Our house is 84 years old and comes with all the quirks you would expect (and some you wouldn’t) with an old house. Take for example the fact that we only have one bathroom. This is hard to fathom for folks who are only interested in new construction. Apparently people just didn’t poop as much back in the 30’s. Maybe it’s all that processed food we eat now? Makes for more bathroom runs?
You know we had our first unexpected disaster when our basement started flooding. We ended up hiring a waterproofing company to come out and install an interior french drain. They performed the work, but didn’t cover any of the stuff we keep in our basement (washer/dryer, ski stuff, blankets, tools, etc). This resulted in a big fat mess as all of our stuff was covered in a thick layer of concrete dust.
Needless to say, I was not a happy camper.
I was invoiced $3,000 for the work, but after many lengthy emails, photo documentation of the mess they made, and threats to leave poor reviews on Angie’s List and Yelp they dropped the price down to $1,350. I guess user reviews are really important to companies
Our newest unexpected nightmare comes via our finished attic space.
The ceilings upstairs have a pretty significant pitch to them and the space felt depressingly dark…
I know, it looks like a hot mess.
Since this is Baby Ninja’s room, and we expect to be spending a decent amount of time in this space over the years, we knew we needed to rehab it. We started by installing two skylights upstairs. This resulted in an instant transformation of the space. It added about 12 inches of extra ceiling height and let’s in a ton more light. Each skylight cost $500 installed.
After having the skylights installed I was able to peek behind the drywall and I noticed there was about two feet of empty space between our ceiling and the actual peak of the roof. Capturing that space would mean the upstairs would go from 6’6 ceilings to a much more normal 8’+.
After getting some drywall quotes we decided to go forward with busting out the ceilings. Last Saturday, we spent half the day ripping out the drywall. Once the ceiling was exposed things took a turn for the
When we bought the house, we were told the electrical had been updated everywhere, but of course life is never that easy. Turns out our entire upstairs runs on knob and tube.
My attic remodel project just went from $1,500 to pushing $5,000 with the swing of a hammer.
This weekend I’ll be demoing the upstairs down to the studs on every wall. This will save a ton of money on electrical labor as it opens everything up and gives the electrician easy access. I have the drywaller coming over this weekend to help me with the demo. Here’s what our baby room looks like as of yesterday…
The sight of the demolition work brought Girl Ninja to tears yesterday. What was supposed to be a beautiful baby room is anything but right now. Couple the dirty, smelly, demo work with a slew of pregnancy hormones and you can get why she was emotional.
I guess the moral of this story is three-fold.
- Never trust the sellers or listing agent.
- Prepare for the worst whenever you start a project.
- Pregnancy and demo work don’t jive.
Oh, and this is the look we are going for…