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   xoxoxoBruce  Wednesday Dec 23 01:42 AM

Dec 23, 2009: This Old Victorian

You’ve seen them on the news. People that feel a need to beat themselves with chains, cut themselves with knives, blow themselves up… or restore Victorian homes.
This couple in New Jersey have been working on this 1890 Victorian home for years. This is just one of the minor challenges.

Quote:
The front gables are somewhat reachable by ladder as we have a sizeable front porch roof. This makes ladders a possibility. The gables themselves are in moderate condition.
The carvings are caked with paint and it will need to be scraped out with a heat gun and scraper. Some of the panels are cracked and will need to be repaired filled and sanded. There are tiny pencil sized molding around the perimeter of each panel that needs to be replaced.

The other three sides, however, are another matter.


With one guy helping him more or less full time.

Quote:
The bottom line here is that had no choice. This machine is a 51' fully articulated, 4 wheel drive, two man, boom lift. This was not cheap to rent at all! I rented it for 30 days. So, in order to be able to afford this little monster, I called up my painter and made a deal with him to reduce the price of painting the house if I painted all four gables and all 57 windows myself. This means that we need to repair all damage, scrape, wood fill, sand, prime, and paint two coats of paint in four colors on the remaining 3 gables in 30 days. Oh by the way, I have a full time job.


It looks great, but what motivates people to abuse themselves in this manner, especially the interior while living in the house, baffles me.

And really, you ain't seen nuthin yet.


Griff  Wednesday Dec 23 06:34 AM

major


Did you read the Christmas fire saga?



xoxoxoBruce  Wednesday Dec 23 07:24 AM

Yes, just have a couple of drinks then open the wall and fix it, Piece of cake.



chrisinhouston  Wednesday Dec 23 09:06 AM

My first wife and I did a redo on an early 20th century Victorian bungalow in the old Houston Heights. It was no way as big of a project as this as it was a 3 bedroom/1 bath. We bought it in 1986 for $39,000 and sold it in 1996 for $140,000, having restored it and we were now divorcing which may have come about partly from the restoration project. The house is still there but many of the other craftsmen bungalows have been replaced with hugh pseudo-Victorian homes that cover every square inch of the lot. Last time I checked, our little modest home had a tax value of $325,000!



Shawnee123  Wednesday Dec 23 12:34 PM

Oh, I'm in love. Secret passage, secret room...what a beautiful place. I like to see people restore those beautiful old homes: I myself would never have the know-how or gumption. When I win the lottery I'll buy one and have someone else do all the work.



xoxoxoBruce  Wednesday Dec 23 02:51 PM

It would have to be a large lottery and you'd still have a major headache dealing with contractors, architects, the local government, and (shudder) historical commissions. Better to buy one somebody has already finished, and has to sell because it ruined their marriage.



Shawnee123  Wednesday Dec 23 04:05 PM

Good point. I mean, I'll have won the lottery, right?

I always feel sorry for the places in such disarray, though. It's like they're saying "I was once beautiful...I can be again!"



Pie  Wednesday Dec 23 04:14 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shawnee123 View Post
It's like they're saying "I was once beautiful...I can be again!"
No different from many poorly-aged Hollywood celebs. A little botox, a little cosmetic surgery, a little spackle -- hey presto, as good as new.


xoxoxoBruce  Wednesday Dec 23 04:36 PM

Good as new on the outside, but unless the mechanicals you don't see are updated, it'll never have that old spring in the step.



Shawnee123  Wednesday Dec 23 05:43 PM

heh heh...spackle.



Griff  Wednesday Dec 23 05:55 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by xoxoxoBruce View Post
Good as new on the outside, but unless the mechanicals you don't see are updated, it'll never have that old spring in the step.
Actually, every step will have a bit of spring in it from the rotting floor joists.


jinx  Wednesday Dec 23 08:14 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by xoxoxoBruce View Post
It would have to be a large lottery and you'd still have a major headache dealing with contractors, architects, the local government, and (shudder) historical commissions. Better to buy one somebody has already finished, and has to sell because it ruined their marriage.
I'm pretty sure that's what happened to the couple that did ours (over 10 years), although they were claiming they were buying another old beater together there was a definite vibe. It became pretty clear they (the mom and kids anyway) weren't even living here.
Dad was a moron and did a horrible job with so many things you don't really notice until you've lived here awhile.... showed fantastically though and the property inspection only turned up some minor stuff.
I wish he had been as dedicated and skilled as the Victorian guy, I'm really impressed even if it's not my taste.


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