Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Stage 2 - Moving the House

Now that our permits are just about ready, financing in place and contractors waiting in the wings our next step is to move the existing house on the property.

We have been looking for a new home for the house and have been inundated with responses of which most didn't pan out as people don't really think through the whole home moving issue.

At last we found a great, local family who have land and just need the home. They have been coming over everyday to prep the house for moving and have single handed removed the roof and loaded it onto trucks to move to their place to rebuild.

All the trusses and wood framing was in fantastic condition, a testament to the shake roof and the great job it did protecting the structure for over 30 years. 

The roof needed to come off completely prior to the house moving as it was an addition to the structure after the fact and was too tall to transport. The family will rebuild the roof over the house once its in place on the new property. 

They found this cedar shake that told us the roof was added in 1976 (the house was put on the property in 1973) and the shakes came from local trees and were hand split by the original owners. Every shake was removed and transported to the new property. They will use them for the chicken coop roof and some other applications. You can no longer have a wood roof in California, fire hazard.

Kyle and I also removed the back deck and front porch that were added onto the house. These were not as good construction though we have salvaged all the decent wood from these for use as shoring on the new house and a temporary deck around the camper we are living in till the house is complete.

The interior of the house is comprised of wood walls and ceilings. It was quite a feat of work and must have taken ages to complete. The walls have sheets of wood that are over 2" thick, 8' tall and up to 4'wide. All this wood was cut and milled on the property so Kyle and I pulled out quite a bit of what we wanted for the new house and can't wait to integrate it into the design in the loft area, doors and kitchen. 

It wasn't easy to remove these pieces, they were on there so well it would have taken an unprecedented act of Mother Nature to tear them down, or Kyle and I. We had to be so careful so as not to damage the existing walls or crack the wood - NOT EASY. It took up to an hour to remove one panel, we tweaked, used crow bars, made wedges out of 2x4, tried to pop nail heads just to list a few techniques we used to get these puppies off. And they weigh a TON. Now starts my fun of pulling all those nails out of the boards.....hours of enjoyment in front of me. The wood we left will be used by the family and they have some great ideas for it as a built in dining room and some other tricks up their sleeves.

Its great to know that just about all the parts of this house will be re-used and so little has gone to waste. It also makes you think hard about how you construct a house and the products you use. There is some real junk out there that doesn't last and results in some terrible waste.

The final pieces to the removal include demoing the front concrete pathway (hopefully give that away on Craigslist), cutting power and water to the structure and then at the last minute splitting it in two for transport. Both Kyle and I and the family can't wait to get it situated in its new home so that they have a house and we can jump into starting our foundation.

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