As I mentioned in the last post, when we first purchased the home we thought it needed major work. The basement had such a mold issue you could smell it immediately upon entering the house. We imagined massive renovations would have to happen even before we moved in. Replacing windows, sandblasting doors...
Luckily after some research we realized that we really didn't want to replace the windows, we wanted to restore them. But the guy we wanted to use had about a 6 month backlog. So we opted to just seal the entire house in a coat of fresh paint, and hope for the best until we could get around to the restoration. Here are some before and after shots from that initial paint job, completed before we ever moved in. Efficiency and cost dictated that we actually paint over the wallpaper! Actually a builder told us the plaster might not survive removal of the wallpaper, so until we were ready for a major renovation he advised we just paint over the flowers. And that is what we did. Its amazing what a coat of paint in the right color can do for a home. As you can see the windows are amazing. Two thirds of the home gets southern sun exposure. Like I said the house also has pretty much every original detail intact. Some stained glass in the foyer, an interesting double staircase. Here is an interesting set of windows in a gable on the third floor.
After our initial paint job and drying out the basement, we moved in and immediately started work with the architects. Since moving in we've grown to love the house, and the neighborhood. It is one of the oldest neighborhoods in town, with smaller plot sizes. Our plot is about a half acre, which is larger than most nearby.
We can see about ten different neighbors' homes from our house, and we like it this way. There is a sense of community that is hard to come by.
As I mentioned, we've agonized over the scale of our project. We've wondered if we wouldn't rather just put our money into a home that already meets our needs. We even went so far as to visit another home - just for a sanity check. Turns out even if it saved us some money and the hassle of construction, we would rather be here. Hopefully we still feel this way in 5 or 10 years.
We're close to town and less than a mile from Fort Williams. Down the street is a quiet beach. There's even a sliver of a view of the channel from our yard and from the front rooms of the house.
So that's why we're doing this. Why we're willing to go through eight to ten months of construction. We like this spot and we're going to make the most of it.