Renovating our Townhouse in Rangsit-Pathum

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Renovating our Townhouse in Rangsit-Pathum

Postby schuimpge » Mon Dec 17, 2012 10:00 am

Hello all,

Decided to start putting up the story of our house-renovation. It was done Jan-Jun 2010.
Initially thought of putting different stories up in various forums like Electric, Kitchen, Garden etc, but it's easier for me to keep it all together in one story.

A bit of background of it first.

When I came to Thailand permanently, we rented an apartment in Sukhumvit first. A new job and setting up an office made us decide to move out of Bangkok to the sub's and we settled in Nantana, a 15 year old development from Property Perfect. First house was a rented 2 story townhouse, corner unit but after some looking around, we found a far cheaper and bigger corner-house in the middle of the village.
With some tax-benefits about to expire, the owner asked us if we'd be interested to buy the house. Easy choice, as we already knew what we'd buy and with a reasonable price and conditions, we made the move and bought it.
The house was pretty much in original state, it's a split-level house with lowest area being the kitchen and toilet, then 3 steps up to the living and main entrance, stairs to the open-plan 'study', then up half a stairs to the master bedroom and shower/toilet and the last half stairs up to two smaller bedrooms.
House is your normal concrete pillars and beams with walls of rendered brick walls. It's granite floors in Kitchen and Living, wood floors Study and Master, wooden stairs and hallways and tiles up in the 2 smaller bedrooms.
Electrical installation is your typical 'horror story' of spaghetti cabling installed with to much Sang Som.

Many plans and low budget funds, we started renovation December 2009 just around Xmas. We where fortunate to have a contractor that has done a lot of work for my company and as such told us he would do the renovation at only the cost of materials and labor he'd pay for to help him. He's a hardworking and very nice guy and he and his wife are currently helping me with advice and delivering all materials I need to do the next renovation all by myself.

Anyhow, our goals for the renovation where as follows:
1. Remove and reinstall proper and safe electric wiring system, all in pvc and inside the walls.
2. Extend the backside of the ground-floor and build a proper kitchen and laundry room in there. (it used to be open, washing/cooking space)
3. Expand Master-bedroom onto the balcony. Remove the wall and new wall on the Balcony.
4. Repaint the whole house.
5. Cover the terrace in front of the house.

Quite ambitious goals, but we are very happy with the results. It's been a long and slow process, but our contractor stuck to his commitment and we are very proud of our little 'palace'.
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Re: Renovating our Townhouse in Rangsit-Pathum

Postby schuimpge » Mon Dec 17, 2012 10:21 am

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Our house before the renovation started

The year before, we had our roof insulated with PU-Foam. You can see the yellow color under the balcony roof.
The house on the left is the unit I am now renovating. More on that later.
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Re: Renovating our Townhouse in Rangsit-Pathum

Postby schuimpge » Mon Dec 17, 2012 10:30 am

The reason we fell in love with the house is for the huge windows at the side. It goes from the floor all the way up to the ceiling, about 8 meters I guess, never measured it exactly. It really makes for a very bright house throughout the day.
Following pictures show the house inside prior to renovation...
Attachments
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Re: Renovating our Townhouse in Rangsit-Pathum

Postby schuimpge » Mon Dec 17, 2012 10:36 am

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Various ceilings where damaged during the PU-foam application, which was expected and ok since we did plan the renovation. It only took more time than expected due to family circumstances and lots of traveling as a result. Delayed the start for a year.
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Re: Renovating our Townhouse in Rangsit-Pathum

Postby schuimpge » Mon Dec 17, 2012 10:39 am

Never mind the boxes and crates everywhere, packed up quite some stuff before the start of renovation.
We did live in the house throughout the renovation. Lots of dust but we survived it ok and had the chance to keep eye on everything.
Thinking about it afterwards, we did not need worry on the work done. It's done very well...
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Re: Renovating our Townhouse in Rangsit-Pathum

Postby schuimpge » Mon Dec 17, 2012 10:47 am

Once we gave the ok for starting the project, our contractor moved very quick. I said yes in the morning and came back after work to find that our terrace in front had become a construction-area.
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first materials delivered, much more to come


Walking around the side and back, I found it had been dug up, our little garden gone (was not much anyway) and piling went in for the Kitchen and Laundry room.
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This used to be a small pond and some plants.
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Re: Renovating our Townhouse in Rangsit-Pathum

Postby schuimpge » Mon Dec 17, 2012 11:04 am

More building materials arrived, every day for us was pretty much a surprise in running around to see what was done and then making pictures of the progress.

The construction-process was amusing in terms of design/ideas. I don't speak Thai, though my wife is Thai, but many things I would draw out on a piece of paper, then explain it with hand and feet pointing at spots and showing examples of materials.
My contractor would in 90% of the cases understand it, the other 10% my wife would step in to help.
Overall, we would typically give him the general outline or idea, choose on colors and layout and let him run with it after that. This has worked very well for us. Our contractor, after having been working for me on many things over the previous years, had quite a good idea of our taste and put that into a final product.
He has since copied our kitchen into his own house...had a good laugh together with them when he showed me the pictures a few weeks ago.
Attachments
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Bricks for all the walls and kitchen block
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Rebar for concrete work
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Kitchen cabinet doors
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more materials and my fishtanks in the back.
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Re: Renovating our Townhouse in Rangsit-Pathum

Postby schuimpge » Mon Dec 17, 2012 11:40 am

Dubbing a bit as to follow the time-line or to do a subject by subject start to finish.
For now, I'll do a time-line but I think it will end up with subject start to finish about half way when there's less drastic changes in the pictures.

So with piling done and excess knocked off, it's time to start with the horizontal beams for the new kitchen walls.
At the same time, preparations have been made for gray-water drains for kitchen and washing-machine.
The concrete/brick drain was already there, under the black bucket, there's a new collection box for waste.

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The concrete slab in the back was left in place as extra support for the new slab pored on top of it.
New slab had it's own rebar tied in with the piling.
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Re: Renovating our Townhouse in Rangsit-Pathum

Postby schuimpge » Mon Dec 17, 2012 11:45 am

No pause in work, coming home one day to find what was previously a large bamboo forest I guess.
And just as quickly, it was all up against the side and back of the house.

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Thai Scaffolding

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At least my contractor thought of neighbors, putting up netting against dust in the back.
Never mind the empty house at the side. Easy as support for the scaffolding.
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Re: Renovating our Townhouse in Rangsit-Pathum

Postby schuimpge » Mon Dec 17, 2012 12:06 pm

The first couple of weeks, most work concentrated on the backside for the new kitchen and outside paint-work.
From there, it slowly progressed into electrical work, bedrooms and floors.
Below you see the first walls coming up for the kitchen. The brick-work guy was a funny one, delivered nice work, but eventually fell out of grace with my contractor after a couple of mistakes and no-shows. In the Netherlands he would have been your typical 80's construction guy, rolling his cigarette and coming over every day on his old motorcycle.
Looking at the pictures, his brick and mortar is solid work compared to what the original builders from Property Perfect delivered.
Will make some pics of that and show it later.

Anyhow, walls going up. The concrete beam with the rebar tie-ins are for the future kitchen top.
For the kitchen, we decided to go with concrete and wood doors. More later on that, but at the time I was looking like... Huh? concrete kitchen? But luckily my wife insisted and it turned out fortunate as the kitchen was in 40cm of water for 6 weeks, during the flooding without a single problem.
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Steel structure and brick fillers

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Tie ins from steel to brick wall

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the 'brick-guy'

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Backwall up to roof-level with the concrete beam and tie-in's

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Backwall of the Laundry Room
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Re: Renovating our Townhouse in Rangsit-Pathum

Postby schuimpge » Mon Dec 17, 2012 12:28 pm

As said, painting started as well.
So far, I think they've done a quality job in terms of lasting paint.
I look at the house behind us that was painted over a year before us. Paint is coming off by the square meter for quite some time already.
Our house only has some dirty spots from rain and roof-runoff, but everything still looks very good.
From what I've been able to count, they went with 2 underlayers/base paint.
Then went over with 2 layers of top-coat.
For the windows/doors it was all 2 layers after cleaning up the surface.
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First layer of final coat.

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Nice view of old and new color
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Re: Renovating our Townhouse in Rangsit-Pathum

Postby schuimpge » Mon Dec 17, 2012 12:35 pm

Oops, Monday Morning gremlins...We started December 2010, renovation from Dec-2010 ~ May/June 2011.
Also, first post just to be clear, we rented the house for about 1 year before we bought it.
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Re: Renovating our Townhouse in Rangsit-Pathum

Postby schuimpge » Mon Dec 17, 2012 2:29 pm

Things moved fast, backwall rendered and the wall & door to the laundry-room shaping up.

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You can see the ledge on the left above the door and windows from the old kitchen.
This will be used for indirect lighting of the kitchen later on.
Attachments
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Re: Renovating our Townhouse in Rangsit-Pathum

Postby schuimpge » Mon Dec 17, 2012 2:43 pm

Painting of the backside was mostly finished before the roof of the new kitchen went on.
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And new aluminium window-frames arrived for the Master-bedroom.
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So that also meant starting the Master-bedroom renovation.
We moved up to our son's bedroom.
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Up goes the nets and covers to start breaking out the balcony.
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And down it goes with the filled up space.
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Re: Renovating our Townhouse in Rangsit-Pathum

Postby schuimpge » Mon Dec 17, 2012 2:52 pm

The bedroom work consisted of filling the space under the arches, putting in 2 windows and filling up other windows / openings.
After that, breaking out the old wall and move to refitting the interior.
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The block wall and the side of the window

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Neighbor's side, closed off

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Other side gets a window

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from outside
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