Ron Denhaan, Realtor (949) 290-3263. Orange County real estate specialist.
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Vintage homes in Orange County,CA

Vintage homes and properties for sale in Orange County, CA

Orange County, California vintage, period, antique, and historic homes and properties for sale. These homes include any built up to 1949, with perhaps true "vintage" craftsmanship applying only to homes built up to 1939. Even though there is a growing interest in 1950s homes and furniture, homes constructed in 1950 and later are mid-century style. To search for 1940s, 50s, and 60s homes, visit my new web page, mid-century homes for sale in Orange CountyThis page includes links for the following cities and unincorporated areas which have significant numbers of older, period, and historic homes: Anaheim, Brea, Buena Park, Costa Mesa, Cypress, Dana Point,  Fullerton, Garden Grove, Huntington Beach, Laguna Beach, Newport Beach, North Tustin, Orange, Placentia, San Clemente, San Juan Capistrano, Santa Ana, Yorba Linda, plus Old Town Tustin real estate.

Why buy a Vintage Home?

Vintage homes are certainly not for everyone. There is a school of thought among many people that properties have a definite lifespan, and that older homes that have outlived their usefulness should be leveled and replaced by new construction. Clearly, an older home, especially one that has not been extensively renovated, lacks many of the creature comforts of a modern home. Further, maintenance and restoration of an older home is expensive. For most buyers, a newer home may simply be more desirable. So why should you buy an old one? 

First off, many vintage homes may be less expensive than newer ones. Because there is a smaller market for "vintage" homes, you may be able to find an affordable bungalow or Spanish Revival home for less that a comparable "tract" home. Many buyers prefer the distinct character and storied history of an older house to the quickly built, cookie cutter approach of many new homes. Also, many people feel that the quality of older homes is better - better materials and better craftsmanship. Everything was made to last longer. There is a great sense of satisfaction in owning a home that has been carefully preserved and passed down through many generations of Orange County homeowners. With redevelopment and urban sprawl decimating the history of the County, many homebuyers take pride in becoming the custodian of a small remnant of the County's past, and one that has withstood the test of time. If you decide to purchase an older house in a historic district, there may be local ordinances, which may limit what you can do to the home. Owners of historic homes are often restricted from changing the outside appearance of the home, including such things as painting, window styles and certain landscaping. On the flip side, if you purchase a historic home (or if your home later qualifies to be designated as a historic home), you may qualify to receive property tax benefits under the Mills Act. This designation could result in significantly reduced property taxes (call me for more information on this!)

( Search by price, by city, by style, homes for lease, and vintage homes statistics on next page )

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Search for Orange County Vintage homes for sale 

Search by decade (year of construction)


1900 Queen Anne Victorian


The population of Orange County, CA is unknown, but very low

Beautiful turn of the century home

19th Century Orange County homes are those that were constructed in 1899 or earlier. Many of the homes built in OC during  the 1800s were of the Queen Anne Victorian or Farmhouse Victorian styles. These houses are known for their elaborate woodwork, ornamentation,  and wrap around porches. Existing homes from this period are extremely rare. In fact, it is so rare to find one for sale that there is only one search link for all of Orange County. When one of these rare gems does come on the market, it will be listed here.

Search Orange County 19th Century homes for sale


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Eartly 1900s large craftsmam home

1900 to 1909

The population of Orange County, CA is 19,696

1900s home in OC

Many homes built during the early 1900s were of the Craftsman style. This style probably originated with furniture designer, Gustav Stickley in 1901. This was style that included details from the arts and crafts movement, including a large front porch supported by posts or columns, a gabled roof, and wood siding. Beach area homes form this era include modest bungalows or cottages. 

Homes from the 1900 to 1909 decade are rare and are seldom on the market. Cities with reasonable numbers of 1900 to 1909 homes include Anaheim, Fullerton, Garden Grove, Huntington Beach, Laguna Beach, Newport Beach, Orange, San Clemente, Santa Ana, and Tustin. 

All OC cities 1900 to 1909


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Two story cottage style home

1910 to 1919

The population of Orange County, CA reaches 34,346

Old craftsman with white picket fence

Homes in the 1910s were still largely of the two-story Craftsman style, but the more economical single story Craftsman cottage or "bungalow" version was also very popular. A few of the larger Craftsman homes also had basements. Many of the homes from this decade were not originally built with a garage, due to the lack of automobiles during this period. Most were later retrofitted with stand-alone garages in the rear of the home.

All OC cities 1910 to 1919 North OC cities  Beach and coastal areas


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1920s craftsman bungalow

1920 to 1929

The population of Orange County, CA reaches 61,375

Spanish bungalow

By the 1920s, the prominent home style constructed during the 1920s was the still the modest Craftsman style bungalow. This was a smaller, more economical version of the original Craftsman and was characterized by a gabled roof, posts or columns, and an inviting front porch. Also popular in much of Orange County during the 1920s were homes of the Spanish Revival, Mediterranean, and Mission design. These houses featured stucco exteriors, red tile roofs, and arched details. In San Clemente, many homes of this era were designed by city founder Ole Hanson and were of Spanish design. In contrast, many homes built in Laguna Beach were rustic, cape cod and cottage style homes.

All OC cities 1920 to 1929 North OC cities  Beach and coastal areas


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Spanish style house


1930 to 1939

The population of Orange County, CA reaches 118,674

Mediterranean influenced home

In Orange County during the 1930s, the construction of the earlier Craftsman styled homes had abated in favor of modest cottages and bungalows designed with Spanish, Mediterranean, Mission, and even Tudor influences. Many beach area custom houses and cottages with varying styles were constructed in Laguna Beach and in Newport Beach. These stood apart from inland 1930s homes, as many were crafted with distinct Traditional, Cape Cod, Colonial, and Victorian influences. In San Clemente, additional Spanish style homes and cottages designed by Ole Hanson were constructed.

All OC cities 1930 to 1939 North OC cities  Beach and coastal areas



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WWII home

1940 to 1949

The population of Orange County, CA reaches 130,760

1940s Fullerton house

Many houses constructed during the World War II era are very simple in design. The high post-war housing demand meant that homes had to be built quickly and inexpensively. Houses built during this era are mostly small, rectangular structures with a simple pitched roof. Though they are small and of simple construction, they are generally inexpensive and are great as starter homes, for first time home buyers, and for investors as rental properties. Also, because they are smaller, many 1940s properties are less expensive to restore. 

All OC cities 1940 to 1949 North OC cities  Beach and coastal areas


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Thank you for visiting my Orange County vintage homes web page! Vintage, turn-of-the-century, lots, and historical homes for sale in OC are an endangered species, due to the County's re-development efforts. I hope that you will treasure these homes as much as I do and that as a homeowner, you will endeavor to preserve, protect, and restore your unique property. Each one of these properties is a small piece of Orange County history! Call me if you are looking for a vintage or old house for sale in orange county ca.

Just released! A new page for mid-century modern homes for sale

   Ron Denhaan

Contact me

DRE LIc# 01728866

Ron Denhaan, vintage Realtor

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All information on this page is believed to be accurate but it is not  guaranteed. Readers should always do their own research and verification. I needed photos to illustrate this largely educational page. If I inadvertently used one of yours and you'd rather that I didn't, just write and I will remove it promptly. Photos on these pages do not necessarily represent actual homes in Orange County, CA, but are illustrative of the style of home described.