Saturday, September 13, 2008

Why My Mind Has Been Wandering Overtime - Part 1

Pre-Preliminary Information: We purchased a large old farmhouse about 7 years ago. Parts of it had been re-done and other parts had not. We purchased it with the intention of growing into it and never, ever moving again! We have put in a new septic system, converted our water system to using our pond for our water source, roofed the house and garage, and several other things like this over the last 7 years, but haven't really had a chance to do much to the aesthetics or living area of the home.

Preliminary Information: The house has a full, but unfinished basement that is full of your typical bugs, dirt, boxes of junk, laundry area, etc. The walls are starting to deteriorate and there is a large crack going around almost the entirety of the basement at ground level (not all of the basement is underground). Sometimes when it is especially wet out, water seeps through the cracks and leaves mud on the walls and there is one part where the crack is big enough that you can see directly outside and I believe the cats coax little mousey creatures in to play....

Original Plan: We have always had the intention of finishing the basement and using it for living area and just generally making it a lovely place to be, but the options started dwindling when taking into account the structural problems down there with the walls.

Interesting Idea: We had a friend of ours (also a contractor) come and take a look and one of his suggestions was to actually lift the house, tear out the basement, and re pour a whole new basement. Are you insane? Is that really possible? Turns out it is and he steered us in the direction of those that can make it happen.

Logistics: Turns out we need to have someone lift the house, have someone excavate the basement and then pour the new basement, someone to redo the plumbing & electrical in the basement, along with various other odds and ends. And that is all before we actually finish the basement with drywall, flooring, etc. etc.

Further Complications: We decided that this would also be the perfect time get a new furnace since ours has just been limping along since we moved in and while we are at it, tear out the chimney that we would no longer need and use the space to try and fix the airflow to the upstairs so that we can actually get the second story of the house at a comfortable temperature year round. So, we need someone for Heating and Cooling too. Oh, and we have a large deck that goes around half of the house that we will need to tear out. I really want to replace it with a pretty composite deck, but that will have to wait for a few years until we recover from this.

Current Plan: We have been getting estimates, going over figures, praying, pondering, deciding, and we finally decided last night to go for it. We are going to finish our basement in a very complicated and round about way.

Current Hurdles:
We have talked to Mr. House Lifter and Mr. Concrete Man and they are conferencing this weekend on whether it is feasible at all to attempt this still this year...
Did I mention that we will have to be out of our house (with our 2 cats) while this is being done and it may take up to a month and we don't have a plan for that right now?

This is partly why my mind has been wandering more lately. I will keep you posted!

1 comment:

Rebecca said...

Oh Jenny,
My brain continues to hurt with yours.
However, I do believe it will work out beautifully.
Love you,