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A Historic Reno in Elizabeth

A Historic Reno in Elizabeth
January 11, 2018 108.greg1971

It was love at first sight standing there in the Elizabeth neighborhood.

At almost 100 years old, the house was big and beautiful and packed with personality. I knew she was meant for us.

It’s been a year since I posted about her. She was our new project. I had high hopes for the historic home renovation. Well, here it is a year later and we are FINALLY ready to begin. No, really, we are! And I promise to share our adventures along the way.

So I guess lesson #1 would be that planning always takes longer than you think. It’s ok. Life happens and honestly you want to do as much thinking, planning, re-tooling, and talking as possible before getting started. Think about it. If you want to get someone’s opinion don’t wait until demo has started or the new cabinets are going in!

Let me tell you a little more about her. The house we purchased in October 2016 is on the County historic registry known as the Jennie Alexander House. It was actually the first duplex built in Charlotte in 1922. It was designed by James Mackson McMichael. We are the 5th owner. She has been loved and lived in and well used. Though she has seen a lot of life, she is still graceful and lovely. We just need to clean her up a bit and give her a new purpose.

The house still has 2 addresses but the previous owner opened up passages between the 2 sides to create a single family home. The problem is the kitchen and laundry areas are still sized for a duplex. Fixing that is priority number 1. We also are expanding the bathroom and master closet for the downstairs master.

It’s a big project so we’re going to need patience and some additional help. We have chosen Montgomery Hobson builders formerly Segue to head our project. Michael Standley of Liquid design is our architect. We are using Lee Tripi as our kitchen designer.

It’s new for me to use such an arsenal of pros. Enter lesson #2. I have learned through experience that the more planners and pros on your side from the beginning the better. This is very important and another post for a later time.

So as we welcome 2018, we are just about to get started. I will keep you all posted and share my journey. Like my posts about my last renovation, I like to share and hopefully benefit from my experiences: the good, the bad, and the ugly. This time, we’ll be living in the house during the renovations. I would love to hear any questions you have as we go. Feel free to share your input if any of you have been through this before. I’ve learned that knowing what to do is as valuable as knowing what not to do, so don’t hold back. Wish us luck!