Monday, August 11, 2014

His and Her Home Repair Saga, Day 1

This week our house is having surgery! Well, not really, but that is how it feels. Several very nice people are here today to demo so that tomorrow they can begin the rebuilding and repair work. 

Well that is just way too far into the story. Sorry! Let me back up a little bit...
One of the reasons we bought our town house was because of the beautiful sliding glass door on the back wall leading to the back yard. It lets in a lot of light and in the spring/fall we open up the screen door and get a great breeze and all that fresh air. Last November, we had one of the panes of glass shot out by a BB gun for the second time since we moved in. When the guys came to replace the glass, they asked Sean's permission to look underneath the house in the crawl space.

**Warning! Warning! Danger Will Robinson! Danger!**

There was no reason for them to need to look, but obviously they had seen something that they were concerned about so he told them to feel free to check out whatever they needed to. When they came up from the crawl space, they told Sean that our sliding glass door - which is 8 feet wide - is actually built on three pieces of track instead of one and it has been leaking/seeping in water every time it rains. There was some pretty major water damage that would have to be addressed soon.

**sigh and smh and sigh again**

You can see in this photo where the track has broken and cracked and where the door itself has begun cracking. :(

Fast forward to this summer, we began calling contractors to give us their opinion on the damage and quotes for the repair work. We had several who did not return our phone calls, several who had some pretty comical reasons why they could not come out to the house until September, and a few who were willing to stop by. One was in and out of the house in under 10 minutes and his only idea was to take all the siding off the back of the house (all two stories of siding) to see what was there and then give us a quote for the work. thanks! The other two were very nice, they answered all my questions, and they gave us a good idea of what work they thought needed to be done. In the end, we went with experience and the person we felt we could trust the most. 

We are going with a company whose name makes me smile every time I think about it --- Hammertime Home Improvement.
You pictured this too right!?!?!      {Source}
The problem is much more detailed and extensive than we realized back in the spring when the glass company gave us the heads up. Apparently the back of our house is not sitting on a girder/joist like it is supposed to be. The final girder/joist is about a foot inside the home. The entire back wall of our two story home is resting on 2X8s on top of the brick skirting. Essentially the back of the house is sinking and is structurally unsound. This explains the cracks we have all over the back wall and why the sliding glass door is about an inch lower than the rest of the living room floor. The builder took a shortcut (he is out of business now) and the home inspector missed all of this (he is also out of business, after being sued three times in two years for missing things during inspections).

**Not OK! Just not OK!** 

Throughout this week, we are going to have masonry guys and demo guys and contractors and who knows who else here working on repairing the water damage and structural issues. They are going to jack the back of the house up to make it level, add a girder/joist where there should be one, take out the sliding glass door, reframe/re-dry wall the door opening, and put in a new 6 foot sliding glass door. The back of our house will be level and no longer sinking by the end of the week!
**Happy Dance!!!*    {Source}

Here are some before photos - (it looks bare because we had to take down all the art and decorations and move all the furniture from the back wall). 

This is the inside view. 

This is the outside view. (Our contractor spray painted with an orange color to show where the demo will be done.) 

One last shot of Alex looking out the back door. 

Come back tomorrow to see what work they got done today.

Have you ever had to have major work done on your home?

Happy Monday,

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