Real Estate Renovations

Posts Tagged ‘Renovation’

Back On Track! (Finally)

In real estate on February 22, 2013 at 7:03 PM

After many many months of back and forth with lenders. We finally closed on our renovation loan. Now it’s back to business. We need to go and re-shop some of the little touches. We have to revisit tile, some appliances and fixtures. It was a lot of fun the first time and will be more fun the second time around. Especially since the loan is final. We will be contacting the builder next week to get an idea of the work schedule. Many more post to follow.


Meet: Our Subject

In real estate on April 16, 2012 at 10:02 PM

And here we find our subject. Isn’t it just Adorable?

  • Three bedrooms one bath
  • Finished (pretty much) full basement.
  • Screened side porch
  • Formal dining room
  • Living room with wood burning fireplace
  • Updated kitchen and a nice flow.

The beauty of the Colonial some would say is the symmetry they offer. It’s a nice neat box and one of the things I really love about this home.


Accompanying this lovely little home is a backyard of about 1/2 acre.


The lot allows a great deal of space to be added from the rear of the existing structure. There are a few large trees that will have to be removed but the site is a balanced site and we will not have to incur any fees for the addition or removal of soil for the project. Good News!

The neighborhood is a gem, much older with mature trees that provide plenty of shade (allowing for a very manageable monthly heating/cooling bill). It’s a quiet neighborhood with friendly families. On the flip side from a realtor’s point of view, there is a new subdivision at the cul-de-sac and the property values are terrific.

Calling Bob The Builder…

In Design Options, real estate on April 16, 2012 at 8:18 PM

What I have found seems to really be the key to this process is taking the time to really think about what you want to have done. Think as well, about how much money you really want to and can comfortably afford for the project.

(Prepare yourself to be wildly disillusioned at what things cost!)

We mulled over a number of ideas on what might be the best renovation option for both our way of living as well as the best use of the available space we currently had to use.

We looked at how we used spaces and in some cases IF we used spaces.  The dining room became a particular point of conversation when we realized that in actuality our formal dining room was a glorified mail slot and its main function was to hold the daily mail. We only used it to eat one or twice EVERY FEW YEARS.  So yes, it was a nice space to have, but it did not give use the best use of space in our home.

We narrowed it down to the following possibilities:

  • Add a two-story addition off the back of the house.
  • Convert the existing attic into a Master suite
  • Wild out on the Basement adding another bathroom and massive family room.

Our next step was to actually have a few discussions with some professionals. We opted to meet with a general contractor, an architect and a design/build firm. This proved very helpful as we talked through our lifestyle and our ideas for a renovation.  We were offered pros and cons on our various options and given a few options we had not considered.

In the end after speaking with representatives from each discipline, we chose to use a design/build firm.  For us it turned, the ability to have all the work under one roof seemed the best option for us. The firm we ultimately chose had a strong  reputation, not only in the building/construction industry but in the lending and finance industry as well. It spoke volumes to us that they were a firm with a proven history  of working with these loans and having them conclude successfully. As the blog progresses, I will release the names of the professionals we considered and those we ultimately used.

In the end, we decided to erect a cantilever second story (only) addition to contain a Master Bedroom/Bathroom Suite and to blow out the first floor into a completely open concept space.

Also on the list of renovations:

  • New Windows
  • New Roof and Gutters
  • New exterior doors
  • New shutters
  • New Screened in side porch
  • New Deck to span the rear of the house under the addition.
  • Renovate our existing laundry room
  • Convert an existing bedroom into a Master Closet
  • Remove impeding trees
  • Enlarge and renovate Kitchen to add new island and floor plan.

Seems like a great list.  But before I get too far ahead of myself… There’s a lot that went into the process and lot of give and take just to get where we are today… And we haven’t even broken ground yet.

Hello world!

In real estate on April 16, 2012 at 3:21 PM

Ta-da!  After many clicks and edits we’re up and running!!! Great, now what?

Let me just start by saying that those of you that already know me know that I have an easy going, if not somewhat snarky personality. You shall see much of this going forward as par for the course.  I am opinionated and sometimes a little stubborn but its only due to my passion. 🙂

You will see all of that and more here in this most recent Johnson venture.  Before going any further let me give a bit of the needed background. Both myself and my husband John are Realtors.  We have spent the last year and a half on the hunt for the perfect property for us. To no avail.

Recently we made the decision to renovate our actually quite lovely, conveniently situated, not under water, Colonial home.  Yes! Knocking down walls, adding additions and the like….

Let’s just say, that though we are optimistic for the outcome, the process is proving to be quite humbling.

And so I am able to put myself in the shoes of many of my clients that are going through the home buying process for the first ( or fifth) time and I felt a sense of camaraderie. So we are opening the doors to the good the bad and ( as much of ) the ugly ( as we dare allow…)

I hope that the blog will be a source of inspiration for others to take the plunge or at least a community of support for my nerves when things get….tense. There’s plenty to fuel the fire of this project, but we’ll get to all that in due time.

Meanwhile, John and I welcome you into the Renovation of our Estate….