Wednesday, September 24, 2008

decrepit building of the week

Wow it's been a while -- Family life and busting my hump for the man have meant no time for house stuff the last few months. That's ok though -- after dealing with the house project it was kind of nice to not really think about anything house related for a while. Well not completely -- I always think about other houses. When walking through my neighborhood I often have a few favorites I obsess over, the ones that make me cringe, and the ones somewhere in between. I often say we live in a transitional neighborhood, but I guess sometimes the transition is a little slower than I would like.

And so without further ado, I've decided to start a little something called "decrepit building of the week". I don't plan to actually do this every week nor do I intend to focus on homes in my neighborhood. We'll just see what's decrepit enough to inspire me to blog about it. So let's lay down some groundrules.
  • gotta be decrepit (I think we covered that)
  • gotta have serious potential for a restoration
  • gotta be old (late 19th, early 20th century)
  • gotta be vacant (UPDATE)
I added a fourth condition after letting this one stew for a while.. First, I never considered the ramifications of posting about homes people live in. And while there are examples that fit the bill either way, it just feels downright sleazy. Heck, my house ain't the cream of the crop either. I'm fixing it up as I go, mostly because of budgetary constraints. So I understand and can relate to alot of the homeowners in the neighborhood who through for one reason or another have allowed their home to fall into disrepair. I do not however, have any sympathy for slumlords or owners of derelict, abandoned buildings. I reserve the right to at times rewrite some of my posts -- heck it's my blog. I thought this one in particular is a potential sensitive issue. I may never revisit this topic, but if I do I promise my readers that it will be fair and with minimal "attitude". And so without further ado, my first post:

My first installment fits each of those criteria very nicely in my opinion. It's a quaint victorian cottage with some nice detail. Does anyone know the story on this house? I've heard rumors (to which I have no real proof) that the owner started fixing it up several years ago. Brand new pella windows were installed, brick was repointed, new roof, etc. Allegedly there was a dispute between the owner & contractor. The owner then stopped all improvements and it has since been left to rot. The interior has been completely gutted as well. By gutted I mean there's nothing left -- trim, mantles, doors, floors. Zip. Looking in through the front door and you can see dirt where the basement would be. It's a damn shame.