Wow, the last few days have been one hell of a whirl. As you will know, Soph and me got the keys to our house on Friday and we haven’t stopped working on the house since. I know what we are doing is what millions and millions of people have done in their lives and is nothing new, but it’s new to us and we’re learning a lot.
We started by ripping up the carpets which weren’t looked after (apart from the lounge, that one was OK, we cleaned that one) and took down some pretty shoddy fitted wardrobes in the master bedroom. We took some dado rails off the walls and gave the kitchen and bathroom a good scrub down. That was all done on the Friday.
Saturday we were all up, parents included, ready to start the laborious and enormous task of painting every single wall in the house. I don’t think it really hit us, the size of the task, until Sunday because we really did ache! Anyway, Saturday was a painting day. But Dad also had a venture into the loft to see an age of crap just left up there, so we both set about that dusty task. We now have a loft we can walk in and later insulate properly. Saturday was also a paper scraping day. We’re not fans of wall paper, in fact there is only one wall in the whole house which is wall papered. But we had to do far more scraping of the old paper first. I can honestly say that scraping that years old paper off so much wall is a task not one of us wishes to do again! Overall, it took two days to do.
Sunday was just as productive as Saturday. We managed to tick off the painting in the second and third bedrooms. It was at this point we felt like we were now getting somewhere. Once Neil (Soph’s dad) brought some mega tools with him to get some very stubborn skirting boards off from the master bedroom walls, we could start yet more painting in that room. But it was at this point we were starting to notice a few things that weren’t quite right.
It seems that all but one of the ceiling lights was fitted properly. In fact three were only hanging on by the wiring. Parts of the plaster really could have done with being re-skimmed. All the light switches are different – all wonky to some degree. It gets better…
Monday was again another productive day. Me and Soph both took a day off work to try and get all the last bits of painting done so we could have the lounge carpet cleaned and be ready for the new carpets to be fitted on the stairs, landing and two of the bedrooms. But Monday was a day where once progress was being made, we had two major step backs. First of all, we arrived on Monday to find the boiler was in a very sorry state. It was leaking. But those leaks got into many of the major parts. So rather than pay to have some parts change which may not make the boiler work, we are paying to have a new one fitted on Friday, which is setting us back over £1k. To make things worse, we discovered that we were lacking a functioning stop cock. We disconnected the existing dishwasher to bung it in the back of our van, when the stop cock started to leak almost immediately. Oh, and some smart arse decided to put a double socket right next to all the piping under the sink. To make things extra stressful, all the electrics really do need doing. The sockets are so bad, the electric has been cut off to the conservatory because we really weren’t confident in them and the fuse box is so old! The sparky is coming today to see what needs doing. We’re both fearing a whole re-wiring.
What we’ve found is that although the house may be structurally safe, everything else seems to have been done in such a half-arsed way. That’s why we’re ripping everything up barring the kitchen and bathroom, and starting again. This is our home now and I am determined that things are going to be done properly.
Monday was a tough day for me personally. Its been quite a stressful event really. My working life this year has been far busier than I thought it would be, and this move has added extra pressure to that. I have been managing to keep a lid on top of everything up to now, but I am not afraid to admit that there were at times on Monday I wanted to sit down in a corner and be upset. It seemed that every time we started to make progress, something else came along to set us back, especially in the monetary department. I know you’ll all probably say this all comes part and parcel of owning a home, and you’ll all be right. All I’m doing here venting – I’ve not even told Soph, until now I guess!
Reality is also starting to set in. Up until now, moving out hasn’t worried me in the slightest. But with the problems we encountered today, reality slapped me right in the face. Once we’re in, these are the problems I have to solve, and no one else. In fact inside I started to freak out a little bit!
On a more positive note, the house is starting to look a little bit like a home now. All the painting is now thankfully done. The carpets will be done by Tuesday and the skirting boards will be back on in the master bedroom. I’m hoping there won’t be too much to do in the electrics department, and by Friday we’ll have a brand spanking new boiler.
I want to thank everyone who has wished Soph and me good luck on here and on Twitter. I really don’t expect many people to take much notice of my ramblings of my house move, as everyone does it. But Soph and me really appreciate all the best wishes you have sent us!