From The Back Yard

I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that today was the best day I’ve had this year. If for no other reason than because this is where I’m sitting right now, writing this post…

I may or may not have just taken a nap in my back yard. Actually, there’s no “may not have” about it… I definitely did, and I have imprints of the lawn on my body to prove it.

It was a much deserved nap mind you, because I spend the weekend diving into the long and arduous (and kind of awesome) task of filling this dumpster.

It started– because you just knew I couldn’t help myself– with tearing out the carpet in the downstairs bedroom.

I think anyone who watched the video tour of the Liberty House can agree, it was absolutely necessary for my mental health and wellbeing. I’ll have to put new flooring down in there before the appraiser comes back to verify all of this work has been done, but it’s well worth it. In fact, I’m planning to start sanding down and refinishing the floors on the main level next weekend… I was going to try and get that floor installed first and do it all at once, but it may have to be a secondary project, because I went a little crazy (shocking) and decided to hire movers to schlep all of my stuff over here in less than two weeks.

The timing may seem a little tight (especially when you think about refinishing 800 sf of floors in the meantime) but not only do I like a challenge, but my landlord agreed to let me out of my lease early if they can find another renter for the Temporary Farm House. Since there have been 3 walk-throughs in the last week, I’m hoping to be out of my contract at the end of March and being able to save on that rent check (and heating two houses) will go a long way toward some of the must-have improvements on the Liberty House. Lord knows I’m willing to put in a couple weeks of intense work to make it happen.

The truth is that the floors don’t have to be sanded and fully refinished before move-in, it would just make my life a lot easier and less dusty in the long run, so that’s the plan for now.

The two big things that I do have to tackle before move-in are heat and water. I’ve already had the experts in taking care of this little problem with the radiator pipes.

Yes, improper winterization rears it’s ugly head.

Hopefully that will be wrapped up early this week, which means sooner rather than later I’ll be able to turn the water back on again. You guys, I’m just going to keep it real and tell you that I’ve peed outside more in the last week than I have in the last decade of my life. Fellas, I know you guys get a kick out of being able to mark your territory, so to speak, but personally I’m ready for indoor plumbing again.

I’ve got a ton a fun stuff to share this week (including another video of the most disturbing thing I’ve found on the property) and as long as I get the one final document from the title company tomorrow, none of it will center around me going to jail for burning down a bank.

Here’s to an awesome week of DIY!

22 Responses

  1. Congrats.

    Can you get by with just screening the floors and recoating instead of a full sanding?

    they look nice in the pics, which I realize doesn’t mean much as to their real condition.

    1. They’re in decent shape, but I actually don’t like the color and it’s a bit inconsistent between rooms, so I’m going for a full sand and restain.

      1. So Kit – Have you thought about just hiring the floors out like you are doing with the roof? I realize its an additional cost right now but that would get them professionally done in probably 3-4 days vs. you trying to make it happen, and coordinate everything else, AND move.

        Not to mention that once you start putting the finish on you aren’t going to be able to walk on them for a couple of days during that part of the process. So the quicker it can happen the better. We had ours done before we moved in and it was so nice just to have it DONE and we could be focusing on getting our kitchen remodel done before moving in. Just a suggestion.

        1. I strongly considered it, but the prices are over $800 for the amount of flooring I have to refinish, whereas renting a sander is $45/day. With the amount of work I have to do on this place and the money I have tied up in escrow right now, I just can’t justify it. Plus, everyone is booked at least 3 weeks out, and I’m in the mood to move quicker than that!

          I’ll be doing the stain and poly early next week and if I stick to my schedule they’ll have a good 48 hours to dry before I move in.

  2. I am so excited for the DIY to come. This will be so much more fun (for me anyway) than the new build would have been. Can’t wait!

  3. Getting out of your lease early would be great! Look at all of those split pipes. So let me ask do you also have some water damage from those radiators? I don’t remember seeing any in the video.

    1. You would have thought there would be some, but nothing that I saw. When we originally dewinterized the house to check the pipes it was like a fountain in every room, but we cleaned it up fairly quickly and I haven’t seen anything else. The worst water damage was from the leaky skylight in the master bath!

  4. 1. Glad to see the dumpster. 2: The photos of the pipes give encyclopedic definition of the word: “ruptured” (ouch!). 3: Still don’t know what you’re going to do with all those bedrooms? Answer: Kids & Grandkids.

      1. Roofing crew is coming to tear them out and re-roof next week, so that should solve it!

  5. Oh those split pipes bring back memories! The previous owners of our house decided to use small electric heaters in every room instead of fixing the heating lines…fortunately we had them fix the heating system prior to closing.

    Your house/property is what I always envisioned buying for our “forever” home – so jealous!

    1. I’m still in shock that I found this place and that I get to keep it! Of all my houses this one feels the most like “home” and I don’t even live there yet.

      1. I hope this is your forever home. It gets much harder to fix up a place and then move on as you get older… Hence I mostly just fix up my rentals now and try and make a neighborhood improvement. And I still have one move ahead of me at some point, so my grand plan for my current house has had to be adjusted. Which is kind of hard emotionally and mentally. So hunkerdown there if you can. Looks like plenty to keep you busy for years!

  6. Way to go, Kit! If finances permit, I’m with KC on having pros come in and just get the floors DONE! Those pipes are a “sight” to behold!

  7. Oh, please do a tutorial of your floor refinishing! I want to redo my floors badly. I’ve been doing lots of research, but your tutorials always add some tip or tidbit I couldn’t get anywhere else.

    1. I second that request! I’m gearing up to refinish two rooms probably in April during some vacation time — I’d love to see another tutorial.

  8. I hope you get a good sander. I made the mistake of using an orbital sander from Lowes that uses 3 orbital sanding pads at a time. A job that should have taken only 2 days of sanding took a full week and about 300 sanding pads.

    Good luck on your floors.

  9. Love this house kit. I know, this is kinda after the fact, and I have not caught up with all that you have done as I am reading your blog from beginning to end. But, by any chance, did you take a peak up under all that subfloor and see if the original floors may still be under there? And if they are, they may be good old wide board hard pine, which is what those old houses usually had. Just a thought.. albeit late.

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I'm not interested in a mediocre life. I'm here to kick ass or die.