The Joys of Home Renovation

Ian and Stephanie bought this little house here in Ohio and they’ve been fixing it up since they moved in back in September. It wasn’t a shithole, but it wasn’t exactly the tidiest, most up to date place on the block. They replaced all of the windows, tore up all the carpet and had the hardwood floors refinished, cleaned it top to bottom, repainted the whole downstairs, and we’ve been working on scraping, sanding and repainting the doors.

They hired a contractor to come in on Monday and pull out the shitty rotting half-insulated crap in the big room upstairs and put up new drywall, so the house has been full of dust and rather messy this week cause all the stuff from the upstairs (which they use as the Master bedroom) is now in the living room and Ian’s office.

So Stephanie and I spent most of today covered in paint and primer, working on the upstairs room now that the drywall’s done.

What we realized after the contractors left and we started to prep the room for painting was that… they had done a really shitty job. Not knowing much about drywall and wanting them to get the hell out of the house after 3 days of work on a job that was supposed to take “a day or two” we pushed them out of the house without insisting that they reputty the walls and fucking sand them properly, and then the three of use found ourselves staring at the cold, hard reality of unsanded drywall paste, loose tape seams, uncovered nail holes and divets in the drywall.

Steph, Ian, and I spent the morning hand sanding and puttying; then Steph and I started putting on the primer.

After the second coat, we realized things weren’t looking much better.

“Oh dear lord this is bad,” I said.

“Well, they practically did it for free,” Stephanie said. “Five hundred in labor for three people over three days is, basically free.”

“But you did pay them five hundred dollars,” I said.

“Let me keep thinking it was free. If I admit we paid them for this shit I’m going to cry.”

We slathered on some more paste after the first coat of primer, put on the second coat, made a couple runs to Home Depot for more paint, and then put on the first layer of paint.

Ian arrived home, went upstairs and took a look and said, “Um, you guys realize this looks like crap, right?”

“Yes,” we said, “Yes we do.”

“But they practically did it for free,” he said.

Ian suggested we rent a sprayer and texture the walls. Maybe it’ll make the bad paste job sort of, you know, blend in.

I mean, it’s not a bad job really.

It was practically free.

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