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All Hands on Deck

By June 14, 2013November 3rd, 2013House


Hi guys! It’s been an exciting but crazy week over here. We are replacing our porches and deck — our dilapidated, rotting, 31 year-old porches and deck. To say it was time would be the understatement of the year. They are not only rotting to the point we can stick our fingers through the wood on the benches, but they are no longer built to current code, so per our approach of addressing needs on a “needs most” basis, they were next in line.


This might just be my favorite shot of the entire remodel so far…

This purchase marks the first (aside from our refrigerator purchase last fall) that you can actually see. While the electrical upgrades have made our lives much easier (and safer), they weren’t much fun to show off because aside from new outlets, the results weren’t all that much to actually look at.


We entertained about 10 quotes for this project from a range of contractors, from large-scale, almost commercial construction to small independent carpenters and remodeling companies. As annoying and somewhat disheartening the process can be, I highly recommend it. We learned so much from each of the contractors, and it gave us a lot more confidence in knowing what we were looking for, and what was within the reach of both our budget and structural possibility. It also taught personality types that we just don’t like to work with. Like the contractor who said we would be “good for his marketing” but quoted us over $5,000 more than any other contractor. Or the guy who was determined to sell us on a certain “not wood” wood product. We also had a contractor suggest something that every other contractor told us would be absolutely nuts.

In the end we ended up with two amazing contractors. Both were exceptionally detail-oriented, treated our goals and home like it was their own and were very thoughtful in explaining all the details, and even suggesting things that might work better. From those two, we chose John Leigers Carpentry and Remodeling LLC and have been so completely happy with the choice.


Even though our new porches/deck are still in progress, it’s plainly clear that our old ones were complete shit, even when they were new. They were very obviously built by someone inexperienced and not well framed or supported beneath. Some of the sizing choices were also a bit weird. Like you could tell by looking at the front porch especially that it not only looked somewhat imbalanced, but didn’t fit the house right. They also were not attached to the ground or house properly — often with just stone bricks under the legs and very cheesy slag bolts.

And let’s not ignore the elephant in the yard, they will NOT be red. Who puts red decks/porches on a red brick house!?


The new construction will fit the home more appropriately and are built using sturdy framing, in-ground cemented legs, and properly attached to the home. John even fixed some of the damage to our brick and some water damage to the wood under some of our door frames. Awesome!


The best part is that the new decks will be built with treated pine frames, and beautiful cedar decking and railing that will NOT be painted but sealed to show off their great grain and colors.


This week Leigers built the front and side porches, and next week he’s tackling the big deck. For the most part, the work this week didn’t affect us all that much, but as we enter and exit through the deck into the kitchen all the time, I anticipate noticing that construction quite a bit more. Nonetheless, we are so ridiculously excited!

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