22nd Ave W [Zillow]

· 3647 33rd Ave W [Zillow]

· 3013 34th Ave W [Zillow]

· 3241 29th Ave W [Zillow]

· 3409 W Viewmont Way W [Zillow]