Tuesday, 1 March 2011

House renovations update

So we have our gorgeous kitchen and bathroom... now its time for the lounge extension. This has involved a multitude of holes being created in all sorts of weird places. Like my craft room, and the stair way...

Anyway, the garage is attached to the house, but doesn't go the full length. Its set slightly forwards from the actual house too, so there is a square of land that we weren't going to do much with. I don't have a before picture, all I can show you is this:

Which if you look carefully enough, you can see the path going off to the left, and tons of plants. None of those plants still exist. Any of them. Not even that bush. All gone and deaded.

So the extension begins with a digger arriving, on a cold and frosty morning. Mark tells us the seat was a sheet of ice. And he had to sit on it to get it off the truck.

It looks cold. Brrr. Then the digging begins! Oh, and since I didn't mention this to begin with... there's going to be a lot of pictures :D

Mmm big pile of rubble! Apparently when you build a house, all the crap just gets shoved into the ground. Its no wonder some people find it difficult to grow stuff in their gardens...

After a big hole has been dug, concrete gets poured into the ground to create a stable footing for the walls (do I sound like an intelligent builder person? Coz I've picked this all up from Grand Desgins :P)

Queue everyone saying: "Oh all that money you just pour into the ground!". Its so true though. The foundations are one of the most expensive parts of the project.

Once thats been set, you can start building a wall.

I think I was probably one of the only people in the world who didn't know that houses have two layers of bricks, and outside pretty layer, and inside crappy looking layer. I honestly thought that cavity insulation was injected inside each brick *sigh*

Anyway... moving on... Then came the big holes in the walls. These were needed for steel thingies to support the house... whilst they removed the outside of the lounge wall to make space for the steel lintel which would support the upstairs of the house.

There was a good chance this could have gone horribly wrong... and the side of house could have fallen down. But it didn't. Happy.

After that the rest of the wall got built... and then we discovered that the measurements were wrong. The garage wall was in the wrong place. Our measurements had presumed the garage wall being in the same place as the lounge wall... so it would be a nice clean, flush wall (if that makes sense). But it wasn't. All we were planning to do was pop up some plasterboard over that wall and have a secret door (the garage is being converted into TechGeek's office/gardening tools storage area - so just pop up some plasterboard again). But no. The wall had to be knocked down, a hole dug, concrete poured in to form a footing... a new wall built. Good thing TechGeek is rich :P

But after all that, everything was fine. Ish. But I'll get to that. The roof began, and with that, the building became pratically water tight... so this could happen.

Bye bye nasty pink lounge wall! As you can see, we must be left with a little pillar, as something needs to support the steel lintel. Luckily thats where the sofas will be, so its not going to impact us in the slightest. Looks big right?

And now there are two new windows! The original window was not sealed correctly and leaked cold into the room. Plus its no longer up to building regulations as the glass isn't thick enough or some such crap. So two brand new windows.

The next issue was the lights. The ones we had fitted into the bathroom and kitchen/diner - no longer made. So we found the same but in a different colour - didn't fit our bulbs. The seller is saying we can't return them, but we will, and we will get our refund (fit for purpose - we told them what bulbs we wanted to use!). So after a little bit of excepetional genius on my part... I found the same, but in a different colour, newly updated... and on SALE! And they fit our bulbs. I iz genius!

And thats the saga up to date. Tune in next time when I will talk about some crafting. I promise. I have socks to show off!

xxx Elle xxx


  1. Man, I LOVE Grand Designs! And isn't Kevin always right when he says you should always have a contingency fund for these little unforseen mishaps? I am quite jealous of your extension :)

  2. Oh yes, dear ole Kevin is indeed correct! We do have contingency funds... only they've kinda been earmarked for new windows and a new front door! Especially a new window in the main bedroom. It can either open, and have a huge gap letting in cold air, or it can not have that gap and never open again. Rarr!



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