The Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) purchased the Carr House in 1916, converting it to a dormitory in 1923 followed by a variety of functions through the 1970s, ranging from an infirmary to a restaurant. As a result, the interior has been renovated and redesigned numerous times, though it's room-layout largely remains intact.
In contrast, the Garr House's exterior remains much the same as it did in the late nineteenth century. When built, Nickerson accounted for the home's sloping lot by emphasizing the structure's vertical attributes rather than its horizontal features. A real sign of the times, as well, the house appears to exist as one substantial residence, but it was two separate dwellings (with a few openings that connected them) with its southern section, three-story house, intended to house a future son or daughter upon marriage.