Sewer lateral complete!

Finally, something really worked out! The last expensive move-in project with a strict timeline that we had hanging over us was the sewer lateral. Our county requires that whenever a property is sold the sewer pipe from the house to the street has to be inspected and pass a pressure test. This is to make sure that we aren’t all leaking poo water into the neighborhood soil, and I guess I understand why that’s a law. They make you put up a deposit of $4500 that’s forfeited if you don’t finish that within six months of closing, so it’s kind of a big deal. The thing is that for almost every single ~90 year old house around here you would expect the pipes to fail to hold pressure. As far as our report said, we didn’t even have a clean-out where they would connect such a test.

When we bought the place the disclosures had a quote for having it done for $7k, and we were told that it was likely we could find someone to do it for less. After all of the other surprises we’ve had, I really assumed that the company had lowballed and was going to flake when they didn’t call me right back when I wanted to get the work done. I did some research and called a couple of the most highly rated companies in town for this kind of stuff, and one came out and gave me a quote for $19k. The reviews for the cheap guys had a couple instances of people saying that they’d been hit with delays and extra charges of thousands of dollars, and so I was afraid I was looking at a >$12k headache from the cheap guys or a $19k super-premium treatment from the other guys. Either way, I as already worried we’d be on a payment plan.

Today we got the happy ending!

I got a call yesterday that they discovered that at some point in the not so distant past somebody had already replaced the 90 year old pipes with modern stuff, they just did it unpermitted, and left the clean-out in a really inconvenient spot under the stairs. All they had to do was install a real clean-out, then get it inspected and permitted properly. And it was going to cost less than the quote! Today that actually happened, and we can put this behind us. After we get the check back from the city this won’t have eaten into our budget for other stuff, which is very cool.

Curtains up!

It’s been a little while, and we’ve been busy on some things other than the house (plus I had issues with the blog). We hosted Christmas dinner, helped Kaitlyn’s dad move his shop, and had some much needed down time. Kaitlyn seems to be getting some energy back now in her second trimester, so this weekend we located the curtain rods and got these up in our room.

I wish that I could say that this took less than four hours! Anyway, I’m glad we got it done, the bedroom feels much more cozy now.

Less happy news, it’s been three months since the bathroom was finished and the grout is already cracking.

We haven’t decided exactly what we’re going to do about it, but it seems that the contractor that did the work is out of business. Their contractor’s license is canceled, and their website is gone. We may still have some recourse, and the floor may not be beyond repair… but this isn’t good.

Today we are having our sewer lateral updated, so hopefully I’ll have good news on that soon.

Here’s Penny!

Also, this is the salamander who lives under our compost bin: