The problem with painting an old home

The addition of window hoods to the house - although awaiting iron sheeting - adds a decorative as well as practical element to the front of the house.

The addition of window hoods to the house – although awaiting iron sheeting – adds a decorative as well as practical element to the front of the house.

This week the exterior of the house gained a bit more Queenslander decoration; the addition of two timber awnings over the front windows. They still need to be kitted out with some iron, but you can start to see how they will look and also how they will shade the windows. The house had a metal window hood on the now upper window when we bought it, however this didn’t seem to suit the house. These new ones are more in keeping with the original style of the home and complement the single skin look I mentioned in last week’s post. Oh, and we didn’t take the old hood to the tip, we put it out on the front nature strip and when I looked out about an hour later it was gone, freecycling at it’s best.

The builders were only here a couple of days this week. Unfortunately they had to wait for materials to turn up, namely the three new side windows for the bedrooms. Thankfully the windows turned up on Friday and they were able to start working on installing them, you can see two of them installed in the above photo. The builders probably didn’t appreciate the muggy weather we are currently experiencing here in Brisbane as they knocked off around 1pm, I don’t blame them. I’m looking forward to that storm they are predicting today.

I was chatting to the painter on Friday about his ideas for the timber staircase – clear water based, satin finish varnish – and we got talking about the amount of work involved in painting an old house. He said he usually doesn’t touch old Queenslanders because of all the work preparing and repairing the VJ boards and filling gaps, and he’s not wrong; there were holes from old wiring to plug, nail and staple holes and plenty of chips in the old timber VJ’s to putty as well as the gaps between the timbers to fill both inside and outside the house.

Stairwell after the painter has finished.

Stairwell after the painter has finished.

The stairwell of the Queenslander before paint.

The stairwell of the Queenslander before paint.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then there is also the problem of dealing with lead paint in some of these older houses and the odd bit of asbestos, thankfully not in this house. I’m glad he made an exception for us though, he is doing a fantastic job and the paint finish is transforming the whole look of the place. It now looks clean and inviting with a modern edge. Once I get lights installed I may even be able to take better pictures to be able to show that!

A single glass screen has been added to the downstairs bathroom, keeping with the theme of wheelchair accessibility downstairs

A single glass screen has been added to the downstairs bathroom, keeping with the theme of wheelchair accessibility downstairs

 

Apart from the painter quietly plugging away at the upstairs of the house, and the tiler returning to complete the final tiling in the wet areas, it was a relatively quiet week. Well that was until Friday, then it seemed like all the trades turned up at once. The builders of course were on site fitting the windows, the concreter was preparing holes and form work for the steps and hot water stand, along with the electrician who was installing fans and light fittings and the glazier fitting the shower screens. Yep, I now have shower screens, no water connection but hey, the screens look good. Plumber booked in for next week.

 

It looks like we are on track for an Easter completion, although the vinyl floor covering in the main areas won’t be installed till after Easter. I am looking forward to moving back in and enjoying the fruits of someone else’s labour (after physically completing a number of renovations it is so nice to say that).

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5 thoughts on “The problem with painting an old home

  • July 24, 2015 at 2:13 am
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    That stairwell looks so much nicer with the new paint. The poor thing was cracking and peeling by the looks of it. All you need now is a bit more light to make that stairwell look better, that or the picture is just extremely dark for some reason.

    Reply
    • August 4, 2015 at 8:24 am
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      It’s very light now, the western sun coming in those small windows makes it look darker. It was in a bad state before but that was mainly because of the renovation work and moving walls rather than poor maintenance, I’m glad I didn’t have to do the actual painting though, it was a fiddly job.

      Reply
      • August 4, 2015 at 10:17 pm
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        I wouldn’t have wanted to to it either, all the grooves and such would be difficult to make even. Also, I didn’t realize that the before picture was taken during renovation, and I apologize for assuming otherwise. I hope that you enjoy your new, brighter stairwell!

        Reply
  • November 5, 2015 at 7:18 am
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    So glad you guys didn’t have to deal with lead paint. That’s what we’re going through right now with our remodel. But I’m glad to know about it now and deal with it, rather than leaving it as-is!

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    • November 25, 2015 at 7:00 am
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      Yes so glad that we were not painting the place. Also the paintwork on the place was in good condition – it had been painted by the previous owners within the last 10 years – which meant they had already dealt with the lead paint, our builder just had to clean and paint over the top.

      Reply

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