The Flip: Demolition Week

Week one was a busy week! I must say that I surprised myself with how much demo I could do on my own.

I completely gutted the kitchen and bathroom and tore up the existing parquet flooring in the living room and one bedroom. The floor tear-out wasn’t the original plan, but it ended up being the perfect solution to some other issues we would have faced if we had opted to lay the hardwood over them. Once the flooring was out, it leveled out the main floor and allowed us to avoid issues with the front door once the hardwood gets put down.

Taking up the floors was easier than I anticipated and there were no “oh shit” moments in the process which was a relief. The cost to take up the floors was free (along with a good night of sleep at the end), and it provided a savings of $500+

The video is me taking up the flooring. The parquet was nailed into 3/4 in. plywood which was nailed to the sub flooring (it should have been screwed, but it was to our advantage that it hadn’t been). I used a circular saw to cut small sections to the depth of the plywood. Once the a piece was cut I was able to easily pull up the sections from sub flooring.

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Here you can see the different layers. The red/brown is the sub flooring that was underneath the plywood and parquet. It was in great condition which was a blessing.

Below are a couple of videos to show the progress from day one to day seven. It’s hard to see a big difference, but it’s there, I promise!

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Some other tasks crossed off the list were window install, AC install and prep for the drywall repairs.

We weren’t sure when the window install would be able to happen due to weather. But I ordered them before closing in hopes of having them ready when the weather cooperated.  It ended up warming up in that first week and we were able to get done! This was a big relief to me.

I can’t say enough good things about my window installer, Wholesale Window World in Gridley, IL. Tim is fantastic. He delivers a high-quality window and charges only $100 per window install. Labor and materials for 12 custom sized, Simonton windows cost about $5,700. Shop this around and you’ll find it very hard to beat that install price. At any box store you pay for the labor, not quality of the window. Tim said to me over and over that his end goal is for his client to pay for a good window, not the labor to install. Not to mention he lent me a hand with multiple things while we were working in the house together. Assisting with cabinet take down, capping the water lines I cut (also mentioned in Prep & Planning), helping me get ready for the drywall install, and he took it upon himself to make some minor siding repairs. I honestly feel like I would not have gotten half of what I got done in that first week if not for Tim.

For the AC install…there was no central AC in the home when I bought it so I knew this would be a cost from the beginning.  Labor and materials for the AC cost $2,500. Paul Schulz with Schulz Heating and Cooling is my go-to for anything HVAC. He is extremely responsive, competitive, and an all around nice guy. I use him for all of my personal work and refer his name as often as I can. The first morning working in the house there was no heat. I assumed the thermostat was out of batteries, but after switching them… still no heat. I called Paul that morning and he was there within 15 minutes. He determined the furnace was fine and that it just needed a new thermostat. Since I would need a new one after the AC install anyway, he switched them out that morning for no cost, not even a service charge.

What I’ve learned so far…

  • How to properly work the safety guard on a circular saw. Although no guarantees I will remember in the future.
  • How to use a dump trailer. Thanks to my boyfriend, Blaise
  • How to take apart (and put together) a kitchen. Take down sounds self-explanatory, but when you’re taking it all apart, you understand how it’s all put together in the first place, which in turn makes it easier to demo…if that makes any sense at all.
  • It’s hard to beat the feeling of hard work and progress.
  • Prior planning for major aspects of this flip has already paid off greatly. 

All in all it was a busy and successful first week! Although I go through a rollercoaster of emotions daily, I’m loving doing the work and seeing the progress.

Thanks for following along!



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