Renovating Houses

Somebody please shoot me if I threaten to buy another house that needs renovation. Truth is, I am not a lover of Do-It-Yourself. I am a lover of visualizing the end product, of adding value, of maximising potential. I am a great dreamer. But I am a lazy-arse when it comes to the reality of spending every evening and weekend perched precariously up a ladder painting ceilings in poor light because the wiring hasn’t been finished yet or wandering zombie-like around yet another warehouse full of building supplies trying to take yet another decision about some product I  don’t really understand the workings of and the full implications of which won’t become clear until we have already fitted it and it is too late to return it and now we must live with it forever….. And don’t get me started on the perils of managing workmen.


So, this happened…. Builder broke our new granite worktop. Doh! Another week without a sink or cooker it is then…

Last night, as we embarked on the hour-long car journey back home (top tip: if you really must take on a renovation project, make sure it’s close to where you live) I mentally totted up my tally of DIY points for the weekend.

#1 I had actually brought one (small, simple) task to completion: 10 points.
Possibly the worst part about renovating is the endless fiddly jobs and the seemingly never getting anywhere. Or going backwards. The old one step forward two steps back reno-tango. Which brings me to:
#2 Plugged some gaps above bathroom ceiling with expanding foam: 5 points.
#3 Foam ‘expanded’ all the way through the ceiling and down our beautiful new tiles: -10 points.
#4 Spent an hour scraping dried foam off shower tiles with a razor blade: 0 points.
#5 Fitted impulse buy of massive balcony doors in back of car: 5 points
#6 Didn’t get stopped and fined by Guardia Civil for driving the 40 minutes home with doors poking out of the boot: 10 points
#7  3 bickers and 1 argument with other half* (*these figures are entirely fictitious. Would be very unhealthy if actually counted.): -10 points.
#8  Did not kill OH: 10 points
#9 OH did not kill me: 20 points.

Now this is my kind of DIY. Instant, easy results. On the home straight and waxing up furniture. Yay!

Now this is my kind of DIY. Instant, easy results. On the home straight and waxing up furniture. Yay!

As you can see, we are actually winning. There is light at the end of the tunnel. Normal life is so close I can almost touch it. So what on earth was I doing, in a snatched hour of freedom last Saturday, wandering round yet another gorgeous traditional stone-built house that oozed potential and charm despite the wind whistling through its many gaps, picturing myself living there? Somebody stop me, please. It’s an illness….. (Or maybe just an occupational hazard….)









  1. The renovation all sounds very exciting and very stressful….. I’ve got all this ahead of me next year when we take on the rebuild of our home *sighs*. X

  2. I haven’t ever renovated a property – upgrading a kitchen or bathroom is about my limit and then I’m stressed for weeks. You must be a masochist, woman, or is it just the pleasure you get from the results?
    Will watch with interest and see if you fall for this next one!

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