Today was mostly spent working on sealing the new floors. This is a very big step as it is the last thing we are going to do to remove the nasty smell in the house. I can't even begin to paint an image of how bad this house wreaked, and how nasty it was in general. It was no wonder the sellers were willing to take a price that was basically equal to the price of the land, excluding the house.This house is only 6 years old. When we bought it you wouldn't know it. The previous tenants, we will call them tenants for now, managed almost destroy it.
Let me paint a picture: Imagine seeing house pictures online that a realtor posted, and this house had a great layout, but even the "selling" pictures showed what amounted to hoarders living there. Then, because we are completely insane people, we decide to look at the land and house anyway. When we (us and the realtor) got to the house and walked inside, the smell was so bad that we almost lost our lunches...all of us. It was absolutely putrid. Furthermore, my allergies started acting up, indicating there were obviously cats in the house. It was also obvious that more animals had to be in that house because of all of the bodily waste smells, and the massive door and floor-board scratches that were present. I am guessing big dogs were locked in one of the bedrooms, likely for days on end. Needless to say we determined that we were not going to pay for the house. We then put together a price based on the land and the other features present, and made the offer. Low and behold, they took it! Great, now what do we do with this nasty house, which, by the way, has an awesome floor plan? Well, after lots of consideration, we decide to see if it was salvageable. It is only 6 years old, so possibly the "guts" of the house were still OK. Lets get our good friend Mr. House Inspector out there to give his thoughts.
Mr. house inspector did find a laundry list of items...well duh...but one thing in particular that concerned us was the mold. Yes, there was mold. How the heck does one get a mold problem in a 6 year old house. Well...rednecks as they were/are, I guess nothing should surprise us. After consulting with our agent, we agreed that we could probably take care of the mold problem ourselves. It was only a little spot on a ceiling, surely we can whip that out. Long story short, a few weeks later (and after lots of sabotage attempts by the current owner...I will elaborate in another post), we were the proud new owners of a POS house with a ton of potential. Time to get to work!
First things first...get that nasty carpet out! Great, the house is better already, but now the yard also stinks. How to get rid of that? Well...see the post about Sheriff visit #1. It didn't get rid of all of it, but I got a good portion of it taken care of!
Second: 15 gallons of Odoban. Yea...15 gallons. This was just sprayed everywhere in the house and on the walls with a pump-up weed sprayer.
Third: Mold. Let's cut it out of the ceiling. OK, done, but wait, it goes on further...hmmmm...maybe a little further...darn...all the way to the floor...now it spreads...holy crap...the entire wall is gone, and we are moving into the next bedroom! Thankfully it stopped there and it wasn't bad enough to have to replace any wood, just clean it up. But now we are cleaning up a truck load of Sheetrock, insulation, bull-nose cornering, etc. This is about the time my step-dad stepped up. His OCD comes in really handy when doing things like trying to make a wall so it looks like it has been there forever. It's difficult to make it perfect, but it is really darn close.
Fourth: Seal the floors. 20 gallons of water protector and sealant. Smell again makes huge leaps out of the house...but still there.
Fifth: Linoleum goes out. This should have been planned with the carpet, but we though "oh...we will just put the new floors on top...no need to rip it out". WRONG! The laminate was contributing largely to the smell. Out it goes! Now we have completely bare floors in the entire house, except for the sealant. (Side note...the animal waste was so bad in one room that we had to quadruple up on the sealant, and then later put a very thick layer of kills down prior to the carpet being installed).
Now that we have all of the mold gone, and the biggest majority of the smell, time to start putting things back together. My step-dad did a great job with all of the patchwork through the entire house (not just the rebuilding of the whole walls), we had new carpet installed in all of the bedrooms, and this last weekend I did the installation of all of the laminate floors. I am proud to say that I think we have conquered the smell! I am putting caulking around the entire perimeter of the laminate for two reasons: 1) to make sure the stink stays under the floor, and 2, to make sure any spilled water or anything else does not get under the floor. Hence the reason we are "almost" done still.
Just for fun, below are some pictures of the before, and one during, just to show off the amazing cleaning job my wife and my mom did on the bathrooms. That job in-and-of itself was an entire weekend just for bathtubs and showers!