Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Daydreams of a homeowner

I don't know about you, but the first thing I did when I bought my house was start to dream about ways to change it. I mean we bought the house because we loved it. Well no we bought the house because the kitchen is absolutely amazing, but we liked the rest of the house too. I think though there was more love for the potential of the house, than the house as it was.

Before we moved anything inside we did some demolition and painting. The previous owners had a father who was a master carpenter and had built beautiful built in book cases everywhere. Some of them simply were not where we wanted them to be. Also the living room was a wretched shade of baby puke green that I simply could not live with. Also all the bedrooms and bathrooms were flesh tone, though those didn't get repainted until we had been in the house four years.

Of course as we got to know the house we realized that certain things needed to be changed not only because we desired something different, but because what was in place was not going to last much longer or were damaged in things like pipes breaking and roofs leaking. Flood a house with laminate flooring once, and suddenly  you are very open, and needing, of new flooring options.

I have this list that I made one day at work while I was bored. I went in my head through every room in the house and wrote down my desires. Some rooms are very simple; new paint on the walls and ceilings*, new base boards and crown molding**, new light fixtures***, and a steam clean to the carpet.

Some rooms have a little more thought put into them. Some rooms include words like re-drywall entire room, replace floors, retile, repaint, new everything. High on the list of rooms that need a complete overhaul are both of our bathrooms.

The guest bath is not too bad. It has flesh toned walls and wall paper that is beginning to peel, but the biggest problem is the gaping hole in the shower from a broken pipe repair. The shower will have to be completely retiled. I would also like to replace the vanity and over toilet storage since they were built ins from the previous owner, and really are not aesthetically pleasing.

The master bath is much worse. I almost did not buy the house because of this bathroom. It is small and ugly. The walls in the vanity area ale flesh toned. In the room with the toilet and tub they are bone white with cheap white subway tile. The vanity is so old it is about to fall apart. The mirror has a frame that was homemade with floral foam and some fabric that looks like it belonged to a dress from Little House on the Prairie.  There are these weird shelves on either side of the vanity area that are shallow and completely open which I find very awkward in a bathroom. Also the light/fan over the shower is so old that our electrician was amused by it. Oh and the toilet needs to be replaced since the guts are all faulty.

It is not a small project to fix that level of problem. I am sure we will slowly get to it one piece at a time. We are currently looking into the cost of someone coming and repairing and retiling the guest shower vs us doing it ourselves. If that is affordable or something that we find easy enough, we will retile the master on our own. Painting isn't too hard, but the walls need to be retextured thanks to a very poor job by the previous owners, but I also don't want to do that until we tear out and replace the vanity and shelves.

I've never paid someone else to do home repairs before so I am not really certain how that all works. We have always been DIY people, even from when I was just a little girl. I am not sure if the cost will justify the convenience if we could just take a weekend and do it ourselves. Although I have been less than pleased with some past DIY projects, which would make me lean toward paying someone who knows what they are doing.

It is all just a matter of time and money, both of which are always in short supply. I have my list though, and I have my day dreams. Until the day comes when I can actually fix it, I will continue to dream of what my house could be when it reaches the potential I saw in it when I bought it.

* The previous owners depopcorned almost all of the ceilings and painted or wallpapered them. Unfortunately they either used a latex paint which is now bubbling and peeling, a wallpaper glue that was cheap because it is now peeling off everywhere, or not enough pain and you can see roller marks.

** The previous owners picked the cheapest floor boards and molding they could, and it is actually missing in spots, and doesn't match from room to room. Drives me crazy.

*** The lighting in this house is screwy, and all the ceiling fans are so old that they have hit that 'sounds like the motor is full of gravel' stage when you turn them on. Plus not one light fixture in the house matches another one. I like continuity.


  1. Sounds like you're making your mark on it. I know there's always something new that I can dream up to change about my house.

  2.  The husbeast thinks I am a bit crazy any time I talk about the depth to which I have considered the improvements to our house. He honestly can't see the problem with our light fixtures not matching and he is color blind so flesh tone walls don't bother him. He is content though to let me do whatever I want as long as I am not to terribly demanding of his time, which makes us both happy.