It’s been a productive few weeks with the old house renovation project. Demo always moves along the quickest and has the biggest impact. Eventually, I’ll share my plans/struggles/ideas for each room. For now, just try to use your imagination the best you can. Things are moving fast over here! If you don’t remember what it looked like before, you can start here.
One of the biggest wins so far is the wood ceilings under those dreadful tiles! It was a total gamble and my budget was BEGGING for there to be something usable underneath the four large rooms of ceiling tile. I really didn’t have room in budget to have to sheetrock it all, so I did all the happy dances when I found that old shiplap underneath. What’s another big win, you ask? Those tiles and the paper underneath ARE NOT filled with asbestos. Let me be honest with you for a second. The fact that those tiles could be full of asbestos never even crossed my mind until we’d yanked down half the room with no masks or anything. I sent some for testing the next day and held my breath (literally) until the results came back. Note to self: consider the possibility of asbestos when you decide to renovate the next crazy-old house.
Thankfully, no asbestos.
So far, we’ve framed up walls for the new master bath and closet, and closed in doorways that I’m walling off. If you can’t tell from the photos, I’m turning the front formal living room (or study) into a master. I’m using the back corner of the sun room as a master bath and bringing in the HVAC closet and middle bedroom closet as a nice walk-in for the master. The closet in the current master was tragically tiny and you’ll see that there was simply NO WAY I’d be able to make that work. The master bath was the pink bath, which included the washer/dryer hookups and honestly, it was my least favorite room(s) in the house. After some careful deliberation, I decided to move some stuff around and create a fantastic master and on-suite bath on the front of the house. I had to use this room as a bedroom (Otherwise, there were only two.) and it made no sense that one of the other bedrooms would have the fireplace. Now, I’ll have a master with a fireplace, killer master bath with ALL THE NATURAL LIGHT, and a big closet. I’m most proud of my plans/ideas for this part of the house.
We’ve demoed the current master bath (the pink bath) and I’m turning it into a nice sized closet for that bedroom. When doing a remodel of this sort, one has to consider future resale value. By re-configuring things the way that I am, only one bedroom will have a small closet, something pretty uncommon in a house of this age.
In addition to turning that back bath into a closet, half of that room is being converted into a large laundry room. The washer and dryer will now sit approximately where the pink tub was. By walling up a second doorway and demoing that bathroom, I’m able to use up some wasted space by the back door and create a big laundry room. Keep in mind that the previous washer/dryer were in the small master bathroom! This change is probably the second most impactful in this house.
As I think about the planning process for this project, I think about where this talent of mine came from. As a young girl, my friends always joked that you never knew what wall would be added or taken away when you came to my house. My mom had a way of seeing opportunity in a space and was never afraid to tear something out if needed. She lived in our old house for over 40 years and during that time, you wouldn’t believe it’s many transformations.
It’s important to note that she did a lot of this work herself too! I learned early how to use a hammer and a tape measure. I didn’t know that people called out plumbers and handy men until I was well into my adult years! We always did that work ourselves. To this day, I overestimate what work I can do myself because my mom always did it. I know how to fix most small plumbing problems, have repaired roof leaks, and nothing seems impossible to me. You can tell me something isn’t doable and it’ll be a while before I come around because I just don’t give up that easy. Because of this, I can walk in and immediately begin moving walls and doorways in my mind to make things more efficient or usable. It’s a skill that I’m very certain was developed and nurtured by my mother.
All in all, I’m happy with the progress we’ve made so far. It looks like a new house with every passing day and before long, we’ll be moving along to the design stuff. (Heart eyes!) The two most common questions I get right now are 1. Am I flipping it or living there myself and 2. When do I expect to be done. As of right now, I plan to live there myself and I’m hoping to be finished by the end of July, August at the latest. If we keep moving along so quickly, that’ll be no problem at all!
Don’t forget — you can catch little glimpses of progress on Instagram so be sure to follow me there!