Stay at Home Daddad stays home Stay at home Dad Books Available at Amazon

Fishing Gear

Go Back   Stay at Home Dads Forum > Daddy Stuff > DIY Dads
Register FAQ VB Image Host More Stuff Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
  #1  
Old 01-23-2015, 02:58 PM
Kwak's Avatar
Kwak Kwak is offline
Super Duper Daddy
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Off the deep end
Posts: 9,653
Default "Love It or List It" Kluge

The more we talk about moving the more I think of that show on HGTV called "Love It or List It." As you guys know, my wife is hot and heavy to move and I'm finally starting to feel like I'm getting the house to where I want it.

We live in one of those prefab developer communities who bought a bunch of land off some farmer or utility about 30 years back and subdivided the land into tiny little lots. They leveled enough of the lot to put a house and they offered at the time maybe a half dozen different models with different options. On our street there are maybe 6 houses that have the same basic floor plan as ours but with different options that unfortunately also determine the usable amount of square footage.

In our house, we have a two story foyer that in other houses would have been used for a bedroom. Instead what we have is a void without even a window to provide natural light. This room is the embodiment of what we both don't like about our house. It has not purpose whatsoever and the catwalk on the side is worse than useless. Our cat fell off it when she was a kitten and burned one of her nine lives. The laundry area is right around the corner and Justin is constantly throwing dirty laundry out there. Finishing out the trifecta Joey will scale over the banister and go out there to show how daring he can be. Personally, I would love it if there were at least a loft or something. Even a window there would be good but unfortunately, there is no place for a window big enough in the facade of our home. It just wouldn't fit. Don't even get me started on the chandalier. How that thing is even still hanging is beyond me. I guess because it's JUST out of reach so dusting it or changing bulbs is a major PITA.

Anyway...this past September I taped off the crown molding but (as is my nature much to my wife's exasperation) I put it off and did it piecemeal. My excuse was that Justin had pounded some holes in the walls with various body parts but they've since been patched or the sections replaced so the walls are all in one piece - more or less. Finally I got tired of looking at spackle, bare drywall and crayon and decided to do something about it. I bought a painter's pole, a fitting for a paintbrush so I could cut the trim, even one of those paper overall suits.

I know I'm rambling here, so I'll cut this short: yesterday I tackled one of the big parts of this project in the form of that front wall. This is just the first coat of primer. Before the section of wall behind where that useless piece of furniture is in front of was bare drywall that patched a hole that Justin mule-kicked during a meltdown. There are two more in that room in similar condition.

Before:



In progress:



Off the side is the ugly ass wallpaper my wife had to put up beneath a chair rail that Justin tore down and harpooned that d@mn front wall with. It extends all the way up the stairs and continues down the upstairs hallway. That's all coming down and at some point I'm going to have to put up a new chair rail. I'll be d@mned if I hang even one more sheet of wallpaper.

PS: ignore the wiring hanging out of the wall. That's for the doorbell and another item for the kluge.
__________________
Married to Kelly, 6/19/1999
SAHD since August, 2004
Father to Justin, 2/27/2004
Father to Joseph, 3/11/2007

Last edited by Kwak; 01-23-2015 at 03:01 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 01-23-2015, 04:41 PM
tt3's Avatar
tt3 tt3 is offline
Beer me!
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: MSP
Posts: 13,515
Send a message via Yahoo to tt3
Default

http://www.goodshomedesign.com/how-t...ething-useful/

Funny this came across my news feed this morning.
Good luck
__________________
Lord Anton Treml III
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 01-23-2015, 05:44 PM
Mark B.'s Avatar
Mark B. Mark B. is offline
Trophy Husband
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Central Connecticant
Posts: 16,361
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by tt3 View Post
http://www.goodshomedesign.com/how-t...ething-useful/

Funny this came across my news feed this morning.
Good luck

That is a great Idea. Our ATL house had the open foyer. Was JUST able to get to the chandelier for cleaning but was daunting. In VA the house used the space for dressing area in the Master. Our current home has a full bathroom there for a bed room. That is the best use for that space IMO.


Have fun Kwak!!
__________________
Sent From My PC or My 4G Droid With Best In Breed Voice Recognition Software!
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 01-23-2015, 06:08 PM
TwoCubs's Avatar
TwoCubs TwoCubs is offline
Just Dad
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Tennessee
Posts: 2,440
Default

I'm with you on hating wallpaper, Kwak. My mom brought that about. When I in high school, I did paint and drywall on the side. So my mom rips down the peeling wallpaper in the bathroom and asks me to smooth the wall because she wants to paint it. I busted my a$$ getting those walls smooth enough to put semi-gloss on.

Yep she painted them... and then put wallpaper back up.
__________________
Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more -- Shakespeare, Henry V

"Just smile and wave, boys, smile and wave"--The Penguins, Madagascar
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 01-23-2015, 07:07 PM
mogwai dad's Avatar
mogwai dad mogwai dad is offline
Mogwai not for sale.
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Timbers of Fennario
Posts: 3,044
Default

Funny, I saw that very same thing on my feed this morning.

Wallpaper is the devil. When I bought this place every single room had wallpaper. The even put wallpaper on the vertical blinds. It all came down and got chucked right when we moved in.
__________________
Pull my finger
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 01-23-2015, 11:35 PM
Kwak's Avatar
Kwak Kwak is offline
Super Duper Daddy
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Off the deep end
Posts: 9,653
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by tt3 View Post
http://www.goodshomedesign.com/how-t...ething-useful/

Funny this came across my news feed this morning.
Good luck
That's what I was thinking, T. I'd prefer an enclosed room and it would still be a tiny space with funny angles and still no window though because the cold air return is right there. It would be a big project - and not the only one I have in mind. We did just get approved for a line of credit, part of which I used to finance the fence and the deck repairs. My wife would never go for them though. The LOC was intended for repairs and light upgrades like flooring and bathroom remodeling. I'm envisioning:

1: upgrading the master bathroom with a whirpool bath, new sink, new counter, lighting fixtures and tile floor.

2: similar upgrades for the boys' bathroom

3: moving the laundry from the upstairs hallway to the basement by the deep sink.

4: repairing the subfloor downstairs and installing hardwood floors.

... Some light changes to the layout would include:

5: turning the underutilized living room in the front of the house into the dining room. It already has shelving with recessed lighting but just lacks doors to serve as China cabinets.

6: turning the existing dining room (which is a bit cramped for that purpose IMO) into the home office.

As for the more ambitious projects:

7: have a matching roof built atop our octagonal deck as well as improve the roofing over the bay window in the breakfast nook - which is where the back door currently is. ideally I would like to knock out double window in the family room and replace it with a sliding glass door. I also want the door removed from the breakfast nook and turn it to an ordinary bay window. This would simplify a traffic problem and the covered portion of the deck would act as a buffer since we have no mud room. This is how our next door neighbor's house is laid out.

8: enclose the upper portion of the foyer and move the wall and entry door in Justin's room over four feet to make two equal sized bedrooms. This would be tricky because of the location of the windows, cold air return and electrical outlets and switches but moving the washer/dryer would free up the needed space.

The remaining rear bedroom (now occupied by Joey) would then become our guest room. I'd move Joey into Justin's room and then put Justin in the newly created bedroom closer to ours. That way he'd be closer to us and the bathroom for those middle of the night episodes.


Like I said, it's ambitious - and probably expensive - but the house would better suit our needs. The major sticking point then would be the kitchen, which is encroached upon by the downstairs bathroom. I wish I could think of a place where I could move it to, but the downstairs is cramped the way it is. It's basically this huge afterthought right where ideally an island could be.

__________________
Married to Kelly, 6/19/1999
SAHD since August, 2004
Father to Justin, 2/27/2004
Father to Joseph, 3/11/2007

Last edited by Kwak; 01-23-2015 at 11:45 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 01-24-2015, 09:26 PM
TwoCubs's Avatar
TwoCubs TwoCubs is offline
Just Dad
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Tennessee
Posts: 2,440
Default

Dang, Kwak! You're making me tired. That's just a heck of a lot of remodeling. I think a move would be a less expensive option, but I'm not you guys.

The bathroom does look like an after-thought in the kitchen, though.
__________________
Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more -- Shakespeare, Henry V

"Just smile and wave, boys, smile and wave"--The Penguins, Madagascar
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 01-25-2015, 04:44 AM
Kwak's Avatar
Kwak Kwak is offline
Super Duper Daddy
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Off the deep end
Posts: 9,653
Default

You may have a point, but when I look around the area at what's out there that we're considering (namely a 5 bedroom house) there just isn't much to choose from. It would actually make sense to build, but after living in one of these "cookie cutter" houses I'd be pushing to do it the right way: buy an acre of land somewhere and hire an architect and general contractor. I'll be damned if I'm going to move into a 30 year old house only to have to put a new roof on it and a new furnace in the basement. Been there, done that with this house; we've paid our dues and if we're more responsible we could have it paid off in 10 years since we've lived here for 15. Why reset the clock and/or roll the dice?

Anyway, again you're right about the renovations. This house isn't going to offer me a man cave or an in-law suite but we've put a lot into it - like the fence and the deck this year, not to mention a new roof, aluminum flashing, windows, HVAC, hot water heater, etc. - so to move seems just silly.

That is, unless we were to do a BIG move, not just to a house down the street or the next zip code over. Apart from Philly and Northern Virginia I don't know where that would be. We have to consider Justin's long term needs and unless we move to the upper midwest where the autism services are superior to here it makes more sense to stay within this county.

That's not to say I haven't been looking. My wife mentioned that a woman she rides the trolley with every morning has mentioned that she's moving soon. She lives in the same plan as we do and has a 4 bedroom house. Well, it's been listed and I've driven by it a couple of times and frankly I think it's a lateral move. Sure the house has the extra bedroom and the payments would be the same as we're paying now but apart from that it's the same size and the lot sucks worse than this one. It's wedge shaped with no back yard at all or even a back porch. In fact, there's just 1 tree on the whole lot. You guys have seem the pictures of our back yard. It's a garden with 20+ trees, 40+ shrubs, not to mention the recent renovations to the deck and the addition of the fence.

No, if we were going to move my wife has it in her mind that we're going to move to a more upscale neighborhood with "mature" trees and a house with more square footage, a finished basement, a large and flat back yard, yada yada yada. The problem is that the price tag is about twice what we're paying a month now. On a single income we couldn't swing that.

So, unless there's some family emergency where one of our parents has to move in with us - which is a looming possibility - I think it's best to stay put and dress up the old digs. We already have a line of credit to draw from. We just have to be selective about where to spend it. My money's on remodeling the bathroom, upgrading the insulation and altering the layout of the adjoining family room/kitchen areas. It would be worth my wife's while because that would involve repairing the subfloor in the nook and putting in all new flooring.
__________________
Married to Kelly, 6/19/1999
SAHD since August, 2004
Father to Justin, 2/27/2004
Father to Joseph, 3/11/2007
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 09-19-2016, 01:33 PM
Kwak's Avatar
Kwak Kwak is offline
Super Duper Daddy
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Off the deep end
Posts: 9,653
Default

This keeps rearing its ugly head. Wife still has it in her head that at some point we're going to have to take one of her parents in and is making noise for fixing up the house and then moving. That's probably not going to happen ; they love Florida too much and now with my newly-divorced BIL there for the long haul I say let that responsibility fall to him.

Meanwhile, here in our abode the renovations are in the works. I've patched up most of the holes and am making progress on painting. This month I replaced the sink in the downstairs powder room (it's still not completely in because the flooring is TBD and I am having the old busted door and frame replaced this week) and painted the walls and ceiling.



We have a contractor coming out to measure for new vinyl flooring and another contractor coming out to do general contractor stuff. My wife wants to get an idea of what it would take to enclose the foyer and make a 4th bedroom as well as renovation of all 3 bathrooms, going whole hog on the master bathroom with new bath tubs and vanities.

We'll likely finance the flooring and use our LOC for the rest. It might even make sense to FINALLY refinance down to a 15 year fixed rate mortgage. Fingers crossed, but at least our house is starting to feel like a home again.
__________________
Married to Kelly, 6/19/1999
SAHD since August, 2004
Father to Justin, 2/27/2004
Father to Joseph, 3/11/2007
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 10-02-2016, 02:48 PM
Kwak's Avatar
Kwak Kwak is offline
Super Duper Daddy
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Off the deep end
Posts: 9,653
Default

You may have had a point, TwoCubs. This is beyond me.

My wife decided not to move the goal posts, added her wants to the list and asked me to get some quotes to do the whole house remodel. One of her workout friends - who happens to be Joey's old 4yo preschool teacher - gave us a name of a contractor and we spent about 45 minutes walking him through our shanty of a home.

We downplayed the shit stains on the ceiling since I had already scrubbed and painted over them. Shhhhh!!!! THe last two contractors never called me back and I suspect that was the reason.

In addition to my list, wifey wants the kitchen layout changed with vinyl laminate flooring, her master bathroom completely renovated (with tile floors), hardwood in the foyer and dining room, the little bathroom moved into a hallway closet that will be expanded and the upper level of the foyer to be enclosed to create a 10'x14' bedroom.

Pretty extensive I know, but that 4th bedroom and updated kitchen and master bathroom will hopefully increase the value of our home. As it stands according to city-data.com it's already appreciated about $100K since we moved in. This would essentially double the value of what we paid for it in 1999.

After a few days he called back (not to sound like a jilted schoolgirl but HURRAY) and hit me with the price of about $87K. I won't lie, it stung a little but the alternative is to move into a different house and do the same things. I think there's some fat that can be trimmed.

The biggest hit, believe it or not was the kitchen at $55K. Knocking down walls and moving plumbing (surprisingly) wasn't the most expensive thing. It was all new quartz counters, custom cabinets and flooring which accounts for nearly $20K. Therein lies the fat and we'd essentially be throwing away a new corian counter that we just paid about $5K for a couple of years ago.

So I'm looking at alternatives. We got the countertops from Lowe's. I checked and the material we had installed has not been discontinued so if we were to have additional counter space put in after the bathroom is moved we could conceivably get a matching countertop. We had already talked to another place about flooring and they (being salespeople looking to keep a sale) tell me they locked in a promotional price with separate financing. I also think that going with all new cabinets is overkill (ironically, that song just came up on my iTunes playlist as I'm typing this - it's a SIGN!) so I'm thinking that we could save some $$$ by having what we can salvage refaced and replaced/add stock cabinets from Lowe's or Home Depot. We don't need custom cabinets, we're just sick of the plain oak.

My first priority has always been just to get the house "presentable" again. I'm sick of being ashamed at what Justin has done to the place and that I'm not motivated or skilled enough to tackle the whole job myself. I need to hand this off and find some other way to prove my worth. I'll do the small stuff like painting, but this whole thing has railroaded me long enough.

The rest of the quote was more manageable with a lot of it (obviously) being labor. It's still a lot of $$$ but consider that my wife's alternative was to move to a neighboring school district where the taxes are similar and the property values are higher - but so are the real estate prices. I think the people there are "uppity" though. I'm trailer trash with a kid who throws poop.
__________________
Married to Kelly, 6/19/1999
SAHD since August, 2004
Father to Justin, 2/27/2004
Father to Joseph, 3/11/2007
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 08:36 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.