Thursday 1 December 2011

Hey big spender

Seb has submitted our plans to the might of the council for approval.  The presence of a planning notice on our front gate post rather wrong-footed us, as we hadn’t told the neighbours to expect it.  One or two fairly hasty visits to slightly worried looking neighbours later and all seems smoothed over (although comments are still open so who knows what will come).  And who can blame them, the new people in the village suddenly submitting a planning application, which could have been anything from adding an unsightly extension to knocking it all down and starting again.

In fact though, we’re making such minor changes to the house’s appearance that the only reason we need to get planning permission is because the insulation we are adding will increase the apparent size of the house by approx 10cm on three walls, which means that on balance the council would like our planning fees.

As that is what we have decided, despite my imagining all summer a completely different approach, Seb has persuaded us (didn’t really take much persuading, we just decided to trust him) to approach insulation from the outside.  So the plan is to re-roof the house and put Tri-Iso quilting down when we do so (I am still slightly unsure of this approach, but Seb seems convinced).  And at the same time put external cladding with approx 10cm of Celotex on the outside.

So we get a shiny new exterior, rerendered and redecorated and a warmer house, but it means that when it comes to prepping the rooms inside for redecoration it’s all down to me, whereas previously I’d imagined internal insulation and brand new plaster for painting.

And it’s a lot more expensive, although this is more to do with scope than anything else.  Before we moved in I’d envisaged about £25k to refurbish and reinsulate the top floor and redo the boiler.  Now we’re looking at three times that (if not more) because we’re going to do the whole house instead and do some electrical rewiring at the same time.  We’re in the lucky position that we can afford to do this, but it fair brings a tear to my eye, a dent in ambitious holiday plans, and probably puts off retirement a bit too.

If all goes smoothly, work starts in the New Year, so we’ll get three months of disruption, leaving me about six weeks to tidy everything up before the baby comes along.  Eeep.

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