This blog will follow the ultimate in home improvement: demolish and rebuild!
This is our starting point: a 1930s bungalow. While not a bad house; it is too small for us with three teenage children so what should we do? A full storey extension versus complete rebuild - ultimately the stronger eco-credentials and more certain finances of a new-build helped to guide our choice.
For a number of years we've been trying to find the right route for us to build an eco-friendly, low energy home. We tried various architects and building companies and have eventually settled with a German prefabricated build. The new house will be nearly to passivhaus standards (but not quite due to budget constraints). In any case, the house will be heavily insulated and airtight.
As a family, we have not built a house before so everything is new and exciting but the risk of making a mess of things is quite high!
This blog aims to outline the day to day steps involved in our build.
Monday, 31 May 2010
The calm before the storm!
In Germany today isn't a bank holiday so when Ebi, the project manager, arrived from Germany after an 11 hour drive, he got straight to work! He started laying the bitumen based dpm (damp proof membrane) on the floorslab. After this is cut to size, needs to be set in place.
With a stroke of luck, the four workmen from the company arrive from Germany in a brand new shiny van!
They very quickly lend Ebi a hand. They light the flame thrower and heat the bitumen on the underside of the dpm product so that it melts and binds to the concrete.
The position of the walls is marked with chalk lines on the floorslab.
A quick check of the plans.
The levels are measured and small pads are put in place every foot or so to compensate for the (very) slight differences in the floorslab levels. Meanwhile the workmen are surviving only on coffee!
The floorslab is ready, totally unsuspecting for what will happen tomorrow!
Just when the workmen have finished and are getting ready for a good meal, Brian and Malcolm arrive to check out where they will put their camera to film the whole proceedings.
The heras fencing is extended and cones are placed on either side of the road. The safety sign goes up so it is now a hard hat and hi-vis jacket area! The van is left in front to make sure that no one else will park there.
It's just so exciting now, I don't think any of us will sleep tonight!