Tuesday, August 26, 2014

I'm Not Handy

Most of you probably know that we own a rental property in Orem.  Over the past year we've been doing some renovations in the basement.  When I say, "we've been doing some renovations"  what I really mean is, "we've been paying some people to do some renovations."

Here's the thing.  I'm not handy.  Not at all.

I can perform basic maintenance.  I can change a light bulb.  (But don't expect me to go to the store and buy new light bulbs if we run out.  That's much too difficult.)  I can mow the lawn.  I'm pretty good with electronics, so I can deal with problems that come up with computers or other devices.

But let's not kid ourselves.  I'm not handy.  Renovating a basement and making it cute is something beyond my abilities.  (We had several people say the finished product was cute when we showed it to potential renters.  Please note: all of the people who said that were female.)

We hired my friend Cameron to do most of the heavy work.  He repaired some shelves.  He added sound proofing to the ceiling.  He painted.  He installed a new sink.  He put a fancy back splash in the kitchen.  He performed various other miracles which I can't currently think of.

The one thing he said that he didn't do was install flooring.  He did rip out the old carpets for us, but that left us to do the flooring ourselves.  We had a temporary delusion.  We thought to ourselves, "We're totally handy!  We can totally do this!"  If you ever hear us saying something like that again, please remind us that it is a lie.

The first step was to tear up the existing linoleum.  The good news is that I am handy enough to destroy stuff.

Robyn also rocks at destroying stuff.
After we tore up the linoleum, that's when the hard part came.  (By hard part, I mean the part where you have to do stuff without destroying anything.)  We bought some vinyl that looks like hard wood, and totally began installing it.

Robyn's brother came over and gave us some training on installing flooring.  He even helped us for a few hours.  He's kind of a saint.

Look how cute Robyn is, laying the first couple tiles.

After he left, we worked on it for several more hours on our own.   After we had put a good 20-25 man hours into the project, we realized we were not even done with the first room.  There was still a hallway and a bedroom to go.

That's when I knew in my heart that we needed to give up.  I'm pretty sure the 20 hours we collectively spent doing half of a room saved the contractor like an hour.  So that pretty much means that we were saving ourselves about 2 dollars an hour by doing the work on our own.  It just didn't make sense for us to do it.

So we called a contractor who came to do it for us.

When he walked in he asked me who had started it, and why didn't they finish?  I told him that we had started and then came to the reality that we were not handy.  He said our work looked good.  So I guess that's the good news.  We take forever to do it, but what we accomplish is quality work.

He knocked it out in a couple days.  Now I can officially take credit for all the work that we paid to have done.

The family room with the snazzy new flooring

The hallway and stairs

The kitchen with the cool new back splash and new appliances.

One of the bedrooms, freshly painted with new flooring.

Another bedroom, freshly painted, shelves fixed, new flooring.
As you can see, my money was hard at work making it awesome.

Do you want to know the best part?  Now someone lives there and they are slowly paying back all the money we spent.

1 comment:

  1. When I worked with you as a Scout leader, if I could combine service with destruction you and your friends could outwork anybody and it looked good.


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