–I found a great handyman (Mike) who can complete the job without my having to sell a kidney to afford it.
–I have pulled out two layers of soggy, moldy vinyl flooring, so it smells better.
–I have pulled down cardboard-thin paper walls and composite board studs that were attached to the concrete wall, both of which we also holding moisture. Removing them also helped the smell.
–Mike is replacing any rotting or moldy studs.
–The new shower is mold free and will have actual water shut-off valves (two niceties the old shower did not have).
–Upon further inspection, Mike discovered that the homeowner from hell who installed this bath the first time did it by cutting through a return air duct, which he did not reroute or replace. This explains why the office is always so cold. So an HVAC guy is down there right now, figuring out a way to fix this inexplicable remodeling decision.
–The HVAC guy also informed me that the booming noise I hear every time the furnace fan cuts out is called “oil canning,” and is the result of the metal ductwork popping in and out based on air flow. He’s going to fix it by reinforcing it with a bar across the duct.
–We will be installing a panel door and replacing the vanity with a pedestal sink (both of which I’ve already purchased), so even though the bath is still going to be small, at least it will be easier to maneuver in.
–Today’s goals are to fix the HVAC, pull up styrofoam basement insulation on the exterior wall (which Mike had to go to three different Lowes stores to find), replace some studs, install the pocket door, and install the shower. Mike will then call the drywall guys. Once the drywall guys are done, I’ll paint and install floor tile (tune in for future hilarity, as this will be my first tiling experiment). Then Mike will come back and install the sink and toilet. He’ll also finish up electrical and install a wall cabinet and medicine cabinet.
Ginny moves in on Saturday, so obviously the bathroom won’t be ready. I’m hoping to have it all done within the next couple of weeks. Stay tuned for further adventures!