I was looking through photos on my phone last night and came across photos I took when we first looked at our house and thought about buying it. Flipping through, I really was shocked at how much we've done in 8 months since moving in. Doing a small project at a time, I think the progress just feels normal. But, woah, I think our house gets a much improved badge.
I thought it'd be fun to stack up photos I took when we were considering this house against progress photos and what it actually looks like now. Sound fun? Just an advanced warning, this is going to be a long one!
Here's what our house looked like when we first looked it last February:
Our house now:
We haven't done much in the way of landscaping, except to prune and fertilize. The biggest changes came in killing the vine growing up the side of our house - a complete monster - and a new roof that was put on before we moved in. The vines took the paint completely off that side of the house. In some ways, it helped us learn that we could tackle painting our house ourselves if we did it a little at a time. We aren't completely finished with the exterior (it got too cold to paint), but our biggest trouble areas have been finished.
|Before (left) and after paint (right side)|
Our backyard has really become a big part of our house and our transformation so far. See how dirty the concrete was? It's been power washed. All that you see here exterior-wise has gotten painted. The section of wood right against the chimney on the underside has been replaced. (You can sort of tell in this photo, but it started to fall apart shortly after we moved in.)
Patio after power washing:
After ripping down vines that were taking over the back, we were left with this. Sad face.
Here's our brother-in-law Ryan putting in the new wood to fix that overhang. He's been such a help in all of our progress, too. He's been our encyclopedia on how to fix things we were unsure about!
Now, let's head inside. The biggest difference, by far, came from painting our cabinets. I think that really was the turning point in making us like this house. That dark color had to go. We paid a lot to have these fixed, but it's been worth it.
It now feels bright and clean in all of our rooms - kitchen, laundry and back living room.
One of our more recent updates has been to our bedroom. Here's what it looked like when we toured the house the first time:
Progress, before painting:
The front living room is probably the biggest "still in progress." I have a feeling that will change this year. Here's what it looked like when we first toured it:
I think this room (and the back living room) were what sold us on this house. The biggest complaint we had about our rental is that we wanted to have gatherings at our house, but we couldn't all sit together. We have a big family and we wanted to host sit down dinners and parties and our rental was small in that department.
We've completed painting this room and the dining room, but we're still not sure what this will turn into next. I'm waiting for the perfect couch to really be a starting point for where we take the room.
And, yes, we've hosted many a dinner in here. Here's Thanksgiving at our house:
See that half wall with the light switch? That two feet of wall is probably the biggest thorn in our side with progress of this room. To have the large dining room table we want and to be able to expand to seat 15-20 people together, this wall most likely needs to be removed. There's a good bit of work that would probably need to be done to make this happen, like moving the electrical, patching the ceiling and floor and (potentially) shoring up a beam just above this in the attic. It sounds expensive and intimidating, so we haven't even tried to seek out a contractor about it yet.
Our fourth bedroom got a makeover from a boy's bedroom to our office.
The chalkboard wall is probably my favorite feature. We use it to plan and make lists.
Bathrooms got updates in the form of paint, new mirror (guest bath), new light fixture (master bath) and whole lot of wall patching all around. Our next move is to finish tiling up the guest bath so that it can be used as an actual shower.
And, finally, the living room (our most "lived in" room) has changed a lot too, but paint has been the biggest help to changing the feel of the place.
Before we purchased:
Ooof, that's a lot! Next up, Paul does a guest post to tell you guys about organizing and making the shop the place he always wanted.