We were contracted by homeowners to completely renovate their new little weekend getaway home on the Chickahominy River. At 535 sq/ft, it certainly qualifies as a tiny house renovation! While the homeowners wanted to create as much functional space as possible while maintaining the cottage-y charm, we also have to abide by more building codes than were originally in place when the home was built 50+ years ago. So, after multiple design meetings and conversations with the architect and local county code enforcers to discuss exactly how/what could be done, we were on our way. When we arrived, the homeowners had started some of the interior demolition on their own, so this is what we began with….
We spent the first two weeks finishing the demo (which included ripping down all the existing studs and reinforcing the ceiling/roof) and re-framing the interior. The new interior plan was to slightly increase the (still tiny) size of the bathroom, create just enough space for one bedroom to house a king bed and built-in shelves, and for the other bedroom to contain two twin beds situated in an L-shape. A kitchen nook was created for cabinets, refrigerator and appliances, and a loft was built on top of the wall framing as an area for storage and/or extra sleeping space (a la tent-camping style).
Once we finished framing the interior, we moved to the exterior. We first demolished an old lean-to style shed (and discovered it was built on almost 12″ concrete that needed to be chopped out….and then Phil made an appointment at the chiropractor the following week….) and we were then able to pour a new concrete footer and build an attached storage shed to house the water heater, well pump, and miscellaneous outdoor necessities. The side porch roofline got extended to meet the new shed and framed to create a covered “sleeping porch” (per the homeowner) and then connect to the front porch. Both the side and front porch include enough posts to screen in the entire area. Concrete was also poured for an outdoor fireplace that will later have custom stonework up the sides, back, and extending up the chimney.
Speaking of the chimney, of course we saved the roof for the hottest days of the summer (ugh!). After Phil had finished framing up the upper half of the chimney, with a heat index of 117 degrees (F), we ripped off all the old shingles and tar paper, replaced any damaged boards, and re-roofed the whole thing. And then I seriously wanted to die. See that comfy-looking concrete slab in front of the invisible fireplace? I laid on that concrete for quite sometime, debating whether I wanted to puke or pass out. Thankfully, neither happened, and we moved on.
While I was considering my life goals and aspirations on a hot tar roof and later my cement bed, the other trades were able to get some of their work done on the inside so that we will have all new plumbing, electrical, and hvac in the very near future. And then, just like that, the demo, framing, and treacherous days were behind us. So…anyone want to guess what’ll be coming up next…? Hint: it may be in some of those boxes pictured below….
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