If you follow my Instagram @hayleyshomediy you’ll know that last weekend we decided to tackle some more of the wallpaper stripping. All of the wallpaper has to go so the walls can be re-plastered straight after the electrics are done. And given the practicalities of getting multiple contractors on site at the same time I.e. to resolve the damp and other ‘stuff’ as well we’ve decided to get on and get the electrics done sooner. Plus our electrician will also be re-plastering most of the house after for us.
Electrics should be one of, if not the first thing you do when you’re renovating as it involves a LOT of work and mess, floorboards up, walls chiselled out, something you don’t want if you’ve unpacked all of your boxes and started to redecorate rooms. The question we had and have been speaking to damp contractors about is when the electrics need to be in place for the tanking. We’re having the basement fully tanked (essentially sealed as a waterproof container) – when we can agree on/ find a contractor who isn’t charging an arm and a leg for it (by far the most expensive element so far so we’re spending more time getting quotes and costing up, which means it’ll take longer for the work to get done as the lead times for everyone are about 4-6 weeks). Like I said last time, patience is a virtue with this one!
So, back to the point. We’d already finished wallpaper stripping in the first stairwell which was a dream to strip as it came off so easily. Moving on to the landing I started on Saturday morning and was surprised to find (or think I’d found) that the wall behind it was either pink plasterboard or had been painted pink in time. Oh no, I was wrong. After steaming over it a little more, it turns out it was another layer of painted lining paper and peeling back the melted paint revealed about 4-5 more layers of wallpaper. To be honest on these walls most of it had actually peeled away from the base layer already (years of layering doesn’t work!) which made stripping it a dream as it was even easier than the stairway (apart from the corners which they’d sealed in!).
So, one surprise later I decided to start on the living room last night. Bad idea. Firstly it was 200x more difficult to strip. I think it’s been superglued on. Secondly, yet again, theres about 5 layers of hidden wallpaper which I found when starting behind the radiator. Honestly, what were people thinking?! Starting to wonder if the room sizes would increase significantly if we were to re draw the floor plans now ;)!
Speaking of floor plans (literally so much has happened in the last week so sorry this is a bit of a ramble but bear with me!)… We’ve found out that an extension of planning permission in our area costs the same as a new planning application and as we want to incorporate a roof lantern into the kitchen extension, we need to submit a new application anyway. The house came with approved plans which expire in June, but the Kitchen will be massively bigger and needs a sky light of some sort which aren’t on the plans at the moment. Submitting a new application doesn’t invalidate the current one so if our new ones were declined we could submit an extension on the current ones or alter them back to the original. But we’re cutting it mighty fine on the timescale…!
So, we’ve agreed on an architect (unfortunately not the same as those who submitted the original plans, for a number of reasons, mainly time to do it) and he’s coming this Saturday to measure up and discuss our options and should get them back in a week. It’s thrown up costs we hadn’t budgeted for unfortunately, such as the building regs plans which weren’t completed after current planning application (clearly the previous owner never intended to do the work!) but it needs to be done right so in the grand scheme of things it’s worth it. At least we’ll get something tangible out of this spend!
I gave up on the wallpaper stripping last night (Tom can have that joy tonight) – struggling to have the patience to just stop and wait with this place when I have all of the visions for it when it’s complete, but as Tom always tells me, Rome wasn’t built in a day!