When Dave & I decided to move out of Maine and down to South Carolina one of our reasons was the real estate market. We work with a group of investors spread all across the country - and we wanted to get into a market that was a little more active than Maine. :)
So we picked Charleston...
And along came the pretty (haha.....um...) house at 4730 Darlene St. - or as we so fondly dubbed it, "The Cat House".
Before / Living Room
When we purchased the house there was a cat locked inside - so EVERY floor was covered in cat feces and urine. Come to find out there had been over 15 cats living there previously!
After / Living Room
Goodbye cat smell!!! (and all flooring....walls...old windows....paneling.....ANYTHING that could have some remaining cat grossness on it.
Before & After / Entryway
When we first looked at the house the front door hardly opened....because it was scraping over so much cat waste.....disgusting. We decided the wall had to go - along with the wallpaper, vinyl flooring, and cat poo.
Before / Kitchen
When we first bought the house we thought maybe we could save the cabinets and just refinish them....after closer inspection we realized this was going to be totally impossible - so we ripped it all out.
After / Kitchen
The kitchen is probably my favorite transformation - from a dark cramped room to open and bright. It only took us knocking down two walls, removing tons of old cabinets and paneling, and replacing everything with new and shiny!
Before / Bonus Room
The room over the garage was a DISASTER. It was totally flea infested, covered in poop (like the rest of the house) and the carpet and paneling was in awful shape.
After / Bonus Room
We decided to hang a barn door over the bonus room stairway - plus we raised the height of the doorway substantially. No more fleas and broken paneling!
Before / Dining Room
After / Dining Room
Before / Master Bathroom
Yes, that disgustingness is ALL cat feces. Gross. We ended up pushing the wall back and extending the bathroom another four-ish feet to make room for the master shower.
After / Master Bathroom
Porcelain tile, marble-topped vanities, all new plumbing = facelift complete!
Before / Main Bathroom
The floor looks solid in this photo - but it was actually COMPLETELY rotted through. As soon as we broke through the tile during demo the floor crashed right down through. Needless to say we ripped the entire room to the studs.
After / Main Bathroom
Before / Master Bedroom
The master bedroom doesn't look horrible, but there was a hole in the floor where the shower from the bathroom had leaked through and rotted the wood about two feet wide by eight feet long. Big project there!
After / Master Bedroom
The best part of the finished product is you can't even see where the new hardwood was pieced in to replace the old rotted stuff!!
Before / Backyard
After / Backyard
Such an amazing project! We are so happy with the final product, and can't wait for whoever the new family/owner is to close on it and enjoy all of our hard work!
If you want a little more information on the house, check out the listing here!
When you're moving you've gotta have options.....for us those options have been (painfully and slowly) narrowed down to two: Charleston, SC & Savannah, GA.
My husband and I didn't go on a honeymoon for a couple of different reasons, (partially because paying for a wedding wiped out our honeymoon fund) one being that we needed to explore the places we plan to move to! With all the other traveling we're doing this summer it was tough to fit in, but we were able to take a 4 day research trip!
We flew in and out of Savannah, GA - so the first day (Thursday) was basically air travel, and then driving up to Charleston, SC.
I've gotta be honest - at this point in the trip I was pretty much settled on Savannah, only because of it's placement right on I-95, and the fact that it's right in between Florida & South Carolina - but Dave was pretty set on Charleston....so driving there first was a really mostly to appease him. (Don't tell him I said that).
We our first night at the Courtyard Marriott in the historic district basically just because it was a self-park, and Dave hates valet parking....but it was probably the best thing we could have done, because their concierge is AMAZING! If you ever take a trip down there and want a place to stay, I'd suggest this place. Not because the hotel is amazing (it's nice, don't get me wrong, but it's basically the same as every other Marriott) but because you'll get some awesome insights into the city through the concierge.
Through the concierge we ate dinner at a great place called Coast - the food was good, but our favorite part was the building! (We're nerds....)
The concierge also set us up on a great historical walking tour of the city with a guide named Tommy Dew....literally the best tour I've ever been on. It was a little longer than 90 minutes, and he gave us an AWESOME history of the city and the south in general.
Since both Dave and I are history nerds (as mentioned above...) :-) we probably enjoyed the walking tour of Charleston more than any other part of our trip, which is saying a lot! We took tons of photos, and thankfully the weather was beautiful, we weren't really too hot until the very end of the tour.
The walking tour ended at the battery wall (and unfortunately so do my photos of Charleston) so Dave and I decided to head back to get our car and go see the local beaches. FYI, the local beaches are BEAUTIFUL. I left my camera in our hotel room when we went so I can't share the beauty yet, but after this visit I think we were both about 90% on board that Charleston (already) won the "where shall we move" competition.....so I'm sure I'll have more soon.
Yesterday it was 64 degrees!!! I know that doesn't sound super warm, but when you've been in weather below 30 since October it felt TROPICAL! Of course I'm a beach lover, so I had Dave drop me off at the beach near one of his inspections so I could wander and enjoy the sand instead of being inside.
The beaches in Maine are basically the polar opposite of the beaches in California - it was almost weird walking across the Maine sand after the last several beaches I've been to were on the west coast. Of course 60 degrees doesn't really justify a swimsuit, so I was wearing boots and jeans. :-) Real summer beach weather is still a few months away.
Gorgeous, right? There's nothing growing yet, most of the scene behind the beach is still pretty ugly, but I don't think it'll be long until everything is starting to get green again...especially if the sun continues to show it's beautiful face like yesterday!
Dave took the top off his Jeep - so our ride to the next inspection was amazing. My hair got a little crazy (I didn't exactly plan the correct "do" for topless ride...) :) but it felt SOOO nice to have fresh air and actual WARM sunshine!
The drive between Mount Desert Island and Sedgewick takes us about 20 minutes, and we drive through several VERY small towns...thankfully it was nice out because this time we got stuck behind a student driver....it gave me time to take some fun shots of the highlights of Ellsworth, though. :)
Classy, right? :) Most of our drive is gorgeous, so these lovely views didn't take up too much time. Check out how gorgeous the view is from this next house.
We both have sunburns on our noses, and my hair was basically an impossible tangle, but SO worth it
I hate basements. I hate dirt/grime/dank/dustiness/SPIDERS. GROSS! Thankfully my handsome guy is tougher than me, and decided to take on this project (at least the dirty demo part) by himself. We needed some extra storage, and our basement needed a face-lift. Check out what we started with:
This was the tiny storage we started with.....a dark little corner cubby, big enough to hold some paint and other supplies, but that is about it. So, he started ripping and tearing (splinters were plentiful) to clean up the space.
We (sorry....HE.....I didn't touch any of this part of the project...thus the ugly photos) ;-) removed all of the old storage, and cleaned up the corner so we were starting with a clean slate.
The new shelves we put in all have pressure-treated uprights so there is no rotting problem in the future. I don't know if we will build more, but this baseline gives us the flexibility for more storage if we decide to build it.
I started helping with this at about this point (everything was CLEAN and spider free). We decided to start the shelves six inches up from the ground, just in case of any water in the basement. Our house is a 1930's colonial, so we like to plan ahead JUST in case. We wanted to move all of our storage from the attic to the basement for convenience, but I (of course) want to make sure my stuff stays safe.
Thankfully I didn't have to do any of the dirty and gross part of this project, but I get to benefit from the completed product! I am so happy to have the space freed up in the rest of the basement so I can use my "gym" space again, and not have to work around boxes and crates and half-finished projects.
So happy to have a handyman in my house (and soon to be legally attached to me....ooo he doesn't know what he's signing up for) who cares about improving our home and living environment. <3 him long time.
Dreamer, decorator, wife, business owner, personal fitness trainer. 20-something.