Wednesday, October 29, 2008

House Project


Well, Alicia and I have been hard at work with the house project. We have been without any living spaces downstairs for a month, and we have now torn up the floor in the kitchen.

I'd like to mention that Casey and Graham have been a TREMENDOUS help to us in the project. Not only have they gotten their hands dirty, and helped us a ton, they have also been willing to listen and discuss COUNTLESS options, ideas, and whatnot with us. Thanks a ton to both of you!

Step 1: Demolition

Between the storm, and us choosing to replace the remaining floors downstairs, we have a lot to take out of the house. This includes:

  • Remove all carpet downstairs
  • Remove all tile downstairs
  • Remove all baseboards downstairs
  • Remove all window and door trim downstairs
  • Remove most of the drywall in the front of the house downstairs (we had this contracted out)
This is mostly complete. We are going to dispose of the removed materials this weekend. This has been a lot of work, and I'll be glad to see it go.

Step 2: Drywall Repair

The water that came into the house caused a lot of drywall to be damaged and/or moldy. This was all ripped out by Hugo! Just yesterday, he finished putting in the new drywall, as well as finishing and texture-ing it. If anyone needs drywall or paint work done, let me know, and I'll give you his contact info. He did a fantastic job at a very reasonable price.

Step 3: Paint

We have decided that now is an excellent time to paint the downstairs. We had already painted the den, so we only need to paint the formal living, formal dining, kitchen, and breakfast areas. We are going to leave the foyer the existing color since the high walls would be very difficult to paint. Hopefully we can finish painting in the next week or two.

Step 4: Level the Floors

After completing the painting, it will be time to level the floors. We will be using a self-leveling cementious underlayment available at home depot. This stuff basically gets mixed with water, poured on the floor, and within a day or two, you have a nice new level floor to install over. Fun stuff. The sixty bags, along with 20 bottles of primer, were delivered from home depot this morning!

Step 5: Install new floors

The next step is to actually install the new flooring. We have discussed and debated back and forth over which flooring to choose. Real Wood? Engineered Wood? Laminates? How much do we spend? Do we do it ourselves? What installation method do we want; float, nail, or glue?

It has taken us quite a while to answer these questions, but at the end of the day, we have decided on laminate planks. These will not only be cheaper, but they are the easiest to install, and are the most durable. Sounds like a no brainer right? One would think so, but when actually faced with the decision, it was not that easy...

We will be ordering from After we have ordered and received the floors, I'll let you all know what we think. They seem to have good prices and alot of good information, so I hope they don't disappoint us.

The floor we picked is by a manufacturer called K-Swiss, and it's a darker colored laminate.

We must have ordered 30 samples of laminates, and another twenty of engineered woods, and this is what we've decided on. We haven't actually placed the order yet, but it won't be long now.

Step 6: Baseboards and Trim

After installing the floors, it will be time to put the baseboards and window/door trim on. Now, if you know me, then you know that I can be very particular about certain things. Alicia says she doesn't care in the least what the trim looks like. I have a little more of an opinion than that...

I came across this baseboard design when browsing the web, and I really like the look of it. But $45 for eight feet?!?!?!?! I think not...

So, Graham and I put on our thinking caps. We determined we can make our own for a fraction of that cost, using some clever design, some MDF, and Graham's awesome tools! We haven't actually started yet because it's so far along into the project, but it sounds promising.

I did get in touch with Houston Hardwoods, and they can custom mill some matching this design at a very reasonable price as well, so that might be another good option. We'll decide as the time gets closer...

Step x.5: Paint cabinets?

One of the ideas we have thought about pursuing during the project is a little makeover to the kitchen cabinets. We don't particularly like our existing cabinets. Alicia hate's the color, and I hate the traditional design of the doors. What better time to take on something like this than when your downstairs is already torn to shreds?

There is no better time, and that's what we thought too...

We haven't made a decision on this, or even on exactly what we'd be doing, but it's something we're considering.


Now that I've most certainly bored you to death, assuming you were bored enough to actually read this, I guess I'll let ya go.

If anyone wants to get some good exercise and help us out, just let me know!