COVID-19 Stops Work?

These really are unprecedented times. COVID-19 stops work and play for that matter. No one could have predicted this total change, hopefully temporary, in the way we live. As developers, we not only have a duty to look after ourselves and family but also those involved in our current developments.

Personal well-being is paramount but then comes economic well-being and the ability to survive through these troubled times.

Building site
https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/coronavirus-we-ll-keep-building-until-it-s-banned-say-industry-chiefs-rz7c30xh9

Naturally, all of our contractors are self-employed and if they stop work they get nothing. Ah-ha, I hear some of you say. Boris et al have promised to pay 80% of their declared earnings averaged over the past 3 years up to a maximum of £2,500 per month.

The major problem with this is the phrase “declared earnings”. Any good accountant would be keeping this figure to a minimum to keep tax payment down and then only if they are fully aware of their client’s true earnings. I feel that the chances of most of these people claiming anywhere near the proposed figure are zero.

And so here is the crunch. I have 2 trades working at Sackville Street at the moment, a decorator and a kitchen/bathroom/door fitter. Both of them have asked to continue working because they need to earn money. And they came up with their own solution. Rather than shutting the site down, they would only work 50% of the time i.e. only one person in the house on any one day and that includes me as the developer.

painter in mask

Rules would have to be followed. Scrupulous hygiene with regards to hands, at the first sign of symptoms, work stops immediately etc.

Seems reasonable. At least the work continues albeit at half pace. What difference does this make? – it cannot go on the market at the moment as there are no buyers.

So there we go. With a “one person at any one time” rule, I am locked out of my own development for at least the next 3 weeks!

What are your feelings on this matter? Comment below.

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It’s all Grey & White

White walls, Grey woodwork

Grey & White appears to be on-trend for decorating these days. the challenge we have is – which way round? White walls and grey woodwork or grey walls and white woodwork.

Let’s have a vote. BTW the floors will be Ash as per the last image

White walls grey woodwork
White walls, eggshell grey woodwork
Grey walls, eggshell white woodwork
Ash flooring
Ash flooring in a living room

Your views would be most welcome. Decorating at Sackville Street starts later this week!

Sackville St. – Let the Plastering Commence

Bedroom 1

The next few photographs show the stages achieved so far at our current project. The was taken after the carpet and fitted wardrobes had already been removed. The second was taken after hours of steamy wallpaper stripping which included the nicotine being melted from the ceiling into one’s hair! Lastly, plastering, it looks like we are finally getting somewhere. Not long for the paint

Bedroom 1
Bedroom 1 – First fix electrics
Bedroom 1
Bedroom 1 – Wallpaper stripped. Boarded ceiling
Bedroom 1 - Plastering
Lovely new plaster!

A couple of views taken from the other end of the bedroom before plastering started showing the transformation from one large room to having the third bedroom reinstated.

Bedroom 1
Bedroom 1 with new radiators
Bedroom 3
The creation of bedroom 3/nursery/study

Sackville Street Renovation

Sackville Street

We bought this property at auction towards the end of last year. Having stood empty for several months this Edwardian end of terrace house was in need of a lot of TLC and renovation to bring it back to its former glory. Sackville Street is in the boot and shoe town of Raunds and housed one of the many factories before they all closed in the 1980s. The new house in the left of the picture was built, together with 20 others, on the site of one of those factories.

Sackville Street
2 Sackville Street, Raunds

Over the coming weeks, we will post the usual before, during and after shots. Be aware there is a lot of work to be done!

  1. New central heating
  2. Full re-wire
  3. Damp course
  4. Strip of all wall-paper and other coverings
  5. Full plaster/skim
  6. New kitchen
  7. New bathroom
  8. Reinstate 3rd bedroom
  9. New flooring throughout
  10. Revamp of garden including removal of 2 trees
  11. etc etc etc!
Lounge
Check out that ceiling
Kitchen diner
Bathroom
Bathroom – No bath!
Bedroom
Bedroom during rewire

The Attack of the Lellandii

Lellandii, the gardener’s favourite / most hated hedging shrub. This is what happens if you plant it and then just let it go, in other words The Attack of the Lellandii. Our latest project at Sackville Street, Raunds had a neglected external space from the dilapidated fences, to the overgrown beds and the huge shrubs at the end threatening the original Victorian factory wall.

Leylandii
The garden at the end was dead 6ft back from the fence

The neighbour at the end of the garden was “delighted” when I told her that I was going to have these two beasts removed (at a considerable cost I may add). After all these years she would have daylight in the house after 1 pm!

All I needed from her was access from the road to the end of her garden and somewhere to put the shredder and of course the use of her garden for a couple of days. There is no access through the project apart from via the house.

No more Leylandii
Gone!!