Homeseller

Andover home has many upgrades

By Jim Warren

This luxury home sits amid acres of peaceful, manicured green space, its many large windows bathing the interior with bright sunlight and providing stunning views of Lexington’s park-like Andover Hills neighborhood.

The three-level brick home boasts four bedrooms, 31/2 baths and just over 4,000 square feet of space.

Other main features include an open floor plan; modern master suite with wet-coffee bar, sitting room and fireplace; beautiful hardwood floors; and luxurious décor throughout.

“It’s a really easy house to live in,” owner Jeri Isbell says.

Isbell bought the home at 582 Gingermill Lane in 2005 after falling in love with it almost the first moment she saw it.

“My realtor was driving me around looking at properties and we passed this house a couple of times. I told myself I had to see the inside. I walked in and said, ‘This is it. This is the one.’”

Isbell liked the house so much that she spent the next several years, and many thousands of dollars, turning what was already a beautiful home into a showplace.

The list of inside and outside add-ons and upgrades goes on and on: new two-level back patio; new brick-paver drive and walkway; 15,000-watt electrical generator; new bathrooms; new windows and front door; new heating and AC system; landscape lighting; alarm system; new wet bars; new roof and firepit.

Last, but far from least, Isbell improved and expanded a bubbly waterfall out back that empties into a small pond where water lilies grow, overlooking the former Andover golf course.

All told, Isbell put in more than $300,000 worth of improvements over the years. The work was completed in 2016.

“The house was built in 1991, so I wanted to bring it up to date,” Jeri said. “But I did all the work for my own enjoyment. I wasn’t one of those who want to fix up a house and sell it. I wanted to fix it up to live in. And I’ve gotten to enjoy all the updates that I made.”

One of Jeri’s favorite upgrades was putting heated floors in the master bathroom.

“I had no idea it was even something you could do, but one of my friends did it and it sounded nice. Now, it’s great to go into the bathroom on winter mornings and have the floor be warm on your feet.”

Isbell, a Lexington native, is an Eastern Kentucky University graduate and member of the school’s Hall of Distinguished Alumni.

She worked more than 30 years at IBM and Lexmark, holding posts including Vice President of Human Recourses and Corporate Communications. She also found time to be board chair of the Lexington Chamber of Commerce, work with church and charities, and mentor young women at the University of Kentucky and Transylvania University.

Now retired, Isbell plans to sell her Lexington home and move to Naples, Fl., where she has a condo.

“All my children are raised and gone and I just don’t need this big house anymore,” she says.

At the front of the house, you’re immediately drawn to the main entrance sheltered under a two-story high portico. An attractive retaining wall reaches across the front and wraps around the side, enclosing a large planting area with flowers and shrubbery.

Stepping inside, you find a formal dining room on the left, followed by the living room and modern eat-in kitchen, whose custom cabinets are decorated with wood trim. There is an executive office just off the central area, and a few more steps lead you outside under a large pergola to the two-level back patio with its firepit and soothing waterfall.

“I love to cook and when I’m at the kitchen sink I can look out and enjoy all the greenery,” Isbell says. “I have so many great family memories from right there in that kitchen.

“In the summer, it’s wonderful just sitting out on the patio and listening to the waterfall flow down over the rocks with all that green space beyond. It’s very relaxing and comforting.”

The home backs up to the old Andover golf course, which closed in 2017. Neighborhood associations then bought the course, which now is maintained – and protected from development -- as green space for fitness walking or relaxed strolls.

“Personally, I use the golf course more now than when it was open,” Jeri said. “I was a non-golfer. But now I go out and walk the front nine almost every day. It’s a beautiful space to just get out and enjoy.”

Entertaining is easy, given the home’s spacious open floor plan and the easily accessible patio, which allows crowds to flow outside.

“I have an annual Derby party,” Jeri says. “I don’t know how many people come – maybe 50 – but there are lots of them. Of course, there’s Christmas and Thanksgiving with my family and other gatherings in between. It’s a wonderful house for entertaining.”

From the Andover home, just north of Richmond Road, access to most parts of Lexington is easy. Man o’ War Boulevard, New Circle Road and interstate highways are close by, while shopping and restaurants at nearby Hamburg Place are just minutes away.

Isbell says she thinks the house would appeal to most buyers, particularly families with children.

“It’s a very child-friendly house. My favorite times here are in the spring when the trees and plants are blooming, and the early fall when the leaves are in full color.

“I have really enjoyed living in this house.”

This week’s feature home is listed with Whitney Durham of Bluegrass Sotheby’s International Realty. To view more photos of the home, visit the Homeseller gallery at Kentucky.com.

“My realtor was driving me around looking at properties and we passed the house a couple of times,” Isbell recalled. “I told myself, ‘I’ve got to see inside this house.’ I walked in and said, ‘This is the one.’”

The house at 582 Gingermill Lane was really nice when Isbell bought it in 2005. But she then spent more than $300,000 turning the home into a true showplace.

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