House


My house renovation project seems to have hit another activity period.

This weekend was surprisingly productive. I’d ordered a six meter square skip for Saturday, the second one so far, and with the help of hippygeek had finally gotten rid of the pile of concrete, bricks, old floorboards, bits of kitchen cupboards and mouldering carpet that had been sitting in the front yard for the last five or so months, since the last activity spurt. To my surprise, a fair amount of the carpet had actually decomposed. So, now I have a cleared front porch and an empty front yard, devoid even of lawn.

I’d also had a builder look at fitting in the double door jams for two pairs of double doors which have been leaning against my kitchen wall for the last three or so months. I’d originally intended for only one set to be fitted but he was so reassuringly competent and confident that I promised him I would get rid of the last of the lathern plaster in the rear living room wall so he could fit in the second pair. After all, the skip was there and it looked like there would be ample space after the front yard was emptied.

Unfortunately, my estimation appeared incorrect, the front yard pile took up the whole skip except for a small part at the end, roughly a meter cube of space. After a bit of dithering, I went ahead and started taking the plaster out anyway, I figured that I would take down meter wide strips until the rest of the skip was full.

Four hours later at around 7pm or so, the whole rear wall is in the skip, most of the house, including myself, is covered in fine plaster dust and I’m finding it difficult to look at the skip without an absurd feeling of accomplishment.

Now that the housing bubble looks like its deflating at about the same rate as my starry eyed ideas of being a handyman and learning lots of DIY, I’ve been beset by doubts about buying this place. I havent helped matters by masochistically continuing to look at real estate listings and discovering that fully renovated places are starting to approach what I’ll end up paying for this place after my own renovations are complete (if ever).

But looking at the skip and the kitchen wall, the empty front yard, the porch, the big pile of rotting lillypilly branches in the back yard, I felt that if I had bought a house I didnt need to do anything to, while I wouldnt feel the constant background anxiety of constantly having things that need to be done and organised and built, I wouldnt also be feeling this good either when something actually gets done.

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