For the last part of the four-year tour, let’s look outside, at our first impression. Initially, the neighborhood, lot, and views piqued our curiosity. Enough to look it up online, which only fueled our discussions. If for no other reason, we had to see the inside just to get it off our minds. Clearly that didn’t stop the swirling ideas, instead, we would regret not moving forward. The house had been lived in, but neglected. Many parts hadn’t been updated since the house was built. Some work had been done, but not completed. Landscaping all over grown. The picture of beauty, right? Maybe not, but at least potential.
Before replacing the siding, we decided to take the opportunity to make the house more energy-efficient at the same time. We wrapped the house with insulation, then started with the pretty changes. A mixture of dark gray painted lap siding, warmed up by rusting CorTen vertical siding. Horizontal railings modernize and compliment the boxy structure of the house.
In the back, a large fountain sat centered on a weed filled paver patio. It looks like there was landscaping done before, but had all grown over.
To create a more usable outdoor space, we pulled out the patio and fountain to create a large deck with a more natural looking water feature-a waterfall. Though unconventional, the deck is made from reclaimed structural beams. A DIY natural gas fire pit is a great gathering space for parties and s’mores roasting.
Near the house, there was a small landing area created from rock with several steps leading down to the patio area. It wasn’t ideal and broke up the area without adding function.
We chose to remove the steps, lower the door, and make everything one level. Over time, I’ve slowly added plants, turning the drab landscape as lush a possible. There are areas I’d love to fill in for maximum coverage.
Before, the large space felt very compartmentalized and single use.
Now it’s our private oasis, perfect for relaxing, eating al fresco, and watching the kids play.
A steep hillside quickly goes up from the house level, but the lack of landscaping looked dull and lifeless.
It’s been a long process, but the work has certainly been worth the effort.
That sums up our four year house tour and progress. Hope you’ve enjoyed the before and after comparison and updates. Thanks for the encouraging comments and suggestions!