a new outbuilding for an old house

johnmariOctober 9, 2008

Some of you have seen this over on Home Dec, so ignore it if you did, but I thought you old-house folks might like to see. :-)

The ~1910-ish micro-garage next to our 1900 house was failing - minor details like no foundation at all, sills you could stick your finger through, rotten roof decking and floors - and would have been miles outside our budget to fix up well enough to be safe for use. After a lot of wrangling we chose to tear it down and replace it with a smaller (8x10), very sturdy structure from a local semi-custom shed company. I am very happy with how well it coordinates with the house, especially the roofline angle of the main house. (I hate the roofline of the rear addition, it looks wrong, but I'm stuck with it.) It looks like it belongs there; we could have gotten one that was much cheaper at a home improvement center but it would have looked like a cheap shed tacked onto the property because the proportions were always off. The shed company just came out with this model this summer, just in time for us. Sorry the 2nd picture is a little washed out in front, it was tricky to get enough light to see the side.

I do miss having a proper garage - our last house had an oversized 2-car garage and parking outside sucks in a snowy/icy climate, but I'm just glad we have off-street parking this winter! We had to park on the yard itself which is not only trashy but made a rutted mess of the ground.

Here is a link that might be useful: Reeds Ferry Sheds, Nashua NH

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Oh, very well done indeed! It does suit your home to a "T". Glad you shared it over here, because I'm no decorator and rarely go over to that side. Love seeing people's attractive homes and grounds on here. Enjoy your shed!

    Bookmark   October 9, 2008 at 4:40PM
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Johnmari ~ I wanted to tell you that in addition to the new shed, I think your old house is wonderful! Glad you have a parking area too. We have a garage that I have never parked in due to DH's 'stuff' which is a pain in the winter.

Hey, you are getting very close to my pictures which are listed lower down on this board (see 'Hex Floor' thread) :o) Shower doors will be installed and pics added this afternoon.

    Bookmark   October 10, 2008 at 8:02AM
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Thanks, kimkitchy. Hopefully our grounds will be a little bit more attractive next year; our house was a rental for 10+ years and then a poorly done flip, and was completely overgrown with neglected shrubbery that we tried to neaten up and eventually just had to tear out especially once the honeysuckle invasion began and it started eating the porch! All along the right side of the porch were lilacs (eastern NH is practically Lilac Central and I adore them) which we do want to replace but with dwarf varieties so they don't take over the porch like we removed.

Wow, Lauren, that bathroom's really sharp. Well done!

Have you forgiven me yet for bullying you into stripping the trim in the dining room? LOL Karma is paying me back by giving me acres of leprous-looking trim that needs to be stripped - PO painted right over about a zillion coats of chipping, peeling paint with FLAT paint (urgh, it's filthy already and completely uncleanable) without scraping or sanding anything, plus he dripped and slopped and painted right over the original porcelain interior knobs and *wail* Eastlake exterior knob and twist doorbell. It's awful. We know the trim in the living and dining rooms and front hallway were originally something stained dark from a couple of spots that chipped all the way through, but even if we were to repaint it rather than restoring the dark finish it still needs to be completely stripped down. The baseboards in the LR and DR have a beautiful fluted detail that's completely gunked up with paint, which I think is going to mean a lot of time with dental picks. :-/ Upstairs we have spots chipped down to original paint that was mint green! *shudder* I don't really have much for interior pics because we're still in "complete dump" mode inside due to cashflow and lack of DIY-ability (time, energy and skills).

    Bookmark   October 10, 2008 at 11:42AM
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johnmari, you probably already know this but thought I'd chime in, just in case you don't. This Old House had informtion about using an old crock pot filled with water and putting your paint covered hardware in it for a while until the paint just falls off. I've heard it works really well. I hate thinking about your Eastlake knob and twist doorbell covered in paint!

Not hijack your thread here, but does anyone know how to fix a twist doorbell that no longer rings? Ours only kind of clicks or clatters. Probably we'd need to replace the interior parts, but I hate to buy a whole new reproduction bell just to gut it for the parts!

Ugh, good luck with your paint stripping.

    Bookmark   October 10, 2008 at 1:25PM
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Johnmari ~ my son has used a small crockpot (as Kim suggests) for years to easily strip the paint off our old hardware and any other old hardware he gets his hands on (he's into historical preservation). Seems it soaks in the crockpot and then he cleans it off fairly easily.

I don't blame you, I thank you! Yes, you were very passionate and insistent...and it convinced me to do the right thing. If it were not for you, I would be staring at painted woodwork in the dining room thinking, "I wish this was stripped." It took months but we love how it matches the living room. After the bathroom, hallway and living room projects, I will likely strip the bannister's and posts at the top of the upstairs. Maybe a few door frames, there's still plenty of painted oak trim in this house. Stripping wood is very rewarding slow work.

Our house has been in constant mess/restoration for 8 years. Having this bathroom finally completed is going to be such a big improvement in our living conditions! Money has always been the biggest challenge and with the current economy, that will continue to be the case.

    Bookmark   October 10, 2008 at 2:00PM
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We already have a spare old crockpot ($1 at a yard sale) set aside in a closet for the hardware. :-) I'm hoping to get started on the paint stripping next spring, assuming I'm healthy enough to work for a few hours at a time instead of 15 minutes (not worth even getting out tools), although next summer's big project is to strip much of the porch and do a whole slew of repairs to it before repainting. Normally we'd hire that sort of thing out because it's such a big project but finances are an issue w/us too. We spent a lot this year on "de-landscaping" (shrub/tree removal and tree trimming), regrading, and putting in the driveway, the shed, and a fence for the back yard, plus some electrical and plumbing inside and splurging on a couch and coffee table that actually fit into our living room. Still, we might spend the money on one of those infrared paint remover thingies to speed up the process.

Can't help you on the doorbell, Kim - try starting a new thread with your question. Ours sort of does a combination clank and ring, but I think that's because of the thick layers of paint on the bell.

    Bookmark   October 10, 2008 at 3:21PM
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