Dirty Jobs

The curse of buying an old house is that there are always repairs to be done that cost a lot of money and are no fun at all.

We knew this going into it.  It's not a surprise to us.

Our house was built in 1956 and thankfully the construction, materials and overall quality of the house is top notch.  But maintenance is required and can become pricey.  Since buying the house, we've had to replace the roof, which had not been redone since it was built over 50 years ago!  This depleted our savings ($13,000), but it was worth it since we probably wont have to think about it again for another 50 years! 

This was a dirty job.

After pealing back our old roof and hauling away all the dirt, they had to lay down tar.  And tar stinks... like really, really stinks.  The entire interior of the home stunk like tar for over 2 days.  After they laid down the roofing strips, they sprinkled small pebbles all over. And when it rained, all those pebbles came down to our driveway, creating a sand-like mess all over the place! 

That dirty job is complete!

Before we moved in, we had to get the pool cleaned. It was absolutely disgusting.  It looked more like a swamp than a pool.  It was green, thick and mucky... and I'm pretty sure it had become a haven for mosquito mating.  Gross, gross, gross.  

I contacted a pool guy about cleaning it and he quoted me at $600 to start and if it was really, really bad, the price would be higher.

Well, my husband, Mr. FixIt, did NOT intend on spending that much money on a job he could easily do himself.  So he and his dad rented a pump and drained the pool of all the swampy water.  Then they pressure cleaned the sides and literally had to scoop out the remaining gunk.  It. Was. Gross. 

This was a dirty job. I did have pictures of this dirty job but I think it may have been so gross that I deleted them!

But thankfully, that dirty job is complete and our pool is a gorgeous shade of crystal blue now and we saved over $600!

Once we drained the pool, we realized that we do not have city sewer... we have the dreaded septic tank!  This too can be expected when buying an older home... but ewwwww, seriously?!

The frightening part was that we had no idea the condition of our tank.  The close of the house came with no paperwork for it, so we had no clue.  We called a company to get it pumped because we figured we may as well take care of it BEFORE a problem arrose.  And, once it was empty, we could actually KNOW the state of the tank.  

This was a dirty job.

The septic company quoted us at $250 for the pumping, but when he found, dug up and opened the tank, the condition of it was so bad, that he had to raise the price nearly double!  I was standing there when he opened it up and the smell... it just smacked me square in the face. The tank was full... to the top.  The man told us that we were lucky if we had a few more months before it started backing up... into our house.  Boy, what a mess that would have been!  He told us that the tank was supposed to consist of 90% water and 10% waste... but ours was about 90% waste with 10% water... it was a thick disgusting mess.  He said septic tanks are supposed to be pumped every 2-3 years, but it looked like our tank had not been cleaned in over 15 years!  
That's 15 years worth of crap!  Ahhh, sooooo gross!!!

So nearly $500 later, this dirty job is complete!  And thankfully, we don't have to think about our tank for 3 more years.

There are more dirty jobs around our house to be done.  Mauricio has been trimming and pulling trees for weeks now and there's still so much to do.  The screen above our pool is falling apart and needs to be reattached but there are tons of spider webs up there.  And we also need to fumigate since we have lots of little sugar ants and worms coming into our house on a daily basis!

Unfortunately all of these dirty jobs cost a pretty penny, which is taking all of our "fun house money" away.  I want our "fun house money" for buying furniture, picking exterior paint colors, and basically beautifying.

But I know I have to be patient and get the dirty work done first.

Ahh, the joys of homeownership!


Shawna said...

Ewwww! Iowa has a law that the septic has to be inspected *before* a house can be sold...and any pumping/repairs/etc. are legally required to be done and paid by the seller! That's totally gross that yours hadn't been done in so long---good thing you caught it in time! :-)

Danielle-Marie said...

Oh you poor thing. I literally cringed reading the bit about the pool and septic tank system.

We had to replace our furnace and do work to the roof of the house when we moved in. But we had a home inspector come in and check all of that stuff out for us before we placed an offer. Part of the closing deal on the house was that the previous owners had to give us a certified cheque to help cover for those expenses. My husband...shoulda been a negotiator.

Your home looks lovely!

Danielle-Marie said...

P.S. My house is 100 years old +! I think the older homes have character, don't ya think?