I debated with myself about whether to blog about our journey through the house remodel. It seems like it might get a bit too personal. But then again, I really wish I could read about or see a start-to-finish discussion from somebody else, with all their lessons learned, tough decisions, and which contractors were good and which ones weren't. And the cost. Nobody wants to talk about how much their remodel cost. It's like a taboo subject or something. Well, dammit, we'd all be a lot better off if we shared this stuff! So I decided I'll blog about our journey, unless Mrs. objects. You, the reader, are free to ignore remodel-related posts or you can follow along. You certainly are invited to share any ideas and experiences of your own.
Our first step was hiring an architect. He's pretty experienced with Goleta tract-house remodels, and we get along well with him so far. He's $100 per hour, and I'm figuring we'll end up paying him somewhere between $5K and $10K. In addition to generating the drawings and plans, he'll be responsible for getting approval from the Architectural Review Board and the necessary building permits.
This is our current floor plan, and what he has to work with:
We want to redo the kitchen (new cabinets, counter tops, appliances, floor, and ceiling. We will add a guest bedroom and bathroom in the front, but we also want to keep a separate living room, so he'll need to push forward. Miscellaneous other things: all new windows, wood floor throughout the house (except a couple bedrooms), raised ceilings in family, dining, and living rooms, refurbished fireplace, and new roof and photo-voltaic solar panels.