Thursday, July 13, 2017

Our Fixer Upper

We sold our beloved home back in January 2017, and purchased our "dream home" located on nearly 2 acres with gorgeous mountain views.

The only hitch, it was in BAD shape. The family who previously lived in it filled it with 6 kids and 4 dogs over the course of nearly 20 years, and lived in it HARD.

We debated what to tackle first.

↣The Carpet (a lovely shade of emerald green and molded to the subfloors) was our top priority.

↣The Kitchen (broken knotty oak cabinets, green Formica countertops, and no storage)

↣Paint (a purple shade of gray)

↣Entertainment Center (off center and honey oak)

↣Wall Removal in Kitchen

↣The Basement (it was finished but needed a remodel, especially the bathroom, and a wall removed)

↣The Laundry Room


↣Paint Exterior

↣Outside Landscaping


I can't even begin to tell you all of the others that needed to be addressed. In time. We purchased the home in "as is condition", meaning the seller wouldn't fix anything for us prior to closing; and our inspection report was pages and pages long. This home is our forever "fixer upper".

The original plan was to tackle all of the flooring issues. Every square inch of flooring needed to be replaced, like, yesterday. This included the 1,900 sqft basement. The cost alone we needed to replace the flooring was going to be 20K, easily. Insane. That was going to leave us with very little wiggle room to do anything else we wanted.

By the grace of God, James and I were able to get a date night. As were sat alone at dinner we were able to think and talk clearly. James threw out the idea that we would be able to do a kitchen reno if we decided to nix the basement, for the time. Honestly, I don't know why we hadn't thought of. We had been so focused on the floors.

Before we moved in our priorities then became:

↣Leave the basement as-is, just have it cleaned.

↣Floors on the two upper levels.

↣Paint all the walls and 2 of the orange (yep) ceilings.

↣The Kitchen

But he's a Genius. We decided to look into replacing all the cabinets in leu of painting them (knotty, flat panels would look cheap had we painted it). So the hunt was on for a new kitchen (a girl's dream come true). We quickly learned that we could spend $60K without blinking. This was not an option. We turned to IKEA. People, I don't care what you've heard or thought about IKEA cabinets, but they are INCREDIBLE. They come with a 25 year warranty, and are incredibly engineered. I was able to customize my kitchen and get it perfectly designed for our family.

The day we closed on the house the demo began. We ain't got time to waste! We were living with James' parents while we did our major renovations (what a blessing they are). We hired a contractor to help us take out a wall that separated the kitchen and living room, and we did that first thing!

The house was in such disgusting shape, I have to show you what laid under the carpet. This is a huge reason for me deciding to add hardwood on nearly the entire main level.

Barf. I have never loved my Shop Vac as much as I did during our process. The most major thing (aside the kitchen) we decided to do ourselves (with the help from a few family and friends) was install the hardwood floors. It saved us $20K. The home had some original oak that was in BAD shape (shocking, I know). We worked our butts off to save and restore it. I'll go into the floor process more at a later point, but for now, know it was the worst thing we've done to date. I adore construction and doing things myself, but this was rough. We had to feather in the new with the old, install the new wood, add shivs to fill gaps, use wood fill on the entire floor, sand, stain, and poly. This process alone took us 3 weeks.

While the process was exhausting, it was totally worth it. It's gorgeous. Glorious.

Then it was onto bathroom flooring, and the kitchen. The kitchen was shockingly easy to build and install. It was a solid 3 day process, but for $5K, you can't beat it! The previous kitchen had a tiny island and no stage (no pantry, people). We added a 6 ft island and tall cabinets creating lots of storage. 

The before and after is always good to see. All of our work, coming to fruition.

While this entire process (we also redid 2 of the bathroom floors), took us about 9 weeks. Oh, and there was that pesky flood (I'll talk more about that later). But after 9 weeks we were able to move in. It was 3 weeks more than we expected, but hey....that's not bad.

Oh, and our countertops are dreamy.

Our list is still SO LONG. But it's now very livable, and lovely. More to come on all of our DIYs, oh and that freaking flood.......