My Parade Has Been Rained On the dude at City Hall. This kitchen addition is looking more and more out of reach. I went into the building department this mornin' to see wut's doin' with my building plans. Basically, the fact that we are proposing to knock out a 10 foot load-bearing external wall (a) the current framing and foundation design done by our friend is not strong enough to support the second floor and roof, (b) we need the plans engineered: i.e. designed, drawn up with structural calculations, wet-stamped by a California Licensed Architect/Engineer. If we were in a single-story home, I think things would be easier as far as plans, permits, and construction.

After calling up one design firm, this service costs about $2000, ball-park, based on the parameters I gave the man I spoke with over the phone, who was quite helpful, I might add. Nice fellow. Anyhow. He said $1500-$2000, but the way things tend to go in life, $2000 is probably more like it. I am not surprised by this number. What's another 2K? Right?


Well, I added everything up again, based on recent research I had done courtesy of Google (cost for tile roof, stucco, foundation, etc, etc) and came up with $29,000. This is not using a GC. If I use the 21K figure from the one GC, it's probably more like $38,000. Yeah. Not so much.

Timing is another consideration. Let's say I'm totally cool with spending 30K (mind you, this is more than half our non-retirement savings), well, even if tomorrow, I went to the structural engineer and asked him to start, it's likely 3-4 weeks before that is complete. Then submitting to the city again... minimum 3-4 weeks, that's if there are no corrections. The earliest we could start this project would be November. Likely closer to December.

Three months before we start? Five months until it's complete?! I'll tell ya, the situation in the house is BAD. Holes everywhere in the kitchen waiting to be mended by this project, water-damaged cabinets, and an over dankness that is starting to emanate from the fact that the water was UNDERNEATH the cabinets, thus air doesn't really get there to help it dry out. It just gets sucked into the cabinets. I'm not so sure I can deal with this stank-ass kitchen for 4 more months, while also having my life turned upside down during construction. We are coming up on 2 months that we have been dealing with this mess.

And--as if you haven't heard me bitch enough already--the house continues to fall in value. We have lost more than 100K (since the leak? lost 15K). It seems really crazy to me to sink more than $30,000 into this house that is continuing to drop. And then after we have spent this small fortune, the rest of the house will still be languishing in it's 80's-ness, with those horrible fluorescent light-boxes in the bathrooms, ugly banister, and carpeting all upstairs. And I won't be able to do anything about it's nastiness. No wonder people would rather sell and buy another house than add-on. Makes perfect sense now! I totally get it!

I probably bored the living poop out of you guys.

I hope to make a decision with the Husband tonight - maybe we'll just scrap the addition and redo the kitchen with tall cabinets and attempt to make space where there is little... Then I'll have all kinds of crazy pictures for you! All I know is that whatever I do, it better involve my Craigslist apron sink - God help me, I will wedge that sink into that kitchen if I have to!!


  1. I say (and I know how much you want to hear my opinion!)ditch the addition...put your money into stuff you can take to the next pics so we can all strategize with you...

  2. I am so sorry to hear that your having such a hard time with this! Additions are TERRIBLE! I hope you can get it all sorted out soon! :)


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