Demo Day One
We closed on the new (old) house on the 28th. All of the sleepless nights and planning were done and the work started. Going with a contractor was the best decision we made. We hired David from M2 Construction who sent a team of guys to get the demo started just shortly after we closed.
I’ve told you about the third floor carpet and how the former owners had dogs who apparently never went outside. As you might have guessed, that was the first thing to go! The M2 guys jumped right in and got the carpet and pad pulled up and in the dumpster. The smell didn’t diminish immediately, and still not completely, but is definitely better than it was. You can see the floors have a ways to go- but getting it cleared out was imperative.
Turning on the Gas
The gas company sent a guy out to turn on the gas. He got it turned on and discovered the pressure test showed there must be a valve inside the house that’s not shut off. They searched, and searched, and guess what? No open valve was found. Consequently the gas could not be turned on. Turns out only the fireplaces and range use gas in this house. The HVAC and dryer are both electric so we didn’t technically need gas throughout the house. We are having a dedicated line run from the meter to the kitchen range so I can have a gas stove. We’ll just do inserts in the fireplaces to give the appearance of a nice fireplace. They make them look pretty authentic these days, so I’ll deal.
The water company came out and got the water turned on. We were filled with anxiety worrying about leaks everywhere. The first problem was when the water was turned on and no water was coming out any of the faucets inside the house. Our M2 guys jumped in and went to trying to figure out why. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention, it’s raining the entire time this is going on. We’ve got the cut off meter on the side of the house dug out (and it’s filling with water from the rain) so locating the valves was trying.
A local plumbing contractor (a wonderful guy) stopped by to lend his expertise (even though he was working on another job). He came over on his lunch hour and figured out that it was the city meter that wasn’t working. YAY! It’s not our responsibility. The water department had guys out lickety split to fix that issue. So this was my hopeful view from the front porch.
Finally, we got water coming into the house. We tried opening some faucets but there was very little pressure. That’s because the water started coming THROUGH the house. Seems the house leveling may have moved some pipes. The third floor bathroom tub’s pipes must have shifted because it started raining in the stairwell. It was the end of day one and we had to settle for just shutting off the water at the main valve. This fix would have to wait until day two.
The Nice Surprise
I was pretty close to tears by the time the gas guy left and the water disaster happened. I wasn’t really considering solutions, but honestly, The Mean Man was very encouraging. He truly made me feel better. We were getting ready to head back to the other house when we stopped in the parlor to look at a bump out in the wall. The realization struck that the bump out there is right in line with the chimney on the top of the house. We thought maybe there was a fireplace there so we started tearing down the paneling. I was so happy to find not brick, but beautiful shiplap! Actually, there is brick behind the shiplap but I’ve decided not to expose it.
We pulled more paneling back an discovered more gorgeous shiplap all around the room. I was thrilled to find it and it gave me a nice warm feeling to end the evening before we drove back the other house. It’s so exciting to think about how beautiful it’s going to look when all revealed and painted!
I’ve come to realize that this is going to be a journey of ups and downs. The most important thing is to not let the downs dominate and concentrate on the nice surprises and how blessed we are to own this house. I’m coming to realize that there will likely be as many downs as ups; especially in the beginning. I just want to be honest with y’all about the journey. It’s definitely not a sprint but a marathon!