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Budget Beach House

Driving through Hoboken, New Jersey, in their Chevy pickup truck one evening about ten years ago, Peter McMahon and Susan Jennings spotted a mason bricking up a printing plant and tossing the discarded steel-casement windows in a pile. McMahon stopped the truck.

"Are you throwing these away?" McMahon asked.

"Yes, the mason answered. "If you can cart them away, they're yours."

The next day the couple returned, broke the glass panes to lighten the load, and stacked the 5-by-5 three-inch steel frames in the back of their truck. They weren't sure what they would do with them -- perhaps give them to some friends, maybe use them themselves. An architect, McMahon had always wanted to design and build his own house, but times were lean and the dream house was still a fantasy.

Budget Beach House (670 KB)

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