Okay, friends. The moment you have all been waiting for….or not.
Actually, a few of you have asked about our little fixer-upper, which we purchased in December. The first mention of it is here.
We got a deal we couldn’t pass up on this foreclosure, plus it was only two blocks from our house. Ryan wanted to try his hand at rental, so we went ahead and put an offer in. It was accepted.
It turned out to be a LOT of work for my husband. And, not fun work.
Most of his time was spent in the dark, damp basement. He had to reinforce all the beams in the house, jack it up and have steel beams installed for support. We also had to actually hire professionals for some jobs, which appalls Ryan.
The fun part (if you call painting and floors and lighting and cabinets fun) didn’t even begin until May.
So, I’ll begin sharing the befores and afters in a few future posts. It’s probably not quite as drastic as our house… but still pretty drastic, in our opinion. One large takeaway from this rental is that it doesn’t necessarily have to be perfect, or the best, or even what we would want. It just has to be clean, functional and practical. Oh… and cheap. With that in mind – everything in the house was done on a budget. I’ll try to highlight the budget items by placing them in green.
Thankfully, we didn’t have to do much on the outside. It had new siding, windows and roof. (Cue angels singing.) Strangely enough, the house hadn’t been lived in for at least two years. Kinda sad really. It has potential.
Someone didn’t take any photos of the outside of the house before we started working on it. I won’t say who it was, only that it wasn’t Kim. I’ll let you figure it out. I’m not bitter. At all.
Anyhoo – Here’s the afters:
What we (mainly Ryan) did:
- Added a front window (can you believe it didn’t have any window on the front porch?). Budget: This window was picked up in the bargain bin at a local hardware store, deeply discounted.
- Trimmed the front bushes, replanted plants and added mulch. Budget: We wanted this to look nice, but it wasn’t necessary for it to be perfect. So, we just took plants from the back of the house (mostly daylilies and hosta, and replanted them). They should do fine in their new home, and they were free. By adding more dirt and mulch around the foundation, water will hopefully be diverted away from the house.
- The back deck is a little ug-ly, but it does its job. Budget: Don’t fix something that ain’t broken.
The front porch had originally been open,but was at some time closed in with windows all around. When the house was sided, the inside was left the partially unfinished, insulation and all. This is silly – because this is extra living space in a rather small home.
What we did:
- Added a large coat closet for storage and shoes. This is one of the only closets in the house. Budget: The wire racks were given to us by our parents. Free is great.
- Installed track lighting to brighten up the space. Budget: Track lighting is CHEAP.
- Added an additional window on the front of the house. The space was incredibly dark, and this brings in much-needed light. Now, it’s the perfect space for a newspaper and cup of coffee.
- Cleaned the floor really well. This didn’t have to be perfect, and it was a durable vinyl. Budget: Cleaning supplies cost next-to-nothing.
- Painted all the walls and siding blue to unify the room and painted all trim white to brighten it up.
Next up – Living and Dining Room
What do you think?