Our House

Terre Haute House Repair - Introduction

Our house is in a nice district or subdivision of Terre Haute. It was built in 1929, Patty's been living here since 1983 and I've been here since we got married in 2001. during that time the house has had the usual amount of redecorating and refurbishment but in April 2009 we found the house was in need of something a bit more than this.

What happened was that we'd been using a company called "The Bug Man" to control termites around our property. Unfortunately, things didn't work out too well with this company as they didn't seem to ever eradicate the termites completely.and so we stopped their service. About a year later, in April 2009, we went out to lunch. About an hour and a half later, when we got back we found our back "games" room full of flying bugs. I was hoping it was flying ants, but no such luck. I sprayed them with flying insect killer which is made for wasps and bees but killed the bugs off pretty quickly and called Terminix. They confirmed the bugs were termites and charged us $1,750 to inject the boundary with some chemical that is supposed to kill the actual nest. The nest can apparently be around 150 ft away and up to 40 ft underground.

Our "games" room had knotty pine paneling so, of course, all of this had to come off to look at what damage had been done to the structure of the house. I think we were pretty lucky, only around a dozen stud timbers looked like they were affected, as well as a portion of the top and bottom timbers. Of these, some of the studs looked more like layers of paper than wood and the Terminix guy said it looked like the termites had been active for around a year - which would have made that around the time we stopped having service from "The Bug Man" - oops.

Termite damage Termite damage Termite damage Termite damage

Some of the termite damage we found in the studwork

Due to the extent of the damage we decided that 2009 would be "The Year of the House" and try and concentrate on getting all the minor annoyances on the house fixed and improving it. We don't plan on moving and being in our 50's don't fancy putting off the work till we're in our 60's or 70's. The remodeling wasn't helped by the fact that both Patty and I are packrats which meant lots of our stuff had to be put into boxes and continuously shifted from place to place as the work progressed. One of our plans was to try and get rid of the some of the stuff we'd saved "just in case" and which really wasn't worth keeping in the first place, let alone being stored for years and years.

We'd like to thank Bill, his wife Jo Anne, Luke, Keith, Tony, Clint, Cory, Jamie and everyone else who worked for very reasonable rates or even for free, helping us with the house, offering advice and stopping us (well, me) from making too many mistakes.

A note on the order the photographs and text appear in this section of the site. A lot of concurrent work was done on the house so rather than being strictly chronological, where work was focused on one particular section of the house, such as the cellar stairs, nearly all the material relating to that section appears together rather than skipping from one subject to another in a strictly chronological order.

This page created 5th June 2009, last modified 2nd July 2009

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