Saturday, July 26, 2014

We Just Had Our First Official Open House!

And well, it was kinda underwhelming...
Only 5 people showed up....sigh...

Here's the ad I put up on Craig's List.
$3000 / 3br - 1400ft² - Brand New 3bed2bath apartment in Alamedas Gold Coast (alameda)             
3BR / 2Ba 1400ft2 apartment available sep 01
laundry in bldg street parking
no smoking
Open House Dates
saturday 2014-07-26
Hello Apartment Seekers,
We have a very nice three bedroom two bathroom
basement apartment for rent starting Sept 1st.
This is one unit in a triplex.
The house is located in the Gold Cost neighborhood
of Alameda two blocks from Franklin School and park.
It is a good sized unit with a big master bedroom and
a huge master closet.
Everything is new in this unit.
When its done there will be: frig (ice and water in door), gas stove, microwave over the stove, dishwasher, garbage disposal.

Here's the catch:
Its not done yet....we are working mightily on finishing the
unit but it will not be done until the last week of August.
So, yes, we are asking people to walk through the unfinished
apartment and make a commitment without seeing the finished product.

For everything you ever wanted to know about the apartment, the house
its in, and the owners-landlords please go here.

So, think about it, read the blog, and then email me if you're still interested in
coming and taking a tour.
Open House This Sat 1-3pm.
Walk down the driveway, the entrance to the basement unit is at the back of the house.

So yea only five people...two of which obviously hadn't managed to read the ad
at all....Its a basement apartment??? What? How can you rent something in this

Well, I can kinda understand the apartment looks like this right now.

The high end kitchen
When I was giving the tours I was like, 'And here's where the frig will go, and the stove,
and the cabinets...ya just gotta use your imagination....ha...

The Luxurious Master Bedroom
 Ahem, I keep forgetting that the average person doesn't seem to have much of an
My way of thinking is, that this will give someone with the brains and imagination to
take advantage of the situation on a nice rental apartment in a great area.

What will probably end up happening is that we will have to wait to finish the entire thing
then when it looks all pretty and high-endy we'll have a bunch of schmucks in here
getting into a bidding war or something stupid like that...

A Home Depot Rant
Went to Home Despot the other day to buy some 'all purpose' joint compound for the walls.
Brought home an expired container with a bunch of hardened chunks in it. Take it back for a
refund and get a couple more buckets...they're expired also! In fact EVERY SINGLE BUCKET
of the stuff was expired....
I don't know which numbnutz's own stock in that company.....but you should really think about
selling it all...

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Whoo! Passed The Screw Inspection!

Ya, I agree that its kinda silly to pay a building inspector to come to your
house and count the screws in the drywall...

But, ya know what? The drywall we demo'd was mostly being held up with
about 6 screws per sheet...a heck of a lot less than they should of been.
Ya wanna know why? Cause the job was done without permits!

Exciting picture of drywall and screws in the master closet.

Our inspector checked every room and every ceiling for proper screw placement
and spacing...don't know how he does it. I was starting to get woozy looking at
all of those screws on the white background...

Up Next:
Lots and lots of mudding and taping...lots and lots and lots of mudding and taping.
We are planning on doing this ourselves but I am worried about the time its
going to take...

Permit Expires in 29 days.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Drywall Almost Done!!!!!!!!!!!

Well, at least the hanging part.
Yay for moonlighting union drywallers!!!
Dang can those guys work,... ah, to be 25 again...
In two loooong days two young men got almost
the entire apartment hung!

The funky angles and things is what slowed them
down, or so they say...

Some Exciting Pics Of Drywall!!!!

Here's the hallway with the soffit.

The Family Room

The Two Bedrooms

The Kitchen
The drywallers loved all the outlets in this room....ahem...

Dining Room
And the bath off the kitchen...

Master Bath

Hallway to Master Bath
You can even see the ceiling is done in the Master Bath.

What Didn't Get Done

The master closet

My F up
I forgot about a conduit I needed to add to this area...

Well, it was a weekend of hell with them starting work each day at 7am and
going 10hrs....
The kids thought that the sound the drywall screws make when they are run in
was hilarious. 'Who Tooted!!!', 'Daddy, did you toot???'

Here's the reason why I hired two moonlighting union guys...FAST!!! and cheap.
The two legit bids we got for the job were basically the same, $7500. Yikes! I had
no idea it would cost that
Went and bought the drywall and screws myself ~$1300.
Hired the two guys to install it...                             $1600.
So far its cost me $2900 and I think its money well spent.
I wish they would of finished, but dang they were beat come Sunday night.

Now I gotta find some union tapers!


Thursday, July 17, 2014

Our Second Inspection....

We did super great on it!!!
Just passed our 2nd official inspection!
Got the okay to cover!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

It really seemed to me like the BI was getting
pressure from above to, 'just pass the damn thing
and get him out of our hair!' Fine with me...yay
greasy wheel!

Now, my drywall subbed bailed on me and I have to
find another one. Yikes!

Just got a call from a couple of union drywall hangers.
Say that standard for them is to hang 50 sheets a day!
They say they can get the entire apartment done in two days!
Got to get 100 sheets of drywall to the house tomorrow...might
have to do it myself...hope not...

Wow, if they can get it hung over the weekend we can start the mudding
taping on Monday!
Wow, we might actually get this thing done on time.....
Now, if we just don't run out of money.....

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Our 1st Real Inspection

We just got done with our first real inspection!
It went well I think.
The inspector made his rounds and WOW! this guy
looked at EVERYTHING!!!!
He found a bunch of minor stuff and one admittedly
big thing.

The big thing
I had completely forgotten to install fire blocking
between the basement furring walls. This is bad
as smoke/fire in the wall will have access to the
horizontal floor joist bay. This is the kind of
health and safety thing where inspectors can
be so useful.
The house didn't have any before? Why?, done
without permits, that's why.

Little Things
Wanted some e boxes switched out.
Wanted me to add more supports to horizontal
runs of piping.
We used the wrong duct tape...he have to cover
it with the correct kind.
I had my 12-2 romex bundled in the chase in too
big a bundle, so he wanted me to split it up.
Cap the old sink stub out in the master bath.

That's it!
Not too bad right?
Well we're going to get it all done as he's inspecting
tomorrow at 2pm....then we could actually, really,
get our okay to cover....

Permit expires Aug 20th.....the race is on!

Monday, July 14, 2014

Good News on Building Permit Front.

I love, love, love The Alameda Building Dept.

Well, Y'all you're not going to believe this.
Over the weekend I found my old BI on facebook
and sent him a note. He actually called me right
away and we had a nice long talk about my situation.

He totally agreed with me!!!!!!!!!! That the city was
being totally wrong headed about the whole thing and
that he would call the head honcho first thing Monday
morning and help straighten this mess out.

Ya, I can't believe it either, I'm totally shocked. I did always
say he was a good guy.

Just a minute ago I get a call from the building dept. Magically,
EVERYTHING is okay now.
I've got an inspection apt for Tues afternoon for the okay to cover!!!
Now I know I won't get the okay to cover but I'm hoping to get the
majority of the rough inspections signed off.
Then it will be a race to beat the permit deadline.

I'm freaking shocked, but I'm still going to celebrate tonight with some
yummy tequila.....'Hey honey, did you know its 'date night?''

I love, love, love The Alameda Building Dept.

Catch-Up, Ketchup, French-Fry

Hello Dear Readers, (both of you)
It certainly has been a while since I've done any kind of a construction post.
There has been some very exciting developments here that will astonish and
Well, okay, not really......

I think that we are ready for drywall in the downstairs apartment. Yes, that
apartment that I've been working on for what seems like an eternity.

Here are some exciting pics of the downstairs unit ready for drywall (I hope).

The main hallway
 From other side.

The utility room 

 I decided to do a low voltage panel for the entire house also.
you can see it on the left here next to the House sub-panel.

 Fancy new 90min fire door outside.
Fancy 90min fire door inside.
Very crowded in there, better clear it out before the inspection.

Master Bedroom
Master Closet


Dining Room

Dry Wall Blocking Examples

Front Bedroom
Back Bedroom

Yep, Still Purple
And its holding up awesomely.

Metal For Crazy Bike Rack Idea
 Yay! Craigs List! I got all this 1" crew square tubing for less than the scrap
price! Yep, still going to make some kind of crazy bike rack for the house.

Okay, we all caught up....not quite, one more CRAZY post should do it.