I’ve said before one of the reasons I continue to work is that I love taking an old, neglected house and turning it into a home families can be proud of. We’ve just begun that process with the Roadrunner house. And unlike some “flippers,” we believe we have an obligation to the future owners of our projects to provide safe, quality housing. That means we often spend money where nobody will ever see it, in areas where some would cut corners to save on expense and make more money. You can call us stupid or ethical; that’s up to you. Continue reading
I’m pretty excited. We just finished the first round of demo on the Roadrunner house yesterday, and we’ve already had a couple of inquiries from potential buyers. And that’s with me forgetting to take our yard sign…again.
But this post is supposed to be a project update.
A Slight Disappointment
Last week, I was excited to tell you we had found 2×6″ tongue-and-groove flooring when we ripped out the carpet upstairs. That excitement has turned to disappointment.
Just a few days ago I shared some photos of a little white house in Cameron, Texas that we were about to start a renovation on. I called the post You Have to Start Somewhere. It was a sad little place, with peeling paint, rotten wood, scary paneling, and all the usual stuff you see in an old house that had been a rental unit for years.
Well, just take a look at her now! Work started on the renovation right after I took the photos, and the Ricky Mora’s guys have been working hard every day since then. They have a different style of work than some of the other teams we use. Instead of a couple of guys doing things over a month or more, they bring in LOTS of people all at once, and get the work done in a couple of weeks. The quality is good, so we are not complaining!
I’ll include a gallery with lots of photos below. I made a collage of the same angle before and “during” renovation. It looks better already. When it’s done and the porch is all screened in, there will be one to compare with the “before” picture, though! You can see all the trucks in the video walk-through we posted to Facebook (it’s at the bottom of this post).
One thing that’s become clear since we started this business is that we behave differently on houses that are our personal homes versus houses we buy for the business. The beleaguered Bobcat Lair is a great example of this. The delays and broken promises on this property would have caused us to abandon this one if we were trying to make a business profit on it.
And that’s right, we still haven’t moved our things into the house, though it had been rescheduled for May 23. That seemed like a great date, since the contractor had promised that the house would absolutely, positively be finished on May 20 (other than the windows that have to be replaced). I suspected this might be an issue, since he was fixing up and moving into a new house of his own (which our sister business, Hermits’ Rest Enterprises just happened to sell to him). But, a promise is a promise.
Well, except with contractors who have other priorities and other clients. Ours tend to be lower priority, because we are more flexible. But, I didn’t feel very flexible earlier this week. I want to live in this house I’ve owned for 3 years now. I guess everyone has a breaking point in their patience.
Our cute Meadow Arbor project in San Antonio is moving forward, under the capable supervision of GC/Project Manager Frank. He joins our daily meetings and gives us updates, so nothing on the project can deteriorate into an emergency. The system we have set up is working great. Frank can ask questions and share what he needs to keep going, and our team can easily clarify requests.
What’s Going On?
We aren’t making a lot of changes to the house, but there have been some needed repairs to plumbing, electrical, and some exterior porch posts. That all had to be done first.
After the structure was good, Frank’s team got to work covering up stains and repairing hundreds and hundreds of holes in the walls. Someone must have had a LOT of pictures!
One other thing that’s going to make the house good (and safe) was that the brickwork on the fireplace was repaired and sealed. It’s such a nice feature of the home, and now it will stay in good shape for a long time.
The interior walls have all been painted a neutral color that Carol chose, and you can see that the house looks so nice all one color. It looks brand new!
The new flooring for the house has been ordered and will get installed next week. Also the exterior will get painted in the next week or so–it will be a three-color job, like many of the other houses in the neighborhood. It’s going to look as nice as it currently looks in its Google Maps picture (which does not reflect its current state). We are looking forward to seeing the exterior transformation!