Tearing down walls

scrappykatJuly 2, 2014

I am thinking of buying a small (880 sq ft) bungalow but would want to make some changes to the layout. i did a rough layout here:


the left side has a living room in front, then kitchen, then tiny bathroom (3/4) and finally a small enclosed porch at the rear

i would like to open up the kitchen/living room, convert the bath to a 1/2 and have it open onto the hallway (instead of the kitchen like it does now-yuck)

the other side of the house has bedrooms on the front and back with a laundry room (9x10) in the middle --it opens onto the garage.

i would like to convert the laundry room into a full bathroom and possible take some space to make the back bedroom a little larger

what do you think?

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Front photo?

Orientation of bedroom access.
Slab/raised foundation?

    Bookmark   July 2, 2014 at 11:47AM
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Budget? Experience?

    Bookmark   July 2, 2014 at 12:08PM
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ok, here is pic of the front.

the bedrooms are 10x13, laundry room 9x10, living room and kitchen are 13x12

this is on a basement

i have no experience and my budget is ~20K

    Bookmark   July 2, 2014 at 12:22PM
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Seems like those walls inside would be load bearing. Only way they would not be is if there are trusses in the attic.

You need the services of a architect/construction expert.

    Bookmark   July 2, 2014 at 7:52PM
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Thanks for the photo.

It would have been for easier if the roof were a steeper slope and a straight gable, instead of a low-slope hip.

Remove the 3/4 bath and create a dining rm., Take 3'6" from the 10' length of the laundry rm. for the bdrm entrances, which will leave plenty of room for a full bath.

Leaving the garage access as is, is an aesthetics issue, however, the low-slope roof is indicative of a mild climate so an exterior garage access may be acceptable.

    Bookmark   July 2, 2014 at 8:09PM
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OMG Snoony, that sounds perfect---I wasn't even thinking about that idea! I hate the roofline but it is what it is.....

i will definitely bring in a remodeling person to evaluate the walls, but it's nice that i have other options :)

thanks again!

    Bookmark   July 3, 2014 at 7:34AM
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20K won't buy the materials to begin a project of that scope. This isn't the house for you if you don't love it as is.

    Bookmark   July 3, 2014 at 9:36AM
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Green Designs------I think it could work-----i live in Northern WI where everything is cheaper----i had a full bathroom put in (in a much more expensive area--Madison) in my basement for $11,000---which included digging up the cement and putting in piping etc.

I also redid my kitchen with amish cherry cabs, ebony hardwood floors, granite countertops, SS appliances etc for ~$20 (again in a much more expensive area--Madison)

Not sure where u live, but I'm confident I could make something work :)

    Bookmark   July 3, 2014 at 10:09AM
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20K won't buy the materials to begin a project of that scope

Sure it can. We're completely re-doing a house of similar size for $10K total in materials, all DIY labor. It sounds like scrappykat has to hire out the labor, so the $20K budget won't go nearly as far as ours, but it should be enough to remove a couple walls and add a modest bathroom.

    Bookmark   July 3, 2014 at 2:51PM
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thank you for the encouragement Weedy----I know i can get something done---even if its just changing the 9x10 laundry room into a full bath. I've never done the work myself but i've subcontracted my own large remodeling projects in the past and know what is reasonable for my area.

i love a challenge and a project and this house would definitely be both :)

    Bookmark   July 3, 2014 at 3:15PM
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Ok, back to the discussion.

As for the load bering walls. You can look in the basement for support posts, also have someone look in the attic and there is possibly an attic access just inside the laundry room door.

As a matter of speculation, only, I would say that the center wall is bering and depending upon the way it was framed, possibly one of the 3/4 bath walls.

An attic inspection will reveal that.

    Bookmark   July 3, 2014 at 11:08PM
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here is a view of the wall between the kitchen and living room that i want to get rid of (it has the arched entry way). not sure if that gives anyone a better idea of whether its load bearing...

    Bookmark   July 4, 2014 at 3:41PM
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Only an attic inspection will tell you that.

    Bookmark   July 4, 2014 at 4:22PM
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I would be more inclined to have a narrower physical walking entrance to the kitchen with a counter or bar height pass-thru than a wider walking entrance.

Think in terms of the cook. Suppose you have a room full of guest and in full view of your MIL you "accidentally" drop her Filet-mignon on the floor.

While a half wall would have saved you the embarrassment and allowed you to have retrieved the delicate morsel and with a quick wipe of both it and the floor, deposited it upon the bed of blanched swiss chard, saving the moment.

I mean, after all, it's not as if you hadn't washed the floor in the last week or two,........is it.

    Bookmark   July 4, 2014 at 8:48PM
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lol snoony--i guess thats one way to spin it

    Bookmark   July 5, 2014 at 12:37AM
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