Has anyone done a gut renovation?

  1. My DH and I just bought a house that we're totally gutting. Any advice for us as this is such a big project? My mind keeps wandering to that old movie "The Money Pit"...
  2. Oh boy- that stresses me out just thinking about it! We just bought a house and I'm stresseing anbout renovating the kitchen and bathroom- and my fiancee is a contractor! I'm not worried about the work, I'm worried about the mess!
  3. Good luck, I am sure the end result will be worth it. Take a lot of before and after pictures because it will be fun to see the progress made.
    Keep a sense of humor.
  4. Set a budget and a plan, and try to stick with them as much as possible. Take lots of before & after pics, celebrate your progress, and keep your sense of humor! It will all be worth it in the end!
  5. Oh man, just reading the words you posted stressed me out!!

    I have never done a gut renovation, but the house that I lived in in Maryland was under CONSTANT renovation. First we ripped out the carpets, then we painted, then we ripped out the kitchen and lived off of the Grill for a few months, then we closed in the carport and made a new living room, then we resided the whole house...and then we started on the basement and making bedrooms and stuff down there! Oohhhh boy :sad:

    Need someone to put up drywall? ;) I'm your girl!

    Will you be doing it all yourself? We did 95% of everything in our old home ourselves, except for kitchen installation and siding. Doing it ourselves wasn't so bad - the contracters were HORRIBLE though! They measured our kitchen wrong so the cabinets wouldn't fit into the room. Thank goodness my mom caught that before they were delivered!
  6. Check out the contractor with a fine tooth comb. Ask for their list of subs & their contractor numbers. Don't go for the lowest bid. Don't live there if possible, spend the money subletting an apartment. Hire an engineer to check their work. Check their work evey night. I have never see an industry full of crooks & liars like the building industry. GET EVERYTHING IN WRITING!
    We have done this twice, can't begin to tell you the problems we had. Each time we got smarter - thank GOD! We are getting ready for an expansion now & I think I'm prepared. I am finally in the house I want to die in, but I want to add on some. lol
  7. I have to agree with this 100%! Get recommendations from friends (if you have any that have renovated) and coworkers.
  8. :busted

    I'm reluctantly on a diet. Very reluctantly. Always hungry.

    I thought this thread would be about gastric bypass surgery!
  9. Ha ha, the Money Pit! I have that on DVD so we can watch it whenever we're doing a home project -- that way we keep our sense of humor!

    But seriously, my best tip is to keep a spreadsheet. I know it sounds really boring but it kept me sane. I kept a tally of all the expenses, who was doing the work, their contact numbers, and a final tally of what the costs were and how it compared with the budget. That way you are totally organized on one page and you always know where everything is.

    Good luck!
  10. Good luck to you. I wouldn't wish this on anybody. I have done this several times and it puts quite the strain on a relationship. If you can survive renovations, you will be married a long time. I also agree with not living in the home that is getting renovated.

  11. My mother told me that if DH and I survived this, (our marriage) we would be married forever...FYI-we are not living in the house as I have two children with asthma.
    Would anyone do anything differently during their reno?
  12. We're almost at the end of renovating our house, started over a year ago, some carpets and bits & pieces left to do. I was always thinking of the The Money Pit too (love that film).

    It was a total nightmare, first thing I would recommend is do not live there at the same time. We did and it was so stressful, my BF and I were arguing all the time. At one point we had no toilet or running water, there was a huge hole in one outside wall, it was snowing, I was living and sleeping in one room and my BF chose that time to go on a length business trip. I'm struggling to think of a more miserable time.

    The other thing I'd recommend if you can is to get a Project Manager to oversee the whole thing. It takes up so much time getting quotes and arranging to meet people at the house, it really is a full time job. If you're doing it yourself and you work then I hope you have an understanding boss as you'll need a lot of time off.

    Then on to budget, we didn't have one and it was a big mistake, I don't know what the final spend will be and I don't want to know. Luckily house prices are still going up and I think we'll be ok.

    Good Luck.
  13. I agree with all the suggestions, and I will add that a prescription for valium 10mg might be a good idea, too. Good luck.
  14. Will you be living at home during this or out of the house? Go over EVERY little detail. It will DEF take longer than suggested- so plan ahead for a longer process. The stress, the details, the 'hidden' disasters, will all be there.

    It will be an experience, to say the least!!

  15. Thanks for your opinion too Megs..No, we are not living there. I have two children with asthma, so there's no way. The common theme has been STRESS- too bad, I'll have to go for some retail therapy!!!