People have always told us that buying a house is basically like signing up for a never-ending project! Well we’re just starting that project and we keep seeing things we would like to fix or update. Our house renovations are still on going but we’ve made some progress and even done some of the work ourselves! We’ve still got a long way to go before we’re satisfied for now. We want to get it to a point we’re we can stop for a little bit and just enjoy our place and maybe just do some small things or maintenance. During this entire process we’re learning a lot and also seeing our money fly away pretty quickly.
It’s been pretty stressful and a lot of hard work fixing up our place. I’m lucky that my husband has been taking care of dealing with contractors and letting them into the house. We haven’t moved into our house and still live in our apartment. My work place is only a few minutes away from the apartment while his is halfway to the house. It makes a lot more sense for him to drive to the house obviously than for me. He’s definitely going to be very happy once we’re done fixing up the house!
This weekend we actually were able to do some work ourselves! We had asbestos experts come in to take down the not so lovely popcorn ceiling properly and then a handyman to fix up other parts of the house. The ceilings were drywalled, we had some wood paneling taken off and drywalled, and the bathrooms and lights were updated. Hire painters cost a good amount and was one thing we felt we could do ourselves. It felt like we took on almost too much when we got to it though! It took us the entire weekend to prime and paint all the ceilings that were drywalled. The majority of the house other than the kitchen needed it. We’re pretty happy with the end result though and we were able to save a ton of money on it!
We’re learning how to look at renovation and house fixes in a different way to see what’s possible and what we can save money on.
Do what needs to be done first
There are a ton of things that we can do to our house but we’re taking care of major items and essentials first. I wish we had a ton of money and could just update or fix everything possible but of course that’s not going to happen. We’ve had to pick and choose what we get done now before moving and what we can do later on. It’s hard to sometimes decide on what you really want done first but if you look at it in a more practical way it usually works. Anything that is easier to get done before moving we’re trying to do now. Everything else can wait.
Always ask for alternatives
There are always a few ways to fix up or renovate things. One wall of our living room had wood panels that had been painted over white. The wood paneling even extended to the doors in that wall and it was done so that the doors blended into the wall! When it came time to deciding on what to do with the doors with wood paneling we were presented with the option of just replacing the door. Hollow doors cost about $35 each and are simple to install. One door though was an odd size and later on it was decided that it was best to just fill in the wood paneling. We ended up with two doors being entirely replaced and one being filled in. If we had known we could fill in the wood paneling we would’ve just done that instead of replacing the doors.
If possible do it ourselves
Painting the ceiling was extremely hard work and took the entire weekend. By the end we were barely able to lift our arms without grimacing in pain. We took the time and effort to do it though and I’ll have to say the ceilings look great! Might need a bit of touch up in the last room we painted but overall pretty good. There are a ton of other things we’re also hoping to do ourselves. For example adding crown molding to the ceilings and to the doors. Something we’ll need a power tool for but I’m sure we can do it!
We’re progressing slowly but we’ll make it! This week the hardwood is being refinished and stained and that will be the last of contractors for a while! We’re intending to paint the rooms after that so that will be more fun for us. The ceilings are the hardest to paint though so we did get that out of the way already.
What do you want to do for your never-ending project?