House Update

It has been slow-going on the house front since we moved in, (after a whirlwind renovation nightmare the weeks prior) but we are settled and things are coming together.

What all did we end up doing? Here is a list. Many of these items were not anticipated, so yes, getting the house ready to move in was a lot more costly than we thought. Everyone who ever talked about home ownership and how it is a money drain…they weren’t lying.

  • We removed carpet throughout the house
  • Sanded all walls and ceilings and removed popcorn
  • Installed ventilation in the skirting of the house for air flow (we had water damage in the hardwoods, and this would prevent future damage)
  • Lots of electrical work
  • Painted ceilings and walls and closets-every surface of the house basically
  • Hardwood floor refinishing
  • Reinstalled quarter round after the hardwood floor people took it off
  • Trim painting
  • Ceiling fans installed in bedrooms
  • Recessed lighting installed in kitchen and living room
  • Lots of drywall repairs after the old lighting was removed (this was surprising to us, though it should not have been. DUH there will be holes in the ceiling afterward.)
  • New light fixture in the dining room
  • Removed all old insulation, decontaminated it (the house had a rodent infestation in the attic prior to us moving in) and re-blowing new insulation.

ARE YOU TIRED AND BROKE YET JUST HAVING READ THIS??? I can NOT believe we got all of that done in the last couple of months. It was not fun. At all. But we learned a lot, and will be much more prepared in the future if we ever decide to do any of this again. I’m praying we will not.

Some things we learned along the way include:

  1. Everything will take longer and be more expensive than you anticipate.
  2. Tearing one thing apart to fix it will DEFINITELY unearth a whoooooole new world of things wrong with your house that need fixing. Plan for it.
  3. Painting the trim makes a huge difference.
  4. Do the floors last. Dead last. We did them second to last, and the trim painters accidentally put huge holes in our newly refinished hardwoods.
  5. No matter how far we run, the rats will follow us. **Current status: After catching a huge one in the kitchen this week, we appear to be out of the woods for now…
  6. When you make one update, all it does is make the things that aren’t updated stand out more. My living room looks great, but suddenly the bathroom became unbearable.
  7. We are, truly, the most spoiled rotten ridiculously privileged and disgustingly selfish people who ever lived. Case in point: the last 6 bullets of things I just talked about, and feel entitled to complain about. WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME???

I want to insert a major shout-out to my friends and family for putting up with the non-stop house talk (cough whining cough) over the last few months. Once my semester of doom has ended I promise to have everyone over for a nice dinner to thank you for lending your ears and words of comfort to me in such a frustrating season. You all are the best ever.

So even though everything in me wants to resent this little 2 bedroom money pit at the moment, I am trying to choose every day to be grateful and joyful and hopeful about our future here. It is pretty cute if you avoid the bathrooms 😉

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Sometime in the far off future we will muster up the energy to hang things on the wall and maybe even put curtains up. But this is probably as good as it is going to get for some time. I’m totally okay with that.

Have a great weekend, and feel free to ask questions if anyone is facing similar house situations. We have a tool belt of knowledge that we’d be happy to share and a few good contractors we’d be happy to point you to.

Cheers! -Caroline

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