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DIY - or do and die?

It’s been an interesting December, relocating to the Wilderness in the Eastern Cape to a home that we were renovating, to a home that should have been ready to move into.

Turns out my husband and I have drastically different versions of “ready to move into.” He had been in the property for 2 months renovating it and while the path to completion was fraught with numerous curve balls, he assured me it was good enough to us to move into and complete over time.

Arriving from Joburg with my Joburg attitude firmly intact had me in tears and him in shock. The house was not by any stretch of anyone’s imagination “ready to move into.”

Thankfully, my dear sister and her family were with us for the holidays and her building expertise had us thinking creatively of how to get things done. No mean feat given that any form of building or construction grinds to a screeching halt over December in South Africa.

The major issue was to sort out the wooden floors which needed to be sanded and varnished before anything else could happen. The house is double storey and there is a LOT of floor! Even so, our children were keen to get involved and make it happen so we all jumped in against the backdrop of a sweltering December day.

We got to work sanding and more sanding. Sweeping and cleaning with turpentine. It was going swimmingly well until it came time to varnish. By now, spirits were running low. Mistakes were made with the varnishing in the main living area. The entire mission had to be aborted until another date.

Once we worked up the courage to give it another go, we realised that the floors had to be sanded back down to raw and we had to redo everything.

Days of wasted holidays had us all feel grumpy and upset.

But here’s the cold hard truth:

  • Get someone who knows what they are doing to get the job done.

Don’t get me wrong, I am all for learning new skills. Under the careful guidance of a mentor, someone who has done it before, someone who can make the path to new easier to navigate.

Of course, by the time we had redone the floors, we were reluctant experts. The floors, magnificent.

Will I be varnishing floors again? Not a chance.'

After all, I am all about property investing, not property development!






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