Thursday, 16 May 2013

Always Look on the Bright Side...

I'm trying to remain positive. We had some not-so-good news from our contractor in Atlin. I appreciate his candour, but I must admit that I was initially disappointed by the news. He says that the work on the foundation can be done... it is achievable, but...

However, he warns that the project could become a "money pit." This should not come as a shock to me. My husband and I are not really surprised by this warning, but we do have to carefully evaluate our options. The contractor is going to give us a detailed assessment of the problems that he discovered in his initial look underneath the Little Blue House.

I asked if he could give us a couple of options for this summer's foundation restoration project. Option One would be a basic "let's save this tiny house" job. That would probably include adding a few new support beams and posts that would not rot in the future. This action would stop the home's slow and crooked descent into the earth. (For those of you who have not seen the photos of the foundation, you can click here.)

Option Two would be our ideal restoration, to include a vapour barrier, radon barrier, and floor insulation, in addition to extensive repairs on the support structures underneath the LBH. I imagine that this option will be out of our price range. :(

The problem is that the house, when it was moved from the Gold Rush town of Discovery over 90 years ago, was simply plunked down on the dirt where it currently stands. As I've said in the past, the LBH sits on dirt, crooked 2x4s, rotting posts, logs and broken beer bottles. At that time, people didn't see any merit in leaving a crawl space underneath houses. For us, that means that most of the excavation will have to be done by hand. Labour costs a lot of money, and we both work full time and we have 2 small children, so we don't have much time to spare ourselves. Long story short, we are going to have to compromise.

I really want to save this little house. We love it. It is historically very significant in Atlin. It is a piece of the town's colourful past as part of the Gold Rush era. It was the town's last operating brothel, for crying out loud! We can't just let it fall down. There are enough falling-down-buildings in Atlin already.

I would like to preserve it. I am trying to look on the bright side! 

The Bright Side

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