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Old 01-13-2012, 10:53 PM   #1
Join Date: Jan 2012
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Totally new to all of it


I'm a navy wife and mother of 2 beautiful kids, aged almost 4 and 16 mo. old. We bought our first house in Sept. of 2010 and bought it without ever actually looking at it person. I don't regret, it is lovely and we got a good deal. But there are things that we didn't know until we started living here. Things like the plaster falling off the ceiling, and plaster falling out of the walls...all of which had been patched up poorly, but enough to pass inspection. Besides the fact that its falling apart, some of its really ugly. So, with my husband deployed I want to bust my butt and surprise him with a lot of remodeling. The only problem is I know nothing about remodeling anything...or construction...or anything! lol but thats why I'm here. To glean your brilliant minds of all your expertise.
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Old 01-13-2012, 11:09 PM   #2
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We all had to start someplace.
The first roof I did I had to sit on the roof reading the bundle of shingles to figure out how to do it.
A few tips try working on only one room at a time, any more then that and you will go crazy. If possible stay way from redoing the bathroom and kitchen, there going to cost the most, take the most time and will mess up trying to live in the house while your working on them.
Start in a bedroom, take everthing out of the room and close the door at the end of the day and forget about it to give yourself a break.
Most older homes need complete rewiring, major plumbing work, and a new roof. That's just the way it is.
Do not spend all your money for fofo stuff and not be able to fix a leaking roof because you have no more money.
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Old 01-14-2012, 06:52 AM   #3
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: New Hampshire, USA
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What Joe said!

Start with small projects. Gather all the experience you can (ask neighbors and family and friends to help). Go to your hardware stores, most of the workers there will know some of what you need to know. In my area, most churches are more than willing to lend a hand to someone with a spouse deployed. This Old House on PBS often has excellent shows, and they are very well done for both beginner and intermediate. Your local library probably has many DIY books too. Lastly, post all the questions you can on here, someone will always jump in with helpful information.

And like Joe said, don't tackle super huge projects right away, you'll only drive yourself crazy, lol!

Good luck. We did all start somewhere, so start with something real easy and build a good foundation of knowledge.
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Old 01-14-2012, 01:43 PM   #4
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Location: St. Petersburg, FL Minds of moderate caliber ordinarily condemn everything which is beyond them.
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You can do yourself a favor by evaluating ALL the work you want to get done before starting even small jobs.
The reason for this is that many tasks will encroach upon or overlap with other projected or anticipated projects. If this possibility is not taken into account, you may find yourself doing double work or destroying part of a job already completed.

There's an old saying, "Plan your work, then work your plan."

Sometimes half of the job is understanding what you want to accomplish, and how you intend to get there. Experienced builders can honestly and truly build an entire project in their minds before even touching a hammer. You would never leave on a car trip without first knowing where you intend to go, and having a map and current information that tells you the roads to take.... AND the ones to avoid. Do no less with your remodeling.

Drawings are an important but far too often overlooked part of many DIY homeowner's remodeling. They not only give you clear (hopefully) ideas of what your project should look like, but they also help you figure out how different parts or segments and phases of the project interact with the overall plan.

If you are a little adventurous, may I suggest you set aside a few weeks to download and learn to use a FREE program from Google, called SketchUp? This program can become your salvation in oh so many ways. I am very serious here.

Many of us here use this program, and you can exchange drawings with us, and we, with you. The fantastically invaluable part of S/U is that you can view, manipulate, and dissect (piece by piece) any drawing you receive from someone.... and they can do the same with yours. Each time a drawing is shared, any suggestions, changes, or improvements can be sent back to the initiator in the form of a whole new drawing, or just a minor alteration of the original.... or anything in between.

As they say, "A picture is worth a thousand words."
"True eloquence consists in saying all that is necessary, and only that which is."
François Duc de La Rochefoucauld
Willie T

Last edited by Willie T; 01-14-2012 at 01:48 PM.
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Old 01-14-2012, 06:26 PM   #5
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Welcome to the site.
- Build Well -
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