First off, I’m not doing very good about keeping my kitchen clean. :-) In my defense, I probably shouldn’t have started this on a weekend. We’ve been pretty busy, so I haven’t really paid much attention to the kitchen. We did, however, finally replace the light bulbs in the kitchen – we haven’t had light in there for several days because the light bulbs blew out and both of us were too lazy to fix it. (I know, I’m just being honest here.)
Tomorrow is Monday and hopefully I can get back on track.
Last week we got the estimates for fixing our foundation and they were as discouraging as we were afraid.
Company C sent their estimate. This was the company I was most impressed with. His solution was to rebuild the footing and use piers to put the house back up to its correct height, and keep it from sinking again. This would cost $18,230. He also recommended a water-proofing system, a vapor barrier, and two sump pumps to prevent water from collecting in the crawl space and causing any further damage – that totaled about $5,000.
Company A’s estimate was a bit more palatable, but still high. They wanted to just use piers to fix the problem, which from what several of the companies we’ve had out here have said it’s not good enough. Their estimate was $10,820. However, this company was the one that missed the extent of the damage a year ago. While it was somewhat hidden by the sun porch, I don’t think it was so hidden that a professional looking for problems wouldn’t have noticed. Their $5,400 estimate was what convinced us to get the house – we would have walked away if it had been any higher. So I’m a little ticked off at this company, and not sure that I really want to work with them.
Either way, we don’t have the money right now. We are still looking at any other possibilities, but I think we might have to go the old fashioned route and save up for it. (Unknown rich relative, now is the time to make your appearance!) One of the downsides to saving up for it is that it’s going to take so long. It’s impossible to tell how much longer it will be before it gets worse, but it’s not like we’re about to fall through our floor right now. In the time it will take to save for this repair, we will have other repairs to save for too: a new roof, a new hot water heater, replumb the house, and also a new car (as our current car will be too small for us shortly as our family grows). We sort of feel we are left between a rock and a hard place.
Since it will probably be several years until we’re able to repair this, we decided we should go ahead and use the money to fix the backyard and the water issues, in the hopes that this will keep the foundation from getting worse. I’m also thinking of some other minor repairs that I’ve been wanting to do – it would be nice to take care of it now. For example, putting all the insulation back into the crawlspace, as the weather has turned cooler here. Also, I have been wanting to get our HVAC serviced and our ducts cleaned – just to see if that helps keep our heating bills down this winter. (It’s so difficult to save money when you’re paying so much to heat the house! Our house isn’t very energy efficient.)
And just because I like to dream… I like to imagine what I would do if someone handed me $40,000. I like to think about fixing the foundation, replacing the windows, putting in a new HVAC unit that’s more energy efficient, getting all new non-rusty pipes, a new hot water heater… All these things would help keep our energy costs lower and make an impact on our quality of life! But…. Alas, I don’t have $40,000, so I will have to keep my dreams locked up and focus on reality.