Thursday, February 24, 2011

Helping out friends or "fixing up a nightmare"

A good friend of mine used to live in a ca. 1960 condo owned by his mother. In November he decided he didn't want to live alone and moved in with two friends, leaving his mother with the empty condo.

While he lived there we had renovated on and off, particularly rewired about half the place AND NEVER CLOSED UP THE WALLS AGAIN in the hall and kitchen (sorry for the screaming, but hey, there were holes in the wall for almost 4 years!).

Unfortunately at some point he had decided to do a major makeover and prepared that by whacking down some of the tile in the kitchen, taking some plaster down too. Honestly, the tiles were cracked and chipped all over and ugly, but still... it would have been easier with them intact. One wall (with sink and stove) was still ok, so we decided to leave that but had to replaster two other walls (and rewire half the kitchen). We still have to cover the chipped floor tiles with vinyl.

In the living room someone who will not be named had the incredibly bright idea of hanging artwork by stapling it to the plaster walls and drywall ceiling. Seriously, there was an oil painting (no frame) stapled to the ceiling! Oh, and two walls had artwork applied directly using neon marker pens and spray paint. In the end we spent 3 days pulling staples and painted 5 coats of white until we realised it would never cover - we ended up scraping down two walls and removing the plaster (finish coat) in two small spots. The spray paint had to be sanded off because there was no other way to get it off.

Furthermore we had to remove most additions to the original wiring since they were too scary - including live bare wires just plastered in!

One day trying to hang a door the person doing this dropped it and the door handle whacked a nice dent into the laminate floor in the hall - that decided what to do with it. We intended to uncover the original vinyl floor which is ugly as hell but at least vintage. Unfortunately when we got that far, we discovered it was gone... now we probably need to lay a new floor there. Other than that we're basically done, but it was a whole lot of work.

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