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Old 08-27-2013, 12:59 PM  
planner101
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Default Thoughts about floorplan and walls

Hiya,


Before anything is said, I don't have direct access to house right now because I'm in the annoying process of buying it from the bank(foreclosure).
Also, I plan on asking the inspector which are load bearings and which are not.

Here is the "floorplan" with estimations on where walls are(brown walls are beams.. white lines are walls, black lines represent doorways, green rectangle is a kitchen peninsula)..

When you first walk in, you walk into what used to be a foyer hallway.. previous owners took down two walls separating the foyer hall and kitchen from the living room. The brown lines are typical headers. They kept the walls defining the dinning room, which has doorways.. the doorways go into living room and kitchen.

I do like open floor plans, but in this house it's a little annoying they decided to tear those walls down because I don't have much usable wall space to put pictures or even a TV on. The wall in front of the house has really big windows so theres no space to put a tv on there.

My plans are to put the wall back up to separate the foyer and add closets along that wall(for linen, coats,etc)...

I would like the open the doorway more where the dinning room and living room meet to create a better flow and allow more light to pass through all rooms.
Same thing with where the wall separating the kitchen and dinning room are.. to open up that space.


This is where I don't know... because there's already a beam that runs parallel to kitchen.. I'm pretty sure the wall separating the kitchen and dinning room is load bearing... now what I can't figure out(which, I know only viewing the attic will tell me for sure) is if the wall separating the dinning and living room is load bearing. I'm thinking no, but since there is a beam that runs parallel to it, I'm starting to think maybe it is. (its a one story home no basement).

I want to take Wall 1(separating dining and living room), and open up the doorway into a shallow arch.

And Wall 2(separating kitchen and dining room), and either take out the wall(and put in a beam that is not visible) or open up the doorway making another shallow arch.


Finally my questions:

I would like some input as to cost of labor, materials, pros would be if I took out wall 2 completely vs putting in an arch? When I hire a contractor... does he do his own independent research to find out about the header.. or do I need to hire out an engineer?(I'm sure it varies from contractor, but usually what happens)?

I also just thought about seeing if a beam could be placed in the attic(not sure of the name)... so that way when I'm sure of what I want I can do whatever(either take whole wall down or make a shallow arch). If I were to do this... do call a general contractor or an engineer? And do engineers install this beam? Or do I need to hire a contractor for installation?



Hope you were able to follow along.. thanks!





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Old 08-27-2013, 07:16 PM  
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I tried to follow along but it was pretty indepth.
Let's start over. A general contractror is the guy who gets the plan drawn up, gets it passed by the city or an engineer if they require one.
You can be the general contractor in most places.
If you find contractors that look over the house and say can do this or that, they may not be looking at the whole picture.
If you find more than one contractor to do this work they will all have there own ideas on what should be done.

As you don't likely know who made changes to the house and what skills they had the first thing I would do is hire and engineer. That may sound expensive but it will save money in the long run.
You have lots of ideas and anything can be done with enough money, the last thing you waqnt to be doing is getting your plan set in stone and end up buy beams that are 7x19 or ? and digging up basement floors to put in footing.
You are better off having the engineer tell you what practical changes can be made before you draw up your plans.



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Old 08-28-2013, 02:56 PM  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nealtw View Post
I tried to follow along but it was pretty indepth.
Let's start over. A general contractror is the guy who gets the plan drawn up, gets it passed by the city or an engineer if they require one.
You can be the general contractor in most places.
If you find contractors that look over the house and say can do this or that, they may not be looking at the whole picture.
If you find more than one contractor to do this work they will all have there own ideas on what should be done.

As you don't likely know who made changes to the house and what skills they had the first thing I would do is hire and engineer. That may sound expensive but it will save money in the long run.
You have lots of ideas and anything can be done with enough money, the last thing you waqnt to be doing is getting your plan set in stone and end up buy beams that are 7x19 or ? and digging up basement floors to put in footing.
You are better off having the engineer tell you what practical changes can be made before you draw up your plans.
LOL, sorry about being too detailed.. sometimes in forums I don't write enough and people can't really give me an informed answer, so I went to the other side of the spectrum and went over board on details...only to confuse you,lol. I'm sorry.

But I see what you're saying... an engineer can give me the information that I need to do it myself or hire out a contractor.

Thanks for simplifying it for me... needed it!
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Old 08-28-2013, 08:28 PM  
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I went and saw the house today and took a look in the attic...

I found a picture online that resembles exactly what it looks like.


Does anyone know the specific name of this type of roofing so I can do more research on it?



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Old 08-28-2013, 09:01 PM  
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These are engineered trusses and to answer the next question. No you do not cut them change them or damage them in any way. If repairs are needed it must be designed and inspected by an engineer.

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Old 08-29-2013, 06:44 AM  
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Trusses carry all load on the ends where they sit on top of the outer walls. So it’s a safe bet that any walls inside the span of the truss are not load bearing.

I didn’t hear you say you had plans to change anything where the house bumps out at the back or how that roof area is framed.

That doesn’t mean there won’t be a lot of cosmetic work in removing the walls once you are sure it’s ok. The drywall on the ceiling and the flooring etc. may all need work. Cost is very difficult to guess at without really seeing all the details in person.

I don’t think you supplied too much detail more is always better. I just bought an old house on a short sale so I know what you are going thru wanting to make plans but not being able to get in and really figure it out. I ran a lot of numbers but with the assumption 99.9% of the labor was to be DIY. The house was one with really nice structure but needed some very serious amount of labor. We have taken out walls added walls doors windows along with a huge amount of ongoing cosmetic work. Also all new supply plumbing and quite a bit of electrical. If we had planned to hire it all out the math might have not been in our favor with buying it. Going the sweat equity route and knowing we could do much of it with recycled used materials whenever possible the numbers looked really good. We knew our abilities and understood our labor was free but not without the cost of giving up leisure time. In our case doing this kind of work comes close to a leisure activity so it isn’t too bad. Nonetheless time is money.

Asking about costs is really a good start but you really need to know those cost before you sign.

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Old 08-29-2013, 06:56 AM  
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Some trusses are tri bearing and girders can drop loads in strange places so it is not safe to say all barring is on the outside walls.

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Old 08-29-2013, 07:38 AM  
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Neal is correct the trusses could be tri-bearing and the center wall could be load bearing. That wouldn’t explain the areas where there isn’t a center wall throughout the run of the house though. If there is a beam at that location then for sure the truss would be tri-bearing. You will have to look above and below the wall in question. You said the house didn’t have a basement is there a crawl space to inspect for supporting structure below the wall in question. You will also have to check if that beam continues above the walls in question and below the trusses. You could have a tri-bearing truss system that is still supported by a beam and post system, and in that case the beam is support and the walls could be removed. Your inspector or engineer should have input. But once again the final cost is going to be very different depending on what he says.

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Old 08-29-2013, 10:37 AM  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nealtw View Post
These are engineered trusses and to answer the next question. No you do not cut them change them or damage them in any way. If repairs are needed it must be designed and inspected by an engineer.

I laughed when i read this because I looked up general information about roof trusses and found this guy on youtube that explained several things while continuously saying "Don't cut the trusses"... and someone commented saying.. "6mins of don't cut"..

It was funny because the guy kept saying it literally like every 3 or 4 sentences... needless to say, it has been drilled into my head.
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Old 08-29-2013, 10:46 AM  
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Originally Posted by bud16415 View Post
Trusses carry all load on the ends where they sit on top of the outer walls. So it’s a safe bet that any walls inside the span of the truss are not load bearing.

I didn’t hear you say you had plans to change anything where the house bumps out at the back or how that roof area is framed.

That doesn’t mean there won’t be a lot of cosmetic work in removing the walls once you are sure it’s ok. The drywall on the ceiling and the flooring etc. may all need work. Cost is very difficult to guess at without really seeing all the details in person.

I don’t think you supplied too much detail more is always better. I just bought an old house on a short sale so I know what you are going thru wanting to make plans but not being able to get in and really figure it out. I ran a lot of numbers but with the assumption 99.9% of the labor was to be DIY. The house was one with really nice structure but needed some very serious amount of labor. We have taken out walls added walls doors windows along with a huge amount of ongoing cosmetic work. Also all new supply plumbing and quite a bit of electrical. If we had planned to hire it all out the math might have not been in our favor with buying it. Going the sweat equity route and knowing we could do much of it with recycled used materials whenever possible the numbers looked really good. We knew our abilities and understood our labor was free but not without the cost of giving up leisure time. In our case doing this kind of work comes close to a leisure activity so it isn’t too bad. Nonetheless time is money.

Asking about costs is really a good start but you really need to know those cost before you sign.

Im going to do cosmetic things myself.. that scares me zero percentt.. what scares me are the structural things...

My father in law can pretty much do anything with homes... how it never translated to my husband beats me? lol

But he's going to help with putting up walls and all the other jazz. I'm going to get an engineer for the walls because they know about the codes and how they change and such.

But the taking out of walls won't happen until later on because I saw some suspicious DIY electrical things in the attic... so that my first major concern.


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