One the kitchen”remodel” was complete it was time to tackle the ripping out of the ceiling in the garage & laundry area. This garage had a crazy low ceiling in it for some unknown reason, and we needed to rip it out so that we could a) build out upstairs to line up the side of the house and b) re-align the roof structures as they were pitched at 2 different angles! and c) create a separate laundry & garage area as the two are not going to be connected.
Here’s the ceiling being opened up and coming down and the huge furnace that we aren’t quite sure what to do with just yet!
We also had to build up the floor in this garage to bring it in line with the house flooring so our laundry was on the same level as the kitchen. However with the current roof line being so low in this section of the garage we have to raise the roof before finishing the floor as there’s minimal headroom! Pulling up the original floor in this area to raise and replace it was another of those moments when we didn’t know what we might find underneath….and yes, there was another rats nest (empty again!) but for those of you who don’t know what these look like, here is a taster of what to look out for!!
The one issue with raising the roof and adjusting the framing is that it means the existing roof has to come off and we are heading for another few days of rain so this work might have to halt where it is for now. We need to eventually frame out this area and build in the powder room that is going here – the plumbing for this small bathroom has already been set.
Moving on to the next thing was bringing down the dining room wall and ceiling and opening up the staircase to this area. The staircase was built as an addition to the house sometime in the 70’s so it quite the funky add-on and we weren’t sure again what we would find once we opened it all up. We knew the ceiling was a strange set up as it was a good foot lower than the kitchen one. What had happened was the dining area must have been a sun-room addition at some point in the 60’s and then they extended out over it in the 70’s and never bothered to realign the ceiling leaving a gap between the two. So we were going to raise the ceiling to the proper rest of house height. We also knew there was all kinds of old rodent nastiness (nothing live thankfully) awaiting us in this space as this was the centre of all the former activity!
Here’s that wall being broken out. The wooden ceiling you can see is the “fake” one and a good foot away from the extension subfloor! David and Pablo, our trusty laborer, pulled down the sun-room ceiling and both took showers immediately after. Being rained upon with old rat excrement is not a pleasant experience apparently!!! The good news is that that’s the last of the animal debris cleanup in the house – hurrah, we are officially rodent free!
With the ceiling down and the stairs all open we can asses what needs to happen to build a new staircase and eventually extend the house out on this level another 4 feet.
The final piece happening this week was the mudding, sanding and the last bits of drywall so we can finally paint upstairs (tho believe me there is much more to do before we can move into upstairs!). Benito our amazing drywall sub-contractor and his crew have worked non stop to get this done.
Here’s the stairwell mostly finished , well as much as it can be without putting in the new staircase and windows that we don’t have yet!
What amazed me was their technique for reaching the high bits of the walls. Check this out…
Benito told us he can easily go twice as high as this on his stilts and to him it feels just like wearing a pair of shoes!
And that was week 7! A fairly busy & intense week in this house renovation, and I think there’s a few more weeks like this to come.