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Operation Renovation – Kath Eats Actual Meals


I’ve some residence updates for you a couple of residence renovation we’re planning and why we’ve determined to not transfer! 


I really like , juicy residence put up!

They’re my favourite kind of posts to learn from different bloggers. So right here’s the place we’re heading. 

For the reason that day Thomas moved into this home, we’ve been speaking about our long-term home plan. When you didn’t know, Thomas and his dad are common contractors at their firm, Solar Buildings, the place they do customized residence renovations and new builds. Naturally, it looks like Thomas ought to construct his own residence sometime, proper? 

Thomas truly did purchase and renovate a fixer higher as his first home. He did a lot of the work himself, together with a brand new kitchen, roof, and plenty of beauty modifications. It was a cute two-bedroom cottage that he a lot improved from when he purchased it. 

The backstory on our present home

I purchased this home in January of 2015 from an investor who flipped the home from out of state. I purchased it primarily for its location within the coronary heart of Charlottesville’s historic neighborhood. But additionally as a result of my “common homebuyer” eyes noticed new paint, new kitchen, new loos and was bought. It additionally has a ton of area and storage. I’ve beloved residing right here! 

Flip on a Finances

When Thomas moved in, he identified among the renovation’s shortcomings. A mediocre paint job, cheap home windows, tile and fixtures that simply aren’t actually our fashion. For sure, the home was renovated on a price range to maximise the flip and never as somebody’s perpetually residence. 

Right here is the deck off of our main bed room that we’d NEVER let a toddler on as a result of it’s so unsafe. It’s wasted area that we by no means use. (That’s an previous hammock stand in the course of it). The deck is pulled up as a result of it was leaking under, and the railings are warped. 

We’ve Performed Tons Of Small Updates (and a Few Massive)

Over time we’ve regularly up to date some vitality environment friendly issues (Thomas put in three new doorways himself) and naturally there’s our screened-in porch that he constructed to interchange the “new” deck that was already warped and falling aside. We’ve additionally added a canine patio, a brand new youngsters toilet self-importance, fuel hearth, and completed a health room within the backside nook of our basement.

The Round Dialog We Have On The Common

For years we’ve had the identical dialog again and again:

  1. Let’s purchase land and construct
  2. The place would we do this?
  3. Kath: I don’t wish to stay within the nation
  4. Thomas: this location/view/neighbors are nice
  5. Each: okay we’ll simply keep right here for now

The place Would We Construct?

Somebody simply paid $700k for a home two streets away from us and BULLDOZED it. That’s how in-demand land on this metropolis is! If we wish to construct a home, we’d must drive for it. This was beneath dialogue for some time, till final summer season once I needed to drive each youngsters to camp. I spent 45 minutes within the automobile twice a day and HATED. IT.

I actually hate driving; I actually love strolling. Being in a walkable space is on the very high of my precedence listing – much more than constructing our dream residence. In order of final summer season, constructing within the nation was off the desk. 

OK, Then Let’s Discover A Fixer Higher?

We began to contemplate shopping for a fixer higher on the town and renovating it. However then the housing market went nuts, and this concept fell off the listing.

Whereas there would possibly nonetheless be an opportunity that we discover the right fixer higher and transfer in that course, it appears unlikely given the market. And particularly once we take into consideration promoting our home and the prices concerned (getting it prepared for market, realtor charges), it appeared to make extra sense to simply do one thing with this home to make it much more of our personal. 

One more reason we’re not loopy about shopping for a fixer higher is as a result of we love our home’s view. Despite the fact that our yard is sloped, the view is solely unbeatable. We love the privateness we’ve got being so up excessive.

If we purchased a fixer higher with a street-level yard, we may simply haven’t any view plus neighbors wanting down on us. Thus, we’d find yourself being actually choosy in regards to the setting of the fixer, making one we like even tougher to search out.

We additionally love our neighbors!!! Once more, this home has such location. It’s walkable to each youngsters’ faculties, walkable to downtown, and 5 minutes from all the things. 

OK, Then Let’s Renovate THIS home

And that is the place the dialog has landed. We’ve enlisted the assistance of an architect to assist envision how we may reimagine our major ground to be extra of what we’d like for the long-term. Our plan is to enter the one-car storage and broaden the primary ground and in addition add a dormer to our bed room. 

On the want listing for downstairs:

  • A bigger customized kitchen with an island
  • A real mudroom with numerous storage
  • A walk-in pantry
  • Set-down area  
  • Higher move from kitchen to residing areas
  • Doable small aspect porch

On the want listing upstairs:

  • Add a dormer off the again to brighten up the first bed room
  • Lengthen the roof and add unfinished attic storage over the falling-apart roof deck we by no means use (most significantly, this can shield and insulate the completed area under it)
  • Replace our toilet finishes and presumably add a dormer there, too
  • Presumably change our closets to make them just a little bit greater and add a wall for our mattress

The tremendous darkish again wall of our bed room

The view our bed room may have if we had home windows!

Making This Occur

We understand we’re INCREDIBLY lucky to be ready to make this occur. To begin with, we’d not be doing this if Thomas wasn’t the builder! That may save us cash and in addition permit us to be as versatile as doable.

Second of all, if the housing market wasn’t loopy, we in all probability wouldn’t have though to customise this home.

Third of all, we hope to have the ability to donate and/or recycle as a lot as we presumably can from the prevailing kitchen/toilet cupboards, and so on.

The Finances

Realizing a reno or residence swap was on the radar, earlier than rates of interest went up we did a cash-out refinance from the fairness that’s in-built our residence over time. I’m VERY glad we did this once we did now that rates of interest have practically doubled!

We figured we may all the time make investments that cash if we modified our minds. We had paid the mortgage down fairly a bit (from the proceeds of Thomas’s first residence) so there was a number of fairness to play with. So primarily the home is paying for its personal renovation. 

Our price range would possibly restrict what we will truly do on our want listing. Our architect first really useful a small addition off the entrance, in entrance of the storage, to make sufficient area for a real eating room.

We crunched a number of numbers and realized that was in all probability out of the price range to do, even with Thomas’s staff doing the challenge. So we’re attempting to work inside the footprint of our home and “work smarter, not tougher” inside. 

Seeing how we felt in regards to the eating room on this spot. We determined to depart it related to the lounge to make room for a correct mudroom. 

The place and When?

The plan is to begin rather less than a 12 months from now. We’ll positively have to maneuver out for about 6 months. 

There was a sizzling second once we thought we may transfer into the basement, which is able to largely keep untouched, and we remembered we’ve got two youngsters and no kitchen down there and that was a tough what are we pondering!? (If it have been simply the 2 of us we’d positively think about that.)  

We truly simply discovered a rental residence in our similar neighborhood and have it reserved for March – August of subsequent 12 months. It’s furnished so that may assist with all of the transitions too. It’s quaint however has the right area for us (3 bedrooms) and might be so good to nonetheless be near the boys’ faculties. 

Shifting Ahead

Whereas we’re shifting ahead with this plan, issues may positively change! We may discover a dream lot or have a monetary or architectural purpose why the reno falls by way of. I’ll share extra as we get nearer to the time. However as all the time, I wished to convey you alongside for a glimpse into our life!



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