The original owner of a Colonial saltbox house at 184 Somerset Ave. was quoted in a Fairfield Lumber and Supply Co. newspaper advertisement saying that he always wanted a house "that was native New England -- a Salt Box," and he credited the local company with providing the lumber and hardware that his designed needed to make it "traditional, the way it was planned."

That ad does not date to Revolutionary-era Fairfield as one might expect with a saltbox. Rather, it was published in 1948, the year the house was built on a prime piece of real estate along the Mill River in the Riverhurst area off Unquowa Road.

Actually, it is a modified saltbox. From the exterior it resembles a traditional saltbox. Inside, there is an entrance hallway that would not be found in vintage houses of the same architectural style. It is suitable for today's lifestyle, especially for those who enjoy being close to town and its shops and restaurants, the library, downtown train station and Interstate 95. The train and other town amenities are a short walk away, yet residents can feel worlds away because of its direct riverfront location on the quiet cul-de-sac.

The house has remained in the same family since it was built. The current owner grew up in the house. He and his wife appreciate the water views and the waterfowl and songbirds that populate the area. When the river freezes, as it did this winter, local children play ice, or "pond" hockey, he said. They also enjoy skating and feeding the ducks.

On most days in warm-weather months residents can sit outside facing the river to watch swans, geese and ducks glide and fly by. There is also a large three-season porch with wall-to-wall carpeting from which to take in the view. It has a door to the riverside backyard. The fully finished 14-by-16-foot porch functions as a room for the current owners. A Dutch door separates this porch from the dining room.

The house has 1,394 square feet of living space, not including the 224 square feet of the finished porch. Included in that space are the 12-over-12 double-hung windows, which are more often seen in antique homes not newer ones, lending to its authentic appearance.

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There is also a fireplace in the living room, and two bedrooms, although there is at least one additional room that could be used as another bedroom or guest room if necessary. That is the first-floor den, which has a closet.

In the living room, there are wood-paneled walls and the fireplace has a red brick surround with a long white wood mantel and storage for wood, as well as a parson's cabinet, which was converted to store audio equipment. Built-in shelving provides display space for photographs, family mementos and china.

There is a circular flow to the layout with the living room leading to the dining room, which goes into the kitchen and then into the hallway leading to the den and the front door, and back into the living room.

The kitchen suits the house and features one granite counter and another topped in wood.

More Information

ABOUT THIS HOUSE
TYPE: Colonial saltbox
ADDRESS: 184 Somerset Ave.
PRICE: $649,000
NUMBER OF ROOMS: 7
FEATURES: water views, direct waterfront on the Mill River, located on a cul-de-sac, proximity to downtown train station and I-95, red brick driveway, 0.19-acre level and sloping property, one fireplace, all window treatments, tankless hot water, storm doors and windows, extra insulation, full unfinished basement with storage, detached two-car garage, two bedrooms, one full and one half baths
SCHOOLS: Riverfield Elementary, Roger Ludlowe Middle, Fairfield Ludlowe High
ASSESSMENT: $453,950
TAX RATE: 24.4 mills
TAXES: $11,076

On the second floor near the master bedroom is a small room that was probably designed as a nursery. It could still serve that purpose or be used as a small home office, or a computer or homework room.

Energy features include storm doors and windows, and tankless hot water. There is also lots of under-eaves storage.

The detached two-car garage was also built in the saltbox style, and it has a cupola topped with a rooster weather vane.

For more information or to set up an appointment to see the house, contact Catherine Fingelly Granneberg of Nicholas Fingelly Real Estate at 203-454-5194 or email her at cfingellygranneberg@yahoo.com.

ABOUT THIS HOUSE

TYPE: Colonial saltbox

ADDRESS: 184 Somerset Ave.

PRICE: $649,000

NUMBER OF ROOMS: 7

FEATURES: water views, direct waterfront on the Mill River, located on a cul-de-sac, proximity to downtown train station and I-95, red brick driveway, 0.19-acre level and sloping property, one fireplace, all window treatments, tankless hot water, storm doors and windows, extra insulation, full unfinished basement with storage, detached two-car garage, two bedrooms, one full and one half baths

SCHOOLS: Riverfield Elementary, Roger Ludlowe Middle, Fairfield Ludlowe High

ASSESSMENT: $453,950

TAX RATE: 24.4 mills

TAXES: $11,076