|Ramblings of a madman.|
So I need to start off by addressing the reader who has me blocked, yes, it was about you. I have the same problem from my phone and the laptop. When I try to reply to your notes, or go to your OD, I get an error saying "The author has blocked your access to this page." Has someone else had access to your computer?
So I just got off the phone with my friend, K, from Texas. It was a good call. She's working 7 days a week, AND she's going to school, she's living with a friend of her's and her friend's boyfriend, and they all get along perfectly. She's quit some of her bad habits that used to worry the crap outta me, she's away from her asshole ex, she's gained some weight back (she was under 100lbs. I told her tonight it worried me when I saw her last because she looked anorexic.) and she sounds happy. Normally, when I talk to her, I can still hear stress and sadness in her voice. Tonight I didn't. This made me happy. She's still wanting to come up and see me on her break. I'm just hoping I'll be in the house by then, so we'll have more room than we would have here. This also means I need to buy another bed. Hellooooo Craigslist! LOL!
So I went up to look at the house again today, as my realtor had a general contractor come by to check out some things that my inspector pointed out. One of the issues was with the foundation piers and some damp soil in the crawl space. The house is 70 years old, and hasn't fallen in due to any earthquake activity yet. Looking around the crawlspace, I saw a few things that concern me, but the realtor is going to get another contractor's opinion.
Another issue deals with the siding. The house was re-sided in the 70's or 80's with a material that is now known to be a problem if not properly maintained. Anyone who knows anything about houses should know what I mean by OSB (Oriented Strand Board). For those who don't, OSB is basically wood chips laid out and glued together in layers, similar to how plywood is made. The problem with OSB is that it cannot take a wet environment well. Guess what Seattle is. LOL! Well, this siding is made out of OSB, essentially. Now, when I saw the house, I had already decided that was one of the things I knew I wanted to replace, long before I knew it was a problem. Most houses in the area are the same age, and have older ship-lap siding, using horizontal planks, where one plank overlaps the one below it. I'm going to use a product called Hardie-Plank, which is a wood-fiber board that is infused with cement. This makes it resistant to bugs, moisture, and to a certain extent, fire. After I pull the old stuff off, and add a layer of house wrap (Tyvek if I and budget it), this is what I'll be putting on.
Another issue is roof moss. If you're from or in the Seattle area, you're familiar with this fuzzy plant pest that invades your roof and side walks and sometimes even yards, unless kept in check. On this house, it was not kept in check on the garage roof. It's gotten so bad, I will have to replace the entire garage roof. But research tells me that I can put on a metal roof, which I like anyway, and the moss can't take hold of it, thus no more moss problems. Unfortunately, this much moss means I am going to be ripping off the entire roof down to the framing. New plywood decking, eco-friendly pressure treated plywood to be exact, 1/2" - 3/4" thickness instead of contractor chosen 1/4", new felt paper, and then the metal roofing. Problem is, I haven't decided if I want to do a standing seam roof, old fashioned corrugated, or the kind of ribbed steel like you see on metal buildings. I also have to talk to the city and see if I can add 12" overhangs to the gable ends of the garage and the house. The house currently has no overhangs at all, which I really don't like. I don't like how it looks, and it also allows water to roll right off the roof and down the walls, contributing to a possible moisture problem with the walls... oh wait... it already has... that's why the inspector dinged it for the siding. LOL! Once I have this figured out, then I can start stock-piling materials. When I re-do the roof, I won't leave the exposed rafter tails either. I'll close in the soffits with the same Hardie material that I'm using on the siding. Same reasons here that I'm using it for siding.
There's also a dish washer with a clogged drain, or a drain problem, that I have to fix. There's a bathroom wall heater that is crapped out, which doesn't really bother me as I don't trust a wall heater close to the ground in a wet area anyway, and I'd already slated to remove it and install a combo heater/vent(and maybe light) in the ceiling where the old vent fan currently resides. There's also an issue of a non-functional garbage disposal and a leaky kitchen sink, but for the most part, plumbing is easy to diagnose and repair. A bit of plumber's putty and PVC goes a long ways. :-)
This house has a lot of projects, and needs a lot of love. But, I'm not looking for perfect.. I'm looking for something that's in the same condition I am. A bit broken and worn out, and in need of a little love. This will be my first home. Well.. It's just a house now. I show it a little love, and I can make it a home.
I'm looking forward to having a garage again. A place for me to tinker, and be creative. I also found out that after I've finished all my projects and lived in it for a while, I can make a decent chunk of change on this house a rental property. As in pretty much twice what my mortgage will be. I'm considering doing this for a little while. Maybe have 2 or 3 rental homes as a residual income. Then use their incomes to pay off their mortgages, then the home that I'm living in, and then I'm golden. I'll still keep working, but the money I'd make from the rental properties can just get tossed into savings. Yeah, I could use that to move into bigger and better, but I also believe in not living beyond my means. As in, my paycheck from what ever job I have at the time should be enough to pay all my bills, groceries, pet stuff, gas, and still be able to put some of that into savings. Again, it's all about life being a learning experience. I'm learning on the fly.
My only real obstacle will be making it thru the appraisal. The house is a foreclosure, and the bank accepted an offer that is less than the value of the land alone. I *shouldn't* have any problems getting approved. But.. I am intending to be there during the appraisal, and when the appraiser sees an issue, I can explain my plan, the hows, the whys, and the materials. I'll do what I have to do to get this. :-)
That's it for now. :-)