What’s the Deal?

Whether it’s family, friends, or readers, the most often asked question about our house is related to the most crazy feature: the pool house.  It’s a large room with a deep indoor pool.  Here’s the view from the house when we moved in:

New-House-Pool-Room April 13 2012

And looking back from the fountain seen above:


Clearly, the main feature and purpose of this room is the pool.  But, if you look at the above photos, you’ll see a recessed hot tub and a raised wet bar area.  When we bought the place, the pool hadn’t functioned in several years.  In the 10 or so years the previous owner had been here, the hot tub had never worked.  Instead, the pool had very disgusting water lingering and festering.  We sucked out the remaining water and ripped out the sun bleached and damaged pool liner.


Before we could landscape and build our single level deck, we had to knock out the platform:


To be able to cut out the concrete


and lower the door and window:


One thing always seems to lead to another.  Or requires something to be done before the next can happen.  All of that to say the pool house isn’t looking nice these days.  See what I mean?


Essentially, we use the space as our personal warehouse.  Those stacks are rigid insulation that we’re using to wrap the house.  On the floor we’ve got siding and exterior trim.  You can see the saw horses where I prepaint the trim white.


When we replaced the cedar shake roof, the plastic wrap around the skylights came loose.  So that dangles down in a really graceful way.  Ha.


As stunning as it currently is, this isn’t our permanent plan for this space.  Before we can get to any of the pretty parts, we have to remove the plastic ceiling panels and the dark stained siding.  Then, we’ll wrap everything in two layers of the rigid insulation panels to hold in heat during the winter.

Here’s what we’ve discussed for the finishes in the room.  On the ceiling, we want to use tongue and groove wood.  Whether we leave it natural, stain, or paint it is still up in the air.  For the walls, we’re leaning toward the same lap siding, but painting it a lighter neutral.  A section of the back wall is two feet deeper than the rest.  We’ve thrown out the idea of creating a rust steel accent wall there, to help tie the exterior in.  Those giant beams will get a good sanding and clear coat.  I really like the original lights, so those will stay.


In place of the recessed hot tub, we’ll cover the hole, tile over it, and put in a stand alone tub.  They’re so much more efficient and accessing the plumbing is a necessity.


I mentioned tile, and we’re really hoping to use a natural material.  Perhaps the same slate we used in the master bathroom because we love it so much.  It’s not slippery or slick, and looks amazing.  Most of the doors and windows are fogged up, which means the seals are broken and need replacing.


Over in this corner, we’ll add a kick ass kitchenette.


Once we remodel the kitchen, the sink and some of the granite will get reused in here.  We thought the old range would live in here, too.  Until fate changed that plan.  Almost two years ago, we found a barely used 48 inch range on Craigslist for a song.  Initially, we thought we’d use it in the kitchen, but decided we’d rather have double wall ovens and a cooktop.  So, the steal of a deal range will allow us to bake out here in the summer, without heating up the house in the process.


As for the pool itself, we do plan to fix it.  It might need some new plumbing work, and certainly needs a new liner.  Most of these plans aren’t a priority.  We’ll have to change out the doors and windows soon-ish.  Some kitchen work will probably happen when we work on the main kitchen.  Other than that, we’ll just have to see when things happen.  For now, it’s an extremely convenient place to store everything we need for larger projects.

16 thoughts on “What’s the Deal?

  1. Haha! If you give a mouse a cookie, right? I’m excited to see progress on this room. Maybe it’s just me but I like the current dark siding!

    1. Joyce, that’s exactly what it is. Story of a house renovation, I guess. If the dark siding wasn’t water damaged and dripped all over, I’d like it, too. To quote Clueless, it’s a full on Monet, nice from afar, big old mess up close. 🙂


    1. Hi Adrienne!

      We’ve talked about different options, but there’s really nothing we’d need that much space for. Seriously, the pool is the only logical use for this room.


  2. Gah I was so excited I thought you were finally tackling this! I know a pretty kitchen would be nice but a pool and hot tub that you can use year round?? So fun. I am really excited to see you guys take this on 🙂

    1. Hello Catherine!

      Sorry to disappoint! Before we can work on the room we have to rebuild the deck out front, replace windows and the siding on the exterior. Then we’ll wrap the inside walls and ceiling with insulation and only then can we get to the pretty stuff like walls, ceiling, and floors. Of course that’s the simplified version of the work list, too. Eventually, it’ll look nice and function. 🙂


  3. Wow!!! You guys accomplish such major stuff! I am proud that I got a load of laundry done over the weekend (and, no, I haven’t actually folded said load).
    Do you have a timeline for all these projects? Like, kitchen 2014, pool 2015….?

    1. Hey Liz!

      Well, I usually get backed up on laundry, so you’re ahead of me there. 🙂 Um, we don’t really have a timeline, per se. It’s all a matter of how quickly we get other project done. Some are quicker, and others have so many steps or are dependent on something else that it drags on. I will say this, after finishing up the front windows and siding (on the house, the pool house has to wait a while because we have to get the deck done first) the kitchen is the next big project.

      Once we start on the windows and siding of the pool house, I think we’ll want to get it looking pretty. So maybe two years? Depends on weather and how fast we can rebuild a large deck.


  4. Why was it necessary to remove the platform and lower the door and window? Couldn’t the kitchen still be placed there without doing all of that work?

    1. Hi Jessie!

      Good questions! It wasn’t necessary if we didn’t mind having the platform inside and another outside. We didn’t like having confined spaces on either side of the door. Here’s a post that shows the outside area before we lowered it: https://ourhumbleabodeblog.com/2012/06/19/timber/ Without getting super wordy, here’s the story.

      There were a few steps, then a rock patio platform to get to the door. It was almost level with the base of the kitchen window, and very awkward. We wanted to keep everything on one level, allowing the most usable space both in the pool house kitchenette area and what is now the back deck. This allows a seamless deck and a much more open (rather than three foot wide steps) to the area from the pool.

      Short story, we certainly could have left everything alone, but didn’t like the division of spaces and how closed off each felt. Let me know if you still have questions! It was a strange set up and it hasn’t been that way in so long it’s easy to forget.


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