B’s New House: What’s On the To-Do List First?

Last week I showed you what our new house looked like the day we fell in love with it. It’s only been about a  month since it looked exactly like those photos, but already it’s so different!

Then and NowBridget's new house- before

For starters, the old homeowners have moved out. And just like any house once it’s cleared out and all of the frames are off the walls, it doesn’t look as polished as it did when it was furnished. The house is now empty and the wear and tear of living in it really shows when you can see every nook and cranny of the space.

The front door- beforeBut that’s to be expected and totally okay. We have quite a bit of work planned before we officially move in anyways. Now it’s time to start moving full steam ahead to our “Pre Move In To-Do List” so we can get the dust settled (literally) right in time to start focusing on relaxing and preparing for Baby Mac’s arrival.

Our Pre Move In To-Do List

Re-stain the Hardwood Floors

Casey's floors before they were restainedCasey's floors after the stainingWe are so lucky to be moving into a place that has original hardwood floors that are in great shape. However, we aren’t in love with the color and realize if we don’t change it now we probably will never want to do it. Casey hired someone to change the colors of her floors before she moved in and she still says that was one of her best decisions in her home. I’m officially sold! Before we move in any furniture, we’re going to hire someone to tackle this project.

New TrimTo-do project: update the trim

There is white trim throughout the house right now, but it is pretty old and has seen better days. Our plan is to replace the trim right away with a thicker option because we think it’ll make a significant impact right from the start. There’s also no traditional casing around the windows and doors so we have to demo all of the frames in order to eventually add the casing/trim. And did I mention the walls are all plaster instead of drywall? Oh boy!

New Doors and HardwareTo-do project: Update doors and hardware

The doors on the first floor are not white, even though the trim is, so we want to get those changed right away. Plus the doors are extremely old and you can see the layers of paint on them. We are going to replace them with new white doors and black hardware. You guys know how much I love black hardware, I’m excited to think it’s going to be a part of our home!

Paint… EverywhereTo-do project: paint, paint, paint

We plan on adding a fresh coat of paint on the ceilings, trim, and all of the walls before we move in. If the place is already a huge mess, at least we can get this messy job out of the way immediately. I do have to say though, I’m a bit nervous about choosing the right colors, especially having to do so before seeing the furniture inside.

Add Can LightsTo-do project: install can lights

We waited over a year to add can lights into our first house and when we finally splurged, we couldn’t believe we lived so long in the dark. We’ve learned our lesson this time around and hope to check this off of our list right away.

Remodel the MudroomTo-do project: update the mudroom

To-do project: renovate the mud roomI will have to devote a whole post about this room soon because I have big plans for this space! We never had anything like this in our old house, so I’m excited to make the most of this space right from the start. It’s filled with exposed brick and such character, I can’t wait to get to work!

Change The OutletsTo-do project: update outlets

All of the outlets on the first floor are almond color. I plan on changing them all to white outlets to match the new trim. I’m thinking of adding some “smart” technology features on some of them as well.

Install the NestTo-do project: Install the Nest

Matt and I want to try to make this house “smarter” when it comes to technology. Updating the old school thermostat right away is our first step in doing so. We both loved our Nest at the old house and loved how easy it was to install, so we want to start with a Nest right away in this house.

Other Odds & Ends

  • Powerwash the front porch, driveway
  • Rip out all old/overgrown landscaping, clean up what’s left
  • Take down large decorative pieces hanging on the home’s siding
  • Rent a professional edger and edge the overgrown grass, give the lawn a little TLC
  • Paint the front door… maybe? hopefully?

Press Pause, Move-In & Relax until after Baby MacBridget and Matt ready to tackle the new house projects

To say I’m stressed to get all of this done in a timely matter is an understatement. We’re tackling the demo of the trim now, but then we’re handing off a lot of these projects to the pros because we just don’t have time to work on the house, work our full-time jobs, run the blog, and get done in a reasonable time (aka before I’m too big to tackle serious DIYs).

One Step At a Time

Hiring and getting all of the pros on a schedule that works for everyone has been tough, but I’m trying my best so that these projects will run smoothly and efficiently. I will keep you guys updated on the progress, but wanted to get you up to speed about what will be happening around the house over the next few weeks.

It’s going to be CRAZY busy but hopefully, when the dust settles we can rest, relax, and prepare for Baby Mac. Then next year we can start on Phase 2 (!) but let’s not jump the gun just yet. Baby steps, right?!



The Year of Casey

Hey there!

I’m Casey Finn, the voice behind The DIY Playbook. I’m a Chicago gal teaching you how to design, DIY, and maintain your home…by yourself! Learn more about me right here.

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