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remmons 09-13-2013 09:57 AM

Recent fixer-upper home purchase.
Hello all. I haven't been on here for quite some time, there's just not enough time in the day to be every where at one time. :)

My soon-to-be-fiance and I have recently purchased a home that needs a lot of work, but has a lot of potential. It has 1377 sf in the unfinished basement and about the same upstairs. It sits on the side of a hill, and it was built in the early 80's. I have been told that it was the first house built in the Painted Hills subdivision just northwest of Vernal. It has issues, but I feel that it can be saved.

I had first repaired the roof, the old three-tab shingles were only on by staples, so portions of the roofing were literally peeled away. It had taken me four days to repair the roof and to sneak the new shingles into the existing ones. (I'm wishing that I had a roofing nailer). I am happy to report that with all of the recent rains that we have been having lately I have found no leaks. Within the next year or two I plan on replacing the roof with archetectural shingles, I personally don't care for three-tab shingles.

The previous owner had purchased many boxes of the Uni-Click floor boards and has started replacing the flooring in the kitchen and the dining room, but has not made it any further than this. I plan on finishing the rest of the house in this hardwood flooring as that one of my GF's boys has severe allergies, so we won't be putting down any carpet. We will use area rugs in select places, something that we can pull out and hose down as we need.

My GF and I have peeled all of the paneling and trims off of the walls and are currently peeling the 12"x12" accoustical celing tiles off, but I'm afraid that the old glue is not going to come off so easily. I may just have to go ahead and pull down all of the lids and replace it with new drywall. Fortunately (or unfortunately) there isn't that much cellulose in the attic, maybe 4" at the most. After the lids have been replaced I am going to blow in about 12"-15" of cellulose to meet the R-49 code, and to help cut heating and cooling costs.

There is some damages to the fascia, the gutters and the fascia has peeled off on the back side (south side) and the east side of the house. Unfortunately the 2x6 fascia board has rotted through in spots, so I will be having to peel off all of the gutter and fascia and replace all of the fascia board. I will look at the truss tails and see what condition that they are in while I'm there.

Now the good part. Since the house was built on the side of the hill, it has some issues. The foundation was done properly, for an area that didn't have soil problems. This house was built on bentonite clay, so each time that it rains or there is snow melt, the soil "swells" and migrates. Fortunately the previous owner had spent over $25,000.00 on basement repairs including over-excavating and refilling with compacted base, then poured new footers and slab. This part is now ok, but the garage on the other hand has seen better days and has not been done yet. The left stem wall (the stem walls are about five foot tall) has separated from the slab and is kicking out a few inches, so the garage door runs the risk of pulling out of the rollers. The right side has sunk about three inches or so. The previous owner had dug out a hole next to the corner and was using a 12-ton hydraulic bottle jack to force 6"x10" concrete cylinders into the soil until they hit bedrock or sandstone. Then he will jack up the foundation and rest it on these concrete cylinders. This is of course only a temporary fix. My plan in the near future is to totally tear down the garage and have the soil over excavated and refilled with a good soil and have new footers and slab poured, then I will come in and measure for trusses and rebuild the garage. It sits on a hill so only vehicles with any clearance can drive up into the garage. I am planning on having the garage lowered closer to street level.

In time I will build the basement into what we want. We will put in a master bedroom with our own bathroom with what we want for a shower and a tub on the east end, a family entertainment room on the west end, and a new wash room next to the water heater and furnace. We virtually have a blank slate to build from.

There really isn't much else to do to the house other than to replace drywall in two sections (two sheets) due to black mold, and fill in the nail holes and prep for spray texture and painting. I am currently in the process of replacing all of the faucets and lines, only because the existing ones are looking worn out, and the kitchen faucet leaks when you turn on the water. Besides, my GF wants a very nice faucet installed, a Moen with the pull out head for spraying oversized pots and such.

As for the yard, it hasn't been taken care of for over 18 months, so the grasses, weeds, and the aspen trees have taken over the yard. My plans are to pull up the dead trees, trim the good trees, remove the unwanted growth, and "tier up" the front yard so that I can level out the lawn and install etaining wall block. The deck out back will be torn down and rebuilt using treated wood and Tamko Evergrain or Trex composite decking and railing.

If anyone has any suggestions on how to save the garage, my ears are open.

nealtw 09-13-2013 05:40 PM

Sounds like you have a solid plan and a fairly solid house to work with. You might find some one that does mud jacking to correct the foundation of the garage. Or if the top half is worth saving you could jack it up and remove and lower the foundation, set it down and then lower the floor., maybe.

BridgeMan 10-01-2013 11:49 PM

Wow! Good thing you're young and ambitious. My joints started to ache, just reading what you plan to do to the place.

Sounds just like me, 40+ years ago. I wish you well.

remmons 10-02-2013 10:33 AM


Originally Posted by BridgeMan (Post 92074)
Wow! Good thing you're young and ambitious.

Young? I appreciate the compliment.:D I am a 47 yo grand-pa, and yes, my knees an my back do ache. Ambitious? yeah, but I have some great ideas on how I want my house to look, but it's still up to the other half.

BridgeMan 10-03-2013 10:16 AM

Just 47? Just a youngster, Gramps. You haven't even hit the half-century mark yet, and probably have never seen a B/W TV either!

remmons 10-03-2013 10:25 AM


Originally Posted by BridgeMan (Post 92126)
and probably have never seen a B/W TV either!

Are you referring to tle older Zenith, or Magnavox? :D Sure i've seen them, I have even owned a few of them. I also remember having only three television stations too.;)

erwabo 11-14-2013 12:01 PM

Wow, I am overwhelmed just reading all of that. We just bought a new house this past summer and there was LOTS of work to do but nothing like that. You are in the right place. Good look with least you have a plan...GREAT place to start. Hows it all coming?

remmons 11-15-2013 10:10 AM


Originally Posted by erwabo (Post 93367)
Wow, I am overwhelmed just reading all of that. We just bought a new house this past summer and there was LOTS of work to do but nothing like that. You are in the right place. Good look with least you have a plan...GREAT place to start. Hows it all coming?

It is going, slowly. With a full time job and no daylight after work time is at a premium. Last weekend I had inventory at work, so I had accomplished nothing. But this weekend I should be able to knock out all of the drywall, mud and tape, spray texture, and trim. Carpet is coming on the 23rd, so I am hoping that I have all of that done, plus painting before then.

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