We took possession of the house yesterday and pretty quickly got started on the long list of work that we need to do. We first tore up the carpet that was in the dining room, family room and foyer. We knew there were hardwood floors underneath, but we weren’t sure what to expect of them – there was quite a bit of apparent “water” (yellow water would be more accurate, if you catche my drift) damage on the carpet, so we didn’t hold too high of hopes for the hardwood. We were extremely surprised, however, to find that the hardwood underneath was in fantastic shape. Better than the other rooms in the house, in fact. There are some scratches on it and it needs to be cleaned well, but otherwise, it is (almost) gorgeous.
While Danielle was pulling staples and removing the tack strips, I started working on the bathroom demolition. “Demo” or “Demo Day” has become quite a common term, thanks to Extreme Makeover Home Edition. I had always wondered why they never saved anything from the houses that they tear down – now I know. In the bathroom, we decided to try and save a few of the items so we could sell them and get a few extra dollars. Well, demo becomes a totally different thing when you’re try to save stuff. Forget the sledge hammer, you need screw drivers and putty knives to remove things if you plan on saving them. In the end (so far), we managed to save a couple towel bars and the vanity countertop. We’ll also save the toilet and second vanity countertop, but I think that’s going to be all.
With the vanity removed (which ended up being very time consuming just so we could save the countertop), it was time to tear into the wall. The wall ended up being a little different than we expected. The walls are floor-to-ceiling tile that was put in sometime in the seventies, most likely. The wall consists of the following, from back to front: 3/8″ drywall (that’s what it appears to be, though it seems an odd size), wire mesh, approx. 1/2″ concrete, another layer of concrete approx. 1/4″ thick, adhesive, ceramic tile. Breaking through plaster is no problem. Two layers of concrete is another story.
We did get a fairly large hole made in the wall and hopefully will get the rest of the wall removed today. The good news in all of this, is that there is no lead paint on this wall, so there’s dust, but it’s safe dust. We didn’t get as lucky on the opposite wall, though it is just plaster (painted with lead paint) under the tile, so it’s easy to remove.
Enough of my rambling, here are some photos from day 1.