Home>Discussions>PLUMBING>Plse help a clueless gal re: CAST IRON WASTE PIPES
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Re: Plse help a clueless gal re: CAST IRON WASTE PIPES

Hi - did you buy the house? I bought my first house a few months ago - a 90-year old home I bought with my emotions. I actually teared up when I was in it. The house inspector, who was doing his second inspection for me, said, "so, you didn't buy the 60 year old house, so now you are looking at a 90-year old house???!".

I did get a bit of a break on the price because of what needed to be done. And one of those things was the electrical - same scenario as you, plus evidence of knob-and tube wiring, plus I just didn't like the looks of what was in the basement: it looked like the previous owner had been a DIYer. I thought it looked scary. So I asked around, got the name of a great electrician from my realtor. He looked at the electrical before I bought it, commented, and even gave me a quote on the work to be done.

I had the whole thing rewired. I guess it wasn't always easy running the wires (despite the fact that there is zero insulation in this northern house), but I didn't mind if he cut holes where he needed to because I was going to refinish and repaint - the safety of the wiring was the main concern, and he was really careful. It was also a great time to add some outlets since they were in short supply in the bedrooms and kitchen. He patched and mudded his holes, but left the refinishing to me to save money.

So now everything live is new wiring, and the old junk was ripped out of the basement. I think I have to go up to the attic sometime to pull out the old wires that are up there. I left some of the old knobs in the basement floor joists just as a nod to the age of the house.

My thoughts were this: first of all, it is good for my own peace of mind. It is now safer. I can sleep at night (he also hard-wired smoke alarms now that I think of it).

Also, while it doesn't increase the value of the house, I believe, or at least hope, that it contributes to the saleability of the house since some people would simply be frightened off completely by old wiring and the prospect of the hassle of getting the work done. I am following the philosophy that the first thing you have to take care of in your house is the structure and the function, and the decoration comes after that.

And my third thought about it was and is, that when taking on an old house, or actually any house, it is such a big and permanent object on the earth, you become a steward of it, that someday it will be somebody elses home, and it should be maintained. Also, while this was my first solo purchase of a home, I used to be married, and I remember all too well the nightmare of trying to get a ton of upgrades done to get the house ready to go on the market in a short period of time while the market was falling. I vowed, never again. That I would keep my house up and in saleable condition at all times, to the extent possible and reasonable.

I hope things have gone well for you with this purchase. Hopefully you listened to your gut as well as your heart.



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