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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
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    4

    Default 1879 queen anne victorian. Fun house floors.

    Hello this is my first post on here. Ive owned the queen Anne for about 6 years now. So I decided the carpeting is beyond repair. We yanked it up to find Heart pine 3 1/2" boards. Of course condition is terrible for a 133 year old house. How ever we are alarmed every room has a 2 1/2 - 4 5/8 bow in the flooring. I have played with house jacks with no real help. This is a 2800 sq ft house is there any cheap solution? Contractors came and told us 15- 20 thousand just for sub floors.the bid was figured for trim and quarter round removal,removal of all sub-floor , sistering of every joist every 32 inches. install new 3/4 in plywood and existing trim work. This to me seems as replacing a car for a flat tire. Also the house is located near the city of Pittsburgh and well I paid 43700. cash 1/2 price deal with a foreclosing bank.Should I dump this kind of money in the house? were in a old town square area, park side on a brick street. However the town is claimed distressed. The real-estate broker I used did say if it were 2 miles from here it would be worth 170k. Just sucks thinking about money but the bid did seem high.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Houston Texas
    Posts
    2,371

    Default Re: 1879 queen anne victorian. Fun house floors.

    This type of repair is typical to owning a historic / older home. The longer you live there the more times this same dilemma will appear. Normally folks who buy such houses spend the money as a labor of love. If you bought this house as a money making investment, it probably was not a great idea. It was low priced and the bank dumped the property for a reason.

    Most older homes were built with undersized lumber for today's standards for deflection. The re-framing for stiffness, tiling and sagging is normal. Sistering should be full span only and every joist.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: 1879 queen anne victorian. Fun house floors.

    well love is what bought the house. After spending child hood in a tiny 50s sears kit house the scope of detail is incredible. How ever me and my wife are respectably 30/27 and need the house to be child friendly asap. I manage rentals student housing and vacation property. I'm expecting 50k to make her cozy. The plumbing electrical furnace roofs n bath were all new in 2007 when I got her. Only reason I bought in fact. What they did was Pyle shingals and furring strips under luan. then the carpet. My idea is to cut down 2x4s matching the slope to existing sub floors and lay new 3/4 plywood down.using deck screws in the old joists. First floor only then house jack what i can to stabilize the new weight. The basement is exactly 49in high in one half and a 24in crawlspace for the rest so not usable anyway. The second floor is surprisingly crappy but not that bad simple carpet will do. The third floor serves as my office and well the original 30s desk has been cut to match the floor and well works fine. But what were shooting for is laminate flooring in the commen rooms of the house. Im at 1500.00 for the wood and another 3500.00 for the "click-click" flooring. The second floor im at 2400.00 for good quality carpet. The only regret is the footage! The dinning room is 22x18 and they ran the stringers way way too long. And as you said the lumber is not lumber. Our load bearer in the basement is just a 100ft pine branches n all . Does this make sense or should I do it correct then wait a few years to do proper floor for what the house is. hate to blow our savings for a perfect house located in down town Beruit,

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: 1879 queen anne victorian. Fun house floors.

    Oh before I forget I did call "Danny" our trusted contractor Ive employed over the last 8 years on our rentals. The average room is 16x18 then the master over the dining room is 22x18. He laughed and asked 1. where can I buy a 22 ft 2x6 2. How in the hell can I get it up the stair case. For a full span and the weight of sistering in each will cause more problems. Due to what he says the house was stick built and every joist is running non correctly. most likely there was a local sawmill that the builders used. The exterior walls we found were cut from one tree. one piece studs foundation to roof. is this normal for 1800s construction?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Southern Ontario Canada
    Posts
    38

    Default Re: 1879 queen anne victorian. Fun house floors.

    In my experience nothing is normal when looking at century old houses. Very little in the way of building codes then.

    I know this is what you have decided on but then there is the old adage " Don't throw good money after bad ". Houston Remodeled is so correct when he says these rebuilds of 133 year old houses are a labor of love. The love part passes quickly when we start sinking hard earned dollars into these projects and can't see results because its hidden below flooring and in walls.

    Experience is a lifetime of mistakes, wisdom is not repeating them.

    Caulk this up to experience, I would get the place to a point where it can be sold and then move onto a more manageable project.

    There was probably a good reason you grew up in a modest home, it was most likely what was within your folks budget. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that.

    Rent the 80's movie The Money Pit.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: 1879 queen anne victorian. Fun house floors.

    Yea think we will just shim up the first floor enough to lay a good quality laminate. and run carpet though-out. Not knocking the lil sears house. They bought it for the acreage. However when you have to shove grandma beside the stove for holiday gatherings it becomes a lil tight. We are pretty set on dropping dead in this place. The morgage is most likely the lowest in the country for a starter home @ 379.00 Does anyone have ideas on what would be a quality laminate? The big box stores have Shaw for roughly 2.95 sq foot with a 7 year warranty. Soild well I cant find anything "vintage" looking that will fit. You just cant fit modern cherry in with a 1800s house. My wife laid samples out and all looked cheesy. Thanks for the advise "the money pit" so fitting! The two week rule just don't happen. 5 years and at last were almost done except the kitchen and well thats going to be hell. 4 walls 1 stair case 4 door ways and 2 80 in windows.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Houston Texas
    Posts
    2,371

    Default Re: 1879 queen anne victorian. Fun house floors.

    Remove some siding and slide the joists in from the outside ?

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