The house…it’s been alluded to on here numerous times. If you know us, you’ve likely at least heard about it. If you us well, you’ve likely been several times during/after the project.
From March 2017 when we started looking into the possibility of buying the house to March 2019 when we moved in, it consumed most of our free time. I had to organize the financing, plans, permits, acted as contractor, and physically did a ton of the work too. Alyce had to double up on everything at home since I was always busy; she also helped do some work too when available.
In this post, I’ll try to go over purchasing the house and making plans, the things we did, before/after, and thoughts after living in it for nearly two years.
Buying the house
We liked our old house, but we knew we would prefer a little more space. I also had always wanted to design and build a house. Additionally, we did not want to leave our neighborhood. The last two items did not line up with each other as lot prices (really tear-downs) were high and going higher.
With that in mind, we started to expand our search to houses that would need renovation. I don’t know we had in mind the full scope of renovations we’d eventually do, but we were looking for potential.
There was a house or two we looked at, but saw people working on the house at the end of the block for the first time in a while as I was walking James. This was notable for several reasons…
This particular house was vacant since Katrina (12 years). This was very odd, as the lot alone was worth a whole lot as it was an oversized corner lot and faced the lakefront and the Canal boulevard neutral ground. The house had the potential for good curb appeal. And while not a major factor, it did have some history to it in that New Orleans musician Al Hirt lived in it for a long time.