The highs and lows of parenting and real estate.

The little home improvement project that could…

Well, we have decided that the bathroom is not the only area in need of a major overhaul in our house. The kitchen has been an issue for both of us from day one here. It is small, with hideous linoleum, a bad wallpaper border and an extraordinarily inefficient use of cabinet space. The kitchen and lack of storage space is so bad, in fact, that I have seriously considered just moving to a house with a larger kitchen. However, that isn’t going to happen anytime soon. I love many of the other things we’ve done to our house (this is one of my favorites:
and really, the kitchen has a lot of potential; it just needs a serious renovation.

So, we’re currently in the process of refinancing our house (we got a great deal with Wells Fargo) and will soon be in possession of $20,000 earmarked for remodels. Jason pretty much has me talked into the idea of doing it ourselves. I’m not looking forward to several months of total chaos in our bathroom and kitchen, but I know that we will be much happier with the end result if we do it ourselves. There’s something to be said for the pride that comes with accomplishing a project without the help of a professional (although, there’s also something to be said for the happiness of our marriage when we’re not in the midst of a home improvement odyssey). I also would like the bulk of our money to be spent on the gorgeous materials I have in mind, rather than labor. We will see, though, I’m not committing to anything just yet.

I may be totally naive as to how far I can stretch our dollars, but here is what I want to definitely be done with by the end of this: new shower (maybe out of these), bathroom floor, light fixtures for the bathroom, sinks, cabinets and towel bars, new floor for the kitchen, counters, cabinets, stove and dishwasher. If we have any money left over, I want new front doors and to paint the outside of our house, which currently looks like this:

but I would prefer it to look like this (this house is across the street from us, doesn’t it look nice?):

And that is the plan… I’m an excellent bargain shopper and Jason’s practically a pro-contractor. I think we have at least a shot at accomplishing this before we end up in marriage counseling…

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