Thursday, May 28, 2020

Renovating During the Coronavirus Pandemic

So..... we have a routine as we kick off our renovations.  The demo guys come in and we gather up anything that can be reused as they pull it out of the house.  Habitat for Humanity's ReStore comes and picks up the big stuff.  The smaller stuff that they can't use goes to Goodwill and other charities.

And then COVID came and I couldn't do any of that.

Yikes, I have a house full of stuff!!  Lots and lots of stuff!  So now what?
Enter Facebook Marketplace.  As many of you have noticed, I'm on Facebook a lot, but I really didn't have any experience with Marketplace.  It's their answer to Craigslist, but it targets people in your local area and is super easy to use.  On the advice of a friend, I decided to give it a try.

And it was amazing!!!  It's become my pandemic quarantine hobby!   (Disclaimer - I'm not trying to make any money on this - I just want to keep things out of landfills - so everything was offered for free.  It's been fantastic for free stuff) As I'm cleaning out the house, I take a photo of what's available and post it in about 10 seconds.  Typically, within 10-15 minutes I start getting inquiries and the item is gone that day.  I put it out in the driveway with the recipients name on the item.  Curbside, no touch delivery!!  Woo hoo!!

I didn't really meet these people, they just came and picked up what they wanted.  But thanks to Marketplace, they became temporary pen-pals (okay, social-media text pals).  And it was such fun!

Suppose you had the entire VHS set of Gunsmoke (more Miss Kitty than you ever remembered!!) that you need to get rid of?  Enter Facebook Marketplace.  My new Marketplace friend Joe was so excited about them, because he and the missus have a camper with a built-in VHS player.  They're always looking for something new to watch when they go on trips.  Well now they're going to have to step up their camping stays to watch them all!
Plus I found a couple other VHS tapes to keep them entertained!!  You might be noticing a theme to the former owners entertainment taste :-) 

Or Bill, who was trying to decide if it was worth filling up the truck for an hour + drive to pick up DVD's.  But he's a big western and war movie buff and when I told him there were 44 DVDs waiting for him, he decided to come on down!!!  He was happy, I was happy.  It's a wonderful thing.

There was a gal who is getting her first place and needed kitchen stuff.  I left out boxes and boxes of pots & pans, glasses, small appliances, etc. and she took it all.  Win-win!

The big appliances all went in a flash!!  They were in nice shape, so someone will get a lot of use out of them.

And then there was the gup who flips houses. He took a lot, including countertops, filing cabinets and this amazing WWII era metal desk - that I seriously wanted to keep, but had no idea what I would do with it.  It weighs a ton and has this very cool flip top - that was probably to hold a Selectric Typewriter!!!  I'm sure some of you aren't old enough to know what that is, but trust me, it was a critical business tool for many years.
Look at this beauty!  Probably weighs 200 pounds!
Vintage Corning Ware?  It was gone in a flash.
The pattern on the bottom?  1979 - the year Richard and I got married.  I still have some of that stuff!
Old bed frame, futon frame and other miscellaneous furniture?  They've gone to a new home where they'll be repainted for a whole new look.

I'm guessing we kept an entire dumpster full of material out of the landfill.  Stuff that's in new homes that are happy to have them.  COVID has made everything a bit more challenging, but this feels like a happy result!

What else has COVID changed?  Well just about everything and some habits are hard to break.  Handshakes?  Nope, can't do it.  And yet I find breaking the habit of sticking my hand out is almost as hard as not touching my face.  (but I do find a facemask helps remind me not to do that!)

Having more than one subcontractor on the premises at once?  Nope, we're trying to limit them to ensure people can work 6 feet apart.  That's sure to have an impact on our schedule, but keeping everyone safe is far more important.

We've kept a working sink so everyone can wash up with soap and water on a regular basis.  And of course we wipe down doorknobs and other surfaces on a regular basis.

Is this the new normal?  Well for the time being it certainly is.  But everyone has been supportive of the changes and staying safe is the most important thing we can do.

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