It’s been a while since I updated you all on the many adventures of keeping my house from collapsing in on itself due to age. This year has been a bit of a slower year, construction-wise. We had some big goals for the summer, but other things (trips to Europe, new church responsibilities for Denisa, new baby on the way, new pump for the well) got in the way.
Still, it hasn’t been a complete wash. The biggest investment was getting our basement insulated. That’s all done now, and it was fairly more complex than I thought it would be. First came the lovely plastic lay-down, and then we had a company come in and spray closed cell foam insulation 2 inches thick all along our basement walls. It has to be covered with a coat of paint to keep it safe in case of a house fire. The whole project cost us $2000 (the foam part. The plastic cost $100 and a really bad migraine). My biggest fear was that we’d make the investment, only to see no appreciable change in the temperature of our house.
I’m happy to say that the initial indicators seem good. Our floors are much less cold. They’re not warm (we have no heat in the basement, after all–so there’s no warm air to come up through the floor), but they go to room temperature pretty well. I think it’s mainly due to the fact that there’s no longer freezing air down there counteracting the warm air in the living space. So I’m waiting to give it a full thumbs up, but it seems likely that it was a very good decision.
We also got the plumbing switched throughout the house, moving from a mishmash of various types over to much simplified PEX tubing approach. This, coupled with the new well pump and new-to-us water tank (gift from a friend) have made a huge difference in our plumbing. Our water pressure is finally normal, as opposed to weak. Hot water shows up at the kitchen after 18 seconds, as opposed to 60 seconds. This is a big plus, believe me. We also swapped out the kitchen sink, which had been leaking.
So when I take a step back and look at the changes we made, I think it ended up being a fairly close to normal year. We spent $4000 or so on all of the changes. Nothing big renovation-wise, but a lot of small things that make a difference on a day to day basis, which is sometimes even more important.
Also good news? The wood is all in for the year. We bought 3 cord to go with the .75 cord or so we had left. Seeing as how we’ll be gone for 3 weeks in December, I think that should be more than enough to see us through to spring. (Especially since–theoretically–it shouldn’t take as much to keep our house warm, now that the basement’s insulated.)
In any case, this brings to a close this year’s house work. Always a good feeling. Next year? Who knows what we’ll decide to tackle. There’s a new driveway, sun room, patio, second bathroom, master bedroom, loft area, new pellet stove, porch tear down, house steps, giant tree removal, house trim repair, chimney repair, kitchen renovation and expansion . . .
Always plenty of options to choose from. 🙂