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June 25, 2010

The "fun" of preparing for a home renovation



You might wonder why my washer and dryer is doubling as a bookcase. Well, unless you've ever renovated your home, in which case you're probably thinking, "Boy, am I glad my books aren't on my washer and dryer anymore."

I'm trying to get the carpet replaced -- partly with laminate, partly with new carpet. Today, the laminate goes in, so everything but the furniture had to come out of the living room (hello laundry room, bathroom, office). Tonight, Mr. Wonk and I will be moving everything sans furniture out of the office and bedroom. It's like an exhausting game of musical chairs.

Here's the bathroom about halfway through last night's routine:



(I didn't drink the previous contents of those boxes. No, really!)

Next week: painting and a bit of wallpapering. And new appliances to replace the 18-year-old examples in the kitchen, if all goes well.

I will be so happy when this is all done.

There was a time when I thought about moving my family of three out of the condo -- including all our stuff -- in order to renovate the place empty. But oh, moving. Twice in less than a month. So instead we're just moving all our stuff around, and it's even more obvious what a small space this is.

Tell me, folks: How have you handled the prep work for a renovation? Any great secrets for cutting down on the hassle? It's too late for me, but perhaps you can help someone else.

Posted by Jamie Smith Hopkins at 7:00 AM | | Comments (5)
Categories: Renovation/rehab


I am about to start the same project that you are doing. Except I am renting one of those pod things. I am turning two small bedrooms into one big bedroom and creating a new guest space. So fun for me. I was going to do the furniture shuffle but decided against it. Too much stuff.

When my wife and I put a new floor in our kitchen all the furniture as ell as refrigerator and stove ended up in our dinning room for 3 days. Thankfully it was only 3 days, but I feel your pain.

Kim, that's a good idea. If my condo were on the first floor rather than the second (with no elevator), I probably would have gone the pod route, too. Good luck with your project!

Paul, thanks for sharing your tale of woe!

I feel your pain. We've been working on house projects since we moved in and since we're changing EVERYTHING there's no safe place to stash our stuff--we just keep shuffling it from room to room. I don't recommend this approach!

Home renovation is a pain to start and the progress may be slow but once you are done, it will feel really wonderful. I renovated my bathroom over the holiday season and it took a lot of work, more than I had anticipated. However, now when I look at my bathroom, I am glad that I did it. I am sure this is how you will feel when all is done :)

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About Jamie Smith Hopkins
Jamie Smith Hopkins, a Baltimore Sun reporter since 1999, writes about the regional economy. Her reporting on the housing market has won national and local awards. Hopkins is a Columbia native and has lived in Maryland all her life, save for 10 months spent covering schools in Ames, Iowa.
She trained to become a wonk by spending large chunks of time as a geek and an insufferable know-it-all.
Baltimore Sun articles by Jamie

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