26 May 2007

Before & After

Some Photos & Explanations of Photos Below of our 1902 Craftsman Bungalow before/after renovation.
These are unfortunately in no particular order, trying to organize the photos was for some reason really really complicated and I didn't want to spend any more time on it. Here is a photo of the side of the dining room prior to putting in vinyl windows and painting the house.

Here is our dog Eleanor checking out the "new" backyard. This patio area was added as well as the fence and rock border around the edge of the fence. We love it since we now have a place to barbeque.
Here are some new beds that we fixed last summer. They just sort of were filled with weeds. Here we transplanted some ferns from the front of the house, added a border and put in a few bricks for embellishment.

Abe looking at our "new" future house. Front beds are overgrown and messy!
The two photos shown here display the house before our actual mortage was even finalized. The tree you see on the left took up the whole left side of the yard and there were many many plants that were overgrown, neglected and creeping up to the house. Unfortunately the large tree you see on the right was in a neighboring lot and it has been since cut down.

This top photo shows some salvage bathroom stall doors that we got from the local ReStore here in Bellingham. If you look on the left you'll see the old cement walkway and nasty yard by the back door. The right shows the new and improved with a nicer new patio, rock border and freshly painted doors.

In honor of both the 4 year anniversary of buying our house and the eve of beginning a major renovation to it, I wanted to share a few photos of the before and after (sort of during) process. When we bought our 1902 "fixer-upper" we had to do some major renovations to it to make it both livable and insurable. Luckily we had about a month to do these renovations and boy were they major. Here is a list of just some of the things we did during that very busy month (in no particular order):
  • Took off the chimney (it was leaning off the house and had to be removed for insurance purposes)
  • Ripped ALL of the carpets (even the ones in the kitchen) out!
  • Took out a "dead"-aka not working-gas furnace
  • Sided, insulated and drywalled the area where the previous fireplace/chimney and gas furnace had been
  • Ripped/Gutted the entire kitchen
  • Put an all new sub floor in the kitchen/bathroom/laundry area
  • Moved the hot water heater
  • Replaced ALL the plumbing
  • Built all new cabinets and installed them into the all new kitchen
  • Put all new flooring in the kitchen/bath/laundry
  • Painted the bathroom, kitchen, bedroom, dining room and living room
  • Had a new brick hearth put in
  • Attempted to sand the floors
  • Chopped and trims dozens of overgrown limbs
  • Ripped off the roof of the garage, put all new trusses and roofing on, built new garage doors
  • Added gutters on garage & house
Wow....now that I write it it seems like a very overwhelming list if someone had told me I'd have to have worked on all of those things! Since then we've done a lot of projects which probably equal the length of the list above but we've spread those projects out over a lot more time. Since we bought our Craftsman Bungalow we've had plans to add on to make the place a bit more livable for us (and family) in the future. We never really had an exact idea until last fall. My husband came up with the brilliant idea to lift up our house and add a daylight basement. This would keep the architectural style of our house the same, ensure that we still kept a spacious back yard and keep the relative lines of the house the same. We looked at a lot of older homes in our neighborhood that had had some really funky add ons done over the years and we didn't want anyone (including us) to feel that way in the future about the "new" house. So, here we are, ready to embark on a big project that seems equally as looming as the long list above. In short, our plans are to go out the back of the house about 8 feet, add a mud porch, 1/2 bath and stairwell to access the "basement." Our current kitchen, bathroom and laundry area will be remodeled to be a larger and more inviting kitchen. The daylight basement will have a full bath, 2 bedrooms and a large family room with linen closet. Our little 550 sq foot 1 bedroom and 1 bathroom house will be a 3 bedroom 1 and 1/2 bath 1200+ square foot home. Still modest by today's standards, the place will accommodate a growing family and visiting relatives.

So, lots of big decisions. It is nice to live in a little piece of history and I love the Craftsman style and special features.

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