We've been having a lot of setbacks at our house in Illinois, so I tend to get really down and spend way too much time looking back, instead of forward. Let me take this opportunity to share with you some of the WTF problems in this house, just for fun. A couple weeks ago our sewer backed up into the garage drain, and we had quite a mess since our garage is still full of all the stuff we have no place for. Plus there was all new wood on the ground for a guest room wall project that we have no time to complete.
Nothing like poop in your garage to make your Friday. Turns out our old clay pipes are just laid nicely next to each other without mortar around the joints, so lots of roots and crap were growing throughout. The plumber we hired rodded the pipes Friday and used a camera to show us how bad it was, then they had to come back the following week to do an 'extensive' rodding of the pipes with these little blade attachments. It all cost us $1300. But wait, there's more! The elbow that supplies our house is not fully connected to the main anymore, so we technically should dig it all up and replace it. To the tune of $6500 or more. He says we can avoid that by rodding every 6 months to keep the flow we do have clear, at $400 a pop. Awesome. Moving on...
I was sitting on the toilet in our master bathroom the other day (love the visual, eh?) and looked down to see this tile on the shower curb was totally cracked. I have no idea how this happened, but I'm wondering if I hit it with the Baby Bjorn bouncer while trying to keep my little angel from screaming bloody murder while I shower. Anyway, we don't have any replacement tile and it's super annoying that this happened. Next...
We probably have to tear off the entire deck on the back of the house, since it's NAILED onto the house and isn't safe. The stairway is sinking into the ground because they put nothing underneath it, and all the steps are breaking. We may be able to just secure it better, but I'm not holding my breath.
Some other dumb issues we've had in this house:
- When we moved in, there was a cracked tile at the threshold from the kitchen to the dining room. Removing the transition strip to refinish the floors basically pulled the chunk of tile out, so we had been living with it (and tripping over it) like this for several months:
Luckily, the previous owners did one thing right and had leftover tile for us. We found a reasonable handyman company to come over and fix it because we just didn't have the time to do it ourselves. It was honestly the best $265 I've ever spent! Our floor guy left that new wood transition for us back in September. I'm so happy it isn't leaning up against the kitchen wall anymore!
- The main bathroom floor/tub surround leaked if water got on it. We've already had water raining through recessed lights and a closet in our newly renovated lower level. We've regrouted and recaulked everything until we can gut the bathroom, so far it's working when our energetic kid is in the tub. The cool retro tile is in terrible shape, the spaces between the tiles are crazy big. You can see all the grout we had to use around the edges.
- I had to hire a locksmith to change out our locks and handles on front and back door, not because we wanted new locks, but because they were installed incorrectly and were so impossible to use I didn't even lock our doors for the first month we lived here. Cost us $500.
- The door opening to our garage from the house is abnormally small for this type of door, at 28 inches wide. This means I had to have a steel entry door special ordered to replace the dumb hollow interior door that was there.
We wanted aluminum, but it wasn't available anywhere in that width. With the labor of the installer, this cost us $990 total. It does look nice, but OMG it's a plain door that isn't even painted.
- We had a ton of plumbing issues in the entire house when we first moved in, including the busted master faucet, lots of leaks, and a running toilet. It cost us $1100 to fix all of them. I won't go into the details, but we still have to gut the main bathroom and change out two more one piece (of crap) toilets.
- We've spent about 3k on electrical work to change the obsolete 50amp panel to 100amp, put lighting in the lower level, fix all the shoddy work on the main floor, and replace all the ugly ceiling fans with lights that turn on with the switch. We wanted a bigger amp panel, but it would've required permits and the electrician suspected that our deck would cause issues because it's too close to the panel on the outside. We decided to just stick with 100 and hope it's all we need. We still have outlets outside that are not meant for outside, and there is no outlet in the downstairs bath....so we have to get those taken care of.
- This one is petty, but our ice maker in the frig stopped working a couple months after we moved in. It's a common problem I know, but it isn't any less annoying and I refuse to pay some company an $85 trip charge plus a few hundred to repair it.
- We had to replace our garage door opener pretty much right away because it was not working properly, and it sounded like a freight train was running through our house every time it opened and closed. We got a good one that was belt driven instead of chain, and it is much nicer and quieter - but cost us $550.
- We replaced our furnace in November because it was 18 years old, loud, and the back of our house (mostly Ashford's room) was always cold. $2300 later, the new Lennox furnace is a bit quieter, but his room is still cold. Annoying.
- The worst yet, we just got our property tax assessment and they increased our value by 70k. There is absolutely nothing we can do about it, because the house probably would be worth what they say after all of our recent improvements. I estimate this will raise our already high property taxes by over 2k per year. This place is just not worth it!
So, on a better note! Zach has started sleeping better at night, in his CRIB. Once for 8 hours straight, and that makes me very happy. He still does not nap during the day unless he's nursing or laying on me, but I'm hopeful that won't last much longer. At four months, he's as big as Ashford was at nine months! Here is my chunky 18 pounder:
And here is a comparison between him and me as a baby. Crazy how much he looks like me!
Ashford has officially entered the 'superhero' stage of his childhood, and so I had to do a little photoshoot of the boys wearing some Captain America gear they got for Easter. Love it!
Sorry for my sporadic posts, I believe it took me three entire days to write this one. Ah, kids. Thanks for letting me rant a little, and I'd appreciate your house horror stories to make me feel better!