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#4548123 - 10/19/17 10:41 AM Sweat Equity I am proud of
StevieC Offline


Registered: 08/21/08
Posts: 17116
Loc: Ontario, Canada
So when I bought my first house it was the ugly duckling on the street and it was 1970s interior. We spent 5 years and $50,000 and turned it into a wonderful looking house that now gets offers from realestate agents regularly without solicitation on our part.

This will eventually become a rental property but for now it is the right amount of space for us and it has an enormous backyard. We put on a 21 x 14 deck as well! shocked

Work included: New Kitchen, New Bathroom, Refinished 1940s solid redwood oak floors, paint, flooring, deck, new furnace, new plumbing, new electrical and new roof, new driveway and walkway. (All labour done by us where possible)

The house is now worth double what we paid for it only 5 years later!

Do you have similar experiences to share....








Edited by StevieC (10/19/17 10:48 AM)
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#4548125 - 10/19/17 10:44 AM Re: Sweat Equity I am proud of [Re: StevieC]
LoneRanger Offline


Registered: 07/02/07
Posts: 4055
Loc: Midwest USA
Completely transformed and looking great. Nice work !!
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#4548126 - 10/19/17 10:46 AM Re: Sweat Equity I am proud of [Re: LoneRanger]
StevieC Offline


Registered: 08/21/08
Posts: 17116
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Originally Posted By: LoneRanger
Completely transformed and looking great. Nice work !!


Thanks. It was a labour of frustration at the time because we would open up a can of worms with every project but it is nice to look back on what we built and what it is worth because of it. thumbsup
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#4548132 - 10/19/17 10:49 AM Re: Sweat Equity I am proud of [Re: StevieC]
OVERKILL Offline


Registered: 04/28/08
Posts: 36428
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Looks great!

Our old girl is 109 now and there are so many cans of worms any time you change anything.... So I feel your pain. I've replaced the plumbing so far, and some electrical, some windows, but still needs some major floor work on the main (thanks to the dogs destroying the hardwood) and the kitchen and bathroom redone.
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#4548134 - 10/19/17 10:52 AM Re: Sweat Equity I am proud of [Re: OVERKILL]
StevieC Offline


Registered: 08/21/08
Posts: 17116
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Originally Posted By: OVERKILL
Looks great!

Our old girl is 109 now and there are so many cans of worms any time you change anything.... So I feel your pain. I've replaced the plumbing so far, and some electrical, some windows, but still needs some major floor work on the main (thanks to the dogs destroying the hardwood) and the kitchen and bathroom redone.


Yeah mine is 1942 so it has seen a lot of poor workmanship over the years and then old standards that were acceptable but are no longer.

100 has got to be a real PITA. Do you have Knob & Tube wiring...
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#4548176 - 10/19/17 11:27 AM Re: Sweat Equity I am proud of [Re: StevieC]
IndyIan Offline


Registered: 09/23/08
Posts: 9092
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Looks nice!
I like that you kept the window shade, I guess they look kind of dated and many people take them off but they make a lot of sense.
The realestate market here is silly though, but I feel dumb for not buying the whole township when we moved... I don't see how it can last, given working peoples incomes, but I guess the ocean of Chinese wealth is vast and can prop the whole thing up for quite a while...
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#4548182 - 10/19/17 11:30 AM Re: Sweat Equity I am proud of [Re: StevieC]
StevieC Offline


Registered: 08/21/08
Posts: 17116
Loc: Ontario, Canada
The median income in Canada per person is about $50,000 CDN (About $38,000 USD) before income taxes and in places like Toronto houses are over $1 Million ($700,000 USD).

People are simply renting their houses from the bank. I live about 1 hour outside of Toronto (during off peak traffic times) and the houses are a fraction of that but they are rising quickly as people move here and work in Toronto. (Good for the value of my house but bad for future generations that will be priced out of the market or have to move 2 or 3 hours away just to afford a house)



Edited by StevieC (10/19/17 11:31 AM)
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#4548188 - 10/19/17 11:35 AM Re: Sweat Equity I am proud of [Re: StevieC]
OVERKILL Offline


Registered: 04/28/08
Posts: 36428
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Originally Posted By: StevieC
Originally Posted By: OVERKILL
Looks great!

Our old girl is 109 now and there are so many cans of worms any time you change anything.... So I feel your pain. I've replaced the plumbing so far, and some electrical, some windows, but still needs some major floor work on the main (thanks to the dogs destroying the hardwood) and the kitchen and bathroom redone.


Yeah mine is 1942 so it has seen a lot of poor workmanship over the years and then old standards that were acceptable but are no longer.

100 has got to be a real PITA. Do you have Knob & Tube wiring...


There are, I think, buried in parts of the house, still bits of knob and tube. The house had the wiring "updated" prior to our acquisition but I do not believe it was a full rip and replace and it was definitely done in stages.
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#4548199 - 10/19/17 11:42 AM Re: Sweat Equity I am proud of [Re: StevieC]
StevieC Offline


Registered: 08/21/08
Posts: 17116
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Double check with your insurance that you are covered until you can get that replaced because that was the first question they asked me when I went to insure this house. Luckily I have 2 conductor copper wire throughout. Ungrounded mind you but according to the NEC I can just put GFIs on it to bring it up to code without replacing the wire so that is what I did for the upstairs because the wiring is burried in the wall and not easily replaced. Main level and basement got all new copper 12 gauge even though only 14 was required.
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#4548237 - 10/19/17 12:12 PM Re: Sweat Equity I am proud of [Re: StevieC]
JHZR2 Offline



Registered: 12/14/02
Posts: 41768
Loc: New Jersey
Looks good! The painted brick is a fad but I like it... just wonder if it can be reverted back to a traditional look in the future without a lot of damage to the brick or pointing.

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#4548238 - 10/19/17 12:13 PM Re: Sweat Equity I am proud of [Re: StevieC]
Virtus_Probi Offline


Registered: 06/25/15
Posts: 3970
Loc: New England
Nice place and you should be proud of the results of your hard work!
Lots of houses with a similar look where I grew up near Chicago, although my parents built one with a slightly more rambling layout as well as an attached garage (they had to go in with a neighbor to buy 3 lots and then split the middle one to have enough room for that in their subdivision).
Becoming very common now for people who want a bigger house near the Loop but not in the city to buy the smaller 1 floor brick houses, rip off the roof, and then build a wooden full second level. Code in that town has called for brick since the middle of the last century, but I guess there was a loophole that allowed wood above the first floor.

Is that your panel truck in the driveway?
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#4548243 - 10/19/17 12:16 PM Re: Sweat Equity I am proud of [Re: JHZR2]
StevieC Offline


Registered: 08/21/08
Posts: 17116
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Originally Posted By: JHZR2
Looks good! The painted brick is a fad but I like it... just wonder if it can be reverted back to a traditional look in the future without a lot of damage to the brick or pointing.


Its a long lasting all weather paint but that said I have nicked it in a few spots and you can see the yellow brick underneath so I would imagine a steel brush or a light sandblasting would bring it back. We were thinking of doing the insulated siding on the whole house if we stay put but I think we are going to move and make this a rental along with another rental I have saved up to buy cash and then use these two rentals to pay a mortgage on the big house. smile
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#4548249 - 10/19/17 12:17 PM Re: Sweat Equity I am proud of [Re: Virtus_Probi]
StevieC Offline


Registered: 08/21/08
Posts: 17116
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Originally Posted By: Virtus_Probi
Nice place and you should be proud of the results of your hard work!
Lots of houses with a similar look where I grew up near Chicago, although my parents built one with a slightly more rambling layout as well as an attached garage (they had to go in with a neighbor to buy 3 lots and then split the middle one to have enough room for that in their subdivision).
Becoming very common now for people who want a bigger house near the Loop but not in the city to buy the smaller 1 floor brick houses, rip off the roof, and then build a wooden full second level. Code in that town has called for brick since the middle of the last century, but I guess there was a loophole that allowed wood above the first floor.

Is that your panel truck in the driveway?


Thanks thumbsup

The driveway is shared with the neighbour and its a cube truck because he is a plumber. The van in the driveway is my dads.
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'15 Dodge Journey - 90,000 KM's - SSO 5w20
'06 Hyundai Santa Fe - 535,000km - SSO 0w30 (R.I.P)

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#4548341 - 10/19/17 01:43 PM Re: Sweat Equity I am proud of [Re: IndyIan]
Lolvoguy Offline


Registered: 02/06/14
Posts: 2328
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: IndyIan
Looks nice!
I like that you kept the window shade, I guess they look kind of dated and many people take them off but they make a lot of sense.


I think it's a great feature that would help in summer. Especially if there isn't A/C

Originally Posted By: IndyIan

The realestate market here is silly though, but I feel dumb for not buying the whole township when we moved... I don't see how it can last, given working peoples incomes, but I guess the ocean of Chinese wealth is vast and can prop the whole thing up for quite a while...


Tell me about it!
I live on the other side of Canada and this is just silly.
So many people are simply renting (including myself)as buying is out of reach for sooo many.
We have a decent down payment of 200k, but we'd still be paying a mortgage of 200-300k for a condo. PLUS the monthly maint fees, strata, etc.
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#4548454 - 10/19/17 04:03 PM Re: Sweat Equity I am proud of [Re: StevieC]
LoneRanger Offline


Registered: 07/02/07
Posts: 4055
Loc: Midwest USA
Originally Posted By: StevieC
Originally Posted By: JHZR2
Looks good! The painted brick is a fad but I like it... just wonder if it can be reverted back to a traditional look in the future without a lot of damage to the brick or pointing.


Its a long lasting all weather paint but that said I have nicked it in a few spots and you can see the yellow brick underneath so I would imagine a steel brush or a light sandblasting would bring it back. We were thinking of doing the insulated siding on the whole house if we stay put but I think we are going to move and make this a rental along with another rental I have saved up to buy cash and then use these two rentals to pay a mortgage on the big house. smile


Yellow bricks... I can definitely understand why you painted it. I don't like the look of yellow bricks it is a permanent 1950's stamp and just makes a house look sad and tired. Your remodel makes the place look fresh and remarkable. Always paint yellow bricks. All day. Every day. Don't look back.

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