Double Story Extension Phase 1. Weeks 1 and 2.

So we got our planning permission in December 2013 but we were living in Texas with the husbands job so didn't start any planning until we returned, plus the FIL (Father in Law) didn't have an opening until about May 2014 anyway and suited us as projects going over the summer tend to go to plan with better weather....mark my words it will now snow.

As things do the FIL other job ran over and we were away on holiday so we agreed to start in June and things kicked off last week. I dont know why I was shocked when builders started turning up, with skips and diggers but I was, it all felt a bit too real! The first thing we had to do as well, was get some forms from the planning inspector as they need to come out after each major section of the build and sign it off, this cost £700 before a spade had even touched the ground.  

Weird buildery type wood down means there is no going back apparently!

Things just got real!

The first thing to happen was the herring bone block paving was all taken up, cleaned off and stacked neatly as we will be using this to make a path down the side of the extension as sadly we cant go all the way to the wall as we are a corner so can be a road viewing hazard but it will be good for bike access etc. Then they started to dig out the foundations out , ripped out 10 Leylandii trees and the wall came down with help from our other builder fondly called "Dennis the Menace"

Block paving up...my shadow ate 9 people.

One of 8 this week alone.

Leylandii gone, digging out the foundations

Archie already got their lives "Helping"

Husband getting stuck in taking down the wall.

Its only 3 days in and we hit the first snag. I'm really going to stand up for builders here, when they give you an estimate its just that. After digging out the required amount for the foundation the building inspector doesn't pass it he said there is not enough clay showing and they have discovered some remnants of the old old house. Apparently  they used to just knock down houses and build on top where now it has to be properly excavated. 

A bit like 'Time Team' old house and found a ceramic button.

So now we have to hire a breaker £55, that one of those huge drills popular on a the Benni Bannssi video "Satisfaction"?...just Google it I actually learnt some stuff about tools. Also a few more skips at £170 a pop for all the soil. It could have ended up costing  £1-2k more in extra labour and skips but luckily they took a bit more of the concrete away and the clay showed up and passed inspection 2 days later. There are some cowboys out there but no one can plan for unforeseen problems like this so make sure you have a contingency fund. 

Front wall gone!

Husband doing some breaker action!

Day 8 hit our second problem when the skip truck went over the water Toby in our drive...sounds like I know what a Toby is but never heard of one in my life...but it broke so water started gushing out everywhere and flooding the street! We couldn't drink our water either for about 6hrs until Northumbria water came out and fixed it #drama

Then the drains all were diverted as we live on a corner have 3!! man hole covers and the new ones went in. There was a hairy moment when Archie did a big poop and flushed while the drain was open outside but luckily they were standing back!

Got to keep the builders happy/spoilt makes them work faster. #fact

Next step, concrete the foundations and pray for good weather for the brick layers starting.

Ash xox

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