Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Cozy Cottage - The Game Plan and the 'Wow Factor'

As you saw from the previous post, there's not a lot of wiggle room on this project.  We want to make it beautiful, but in order to keep it affordable for a future buyer and still have a little profit, we can't get too crazy on spending (and I'm really good at spending!).

Tape holding window panes in place
So.....we went through our usual list of wants and needs (click here on How to Start a Whole House Renovation).  As always - safety, security and energy efficiency go to the top of the list.  And there are a lot of things in that category.  Namely new roof, new heating system, basement waterproofing, electrical (the outlets are only ungrounded 2 prong), new windows (single pane, some held in with strapping tape) and insulation. Yikes, those are big budget items!

And of course we want a beautiful new kitchen and new bathroom - again, expensive projects.

But to my mind, the real bang for the buck in this house, is the living space.  By eliminating the wall between the living room and kitchen, we can get a room that looks and feels bigger.
Look at all this attic space!  
And even better, by ripping out the ceiling and going up into this attic space, this can be a WOW.  This will give us 12 foot ceilings in the center of the room!  What a difference!

But it's not easy.  We had a structural guy come take a look and to do that, we need to install a new ridge beam and new joists - essentially creating a whole new truss system.  While we're at it, I'd like to add a skylight, to brighten up the room and provide some additional ventilation.  Those changes would make this the biggest single ticket item of the whole project.

And I think it's worth every penny! While it's not a big house, this will make it feel much larger and give a sense of drama very few houses in this area have.  That will be the 'Wow Factor', as you walk through the front door.  And I can't wait to put a brand new kitchen in that space!

Of course, we'll make some other changes as well - like adding a bigger window into the small bedroom, to provide more light and a view into the backyard.  We'll also build a small front porch, to give the house some additional curb appeal.  Not to mention the big ticket items at the top of this post.  Oh....and I'm still noodling the idea of finishing some space in the basement.  See, this is why I always overrun the budget!!  There are so many ways to spend money!
We will expand this bedroom window, to provide light and a view to the backyard
So for now - we have a game plan!  And I'm pretty excited about it.  We've scheduled the demo crew and the framers and will start right away.  Stay tuned!

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  1. Have been so looking forward to your vision! Once again you do not fail!!

  2. Just wondering.........what are the outside dimensions of the house and will you fit in stairs to the basement? I'm really looking forward to seeing what all is done with this house!

    1. I think it's roughly 30 x 25 feet. And we already have a nice staircase to the basement, behind the kitchen wall. I keep thinking about that basement.....there's a lot of nice square footage down there!


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