3 yrs to FI: ertyu's journal

Where are you and where are you going?
Alphaville
Posts: 2767
Joined: Thu Oct 03, 2019 10:50 am
Location: Quarantined

Re: 3 yrs to FI: ertyu's journal

Post by Alphaville »

solid motor and the cables look in good shape.

very nice roof view!

AxelHeyst
Posts: 498
Joined: Thu Jan 09, 2020 4:55 pm
Location: The Mountains, USA

Re: 3 yrs to FI: ertyu's journal

Post by AxelHeyst »

Oh man, what a cool project! Congrats on everything, I for one am a little jealous of the work you have ahead of you. The sense of satisfaction when putting your before pictures next to after pictures is going to be immense.

sky
Posts: 1223
Joined: Tue Jan 04, 2011 2:20 am

Re: 3 yrs to FI: ertyu's journal

Post by sky »

What city is that? If we are not supposed to know the location of your hidden lair, please ignore this question.

CS
Posts: 677
Joined: Sat Dec 29, 2012 10:24 pm

Re: 3 yrs to FI: ertyu's journal

Post by CS »

That landlord is lucky to have found you. Congrats on the progress. Thanks, too, for sharing the roof shots. Very cool to see.

Flurry
Posts: 63
Joined: Tue Oct 27, 2020 1:30 am
Location: Vienna, Austria

Re: 3 yrs to FI: ertyu's journal

Post by Flurry »

I really like your project, must be a lot of fun to get that apartment in better shape. I think I'd spend way too much money on that so it's interesting how it works out for you. :D

ertyu
Posts: 1584
Joined: Sun Nov 13, 2016 2:31 am

Re: 3 yrs to FI: ertyu's journal

Post by ertyu »

Flurry wrote:
Thu Dec 03, 2020 3:51 am
I think I'd spend way too much money on that so it's interesting how it works out for you. :D
Spending too much money on it is the standard solution for places in this condition -- and most apartments coming on the market in the central parts of second tier Eastern European cities are either like this or close. Basically, the neighborhoods were built out between 1950 and 1975, and the original owners lived first through socialism, then through the mother of all economic crises the first 15 yrs of the transition. When finally in the last 10 yrs things turned up economically, they were already old and stuck with their low state pensions. It is very common that apartments in "good," centrally located neighborhoods haven't really had much of maintenance or repair done on them for what seems like 20 or 40 years.

There are two solutions to this. The first is to buy in a newly constructed building ("new" = after the transition to market economy). These often look nice at the time of purchase but are already starting to show issues. Capitalism incentivises builders to skimp on materials: it's very common to claim you invested huge sums of money in quality construction materials, build with the crappiest materials cutting corners, then sell the newly built units at a profit and pay all necessary bribes. Thus, buying new construction is often hit or miss. You don't really know the quality of construction you're getting.

The second solution - which my cousin did, for instance - would be to get one of the old, solid apartments which are old but still reliably built to code and mortgage up the place. You take out 20 or 25k euro variable rate loan which seems a good idea now but might bite you in the ass later, and use it to fully gut the apartment. You put in vinyl windows and redo all wiring and plumbing to meet the needs of a modern household. You do all the currently fashionable things, like installing laminate flooring, covering up your bathroom pipes, and the like. This isn't something which I'm interested in doing - I could pay the extra 20k out of pocket, but I don't want to. I don't think it's a good idea. 10 years from now, the formerly fashionable cheap laminate flooring you installed would probably look horrible and be long out of favor. Vinyl windows, last I checked, come with a 20-25 yrs lifespan: so at 60, I'd be gutting and replacing all windows again? The renovation that was done on my bathroom was clearly very expensive for its time, yet still looks old-fashioned 15-20 years later. The fixtures are of good quality and the work was done well: the sink is secure and shiny now the grime's been washed off, ditto the toilet with the caveat that I still need to check whatever tf is going on with the link to the sewage drain. The tile grout is still secure, etc. Yet, even though the initial investment in that renovation was clearly large, it is very unlikely to endear the place to any current buyer.

Thus, what I plan to do is clean, repair, and restore as much of the original fixtures as I can. For instance, instead of replacing the windows, I will strip the paint, repair with wood filler, condition, reglaze, and repaint. Instead of replacing the interior doors with ones that will still look unfashionable by the time I'm ready to sell, I will clean, repaint, and repair the current ones. If I desire it that much, I will replace the door handles with more modern-looking ones. Instead of rewiring the place, I will keep and use the current set-up. Being a single person, it is way more than enough for my needs. I might change the plastic outlet and switch covers when I am closer to ready to sell with ones which are in fashion, but for now, I don't mind using the existing ones. Etcetera.

Last but not least, the fact that the place is this run down is a blessing in disguise, but this post is already quite long so I will probably write more about that later, after taking some pictures that illustrate my point.

ertyu
Posts: 1584
Joined: Sun Nov 13, 2016 2:31 am

Re: 3 yrs to FI: ertyu's journal

Post by ertyu »

So I've got corona. Keep your fingers crossed. I am 40, fat, male, and A blood type, only one of which is working for me -- kind of.

Mister Imperceptible
Posts: 1461
Joined: Fri Nov 10, 2017 4:18 pm

Re: 3 yrs to FI: ertyu's journal

Post by Mister Imperceptible »

Take lots of hot steamy showers. Breathe deep. Sleep.

sky
Posts: 1223
Joined: Tue Jan 04, 2011 2:20 am

Re: 3 yrs to FI: ertyu's journal

Post by sky »

good luck

Alphaville
Posts: 2767
Joined: Thu Oct 03, 2019 10:50 am
Location: Quarantined

Re: 3 yrs to FI: ertyu's journal

Post by Alphaville »

still time to appease the house ghosts man 🙈

or maybe it's domovoy business? ;)

look, there are no atheists in the trenches, so why not. plus there's pascal's wager :D

a little superstition goes a long way, heh heh,

good health to you friend, and a fast recovery.

but fix the bad juju.

Crusader
Posts: 169
Joined: Wed Aug 19, 2020 11:16 pm
Location: Toronto, Canada

Re: 3 yrs to FI: ertyu's journal

Post by Crusader »

ertyu wrote:
Thu Dec 03, 2020 7:08 am
The first is to buy in a newly constructed building ("new" = after the transition to market economy). These often look nice at the time of purchase but are already starting to show issues. Capitalism incentivises builders to skimp on materials: it's very common to claim you invested huge sums of money in quality construction materials, build with the crappiest materials cutting corners, then sell the newly built units at a profit and pay all necessary bribes.
Can confirm. The same thing happens in Serbia. This is why I like renting in an apartment building, even in Canada. Anything that breaks is not my responsibility to fix. If you buy your own condo, you have: property taxes, the utilities, maintenance fees... AND if something breaks in the building that is expensive to repair, I think there is some kind of a building corporation which gets funding from... the owners. How so many people are buying condos for the prices that they are is beyond me. I think that it's a status symbol more than anything here. I have a friend who bought an expensive condo recently because "she wanted to get in on the real estate market", whatever the hell that means.

Sorry about 'rona, you'll be fine!

basuragomi
Posts: 191
Joined: Tue Oct 15, 2019 3:13 pm

Re: 3 yrs to FI: ertyu's journal

Post by basuragomi »

100% agree with your renovation approach. Ripping out perfectly functional stuff just because it's old is the most baffling part of typical renovations to me. It's like reverse survivor bias, throwing out what is empirically the best-quality stuff you can get!

7Wannabe5
Posts: 6919
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:03 am

Re: 3 yrs to FI: ertyu's journal

Post by 7Wannabe5 »

Take very good care of yourself!

CS
Posts: 677
Joined: Sat Dec 29, 2012 10:24 pm

Re: 3 yrs to FI: ertyu's journal

Post by CS »

Oh, no! Take care of yourself. Vitamin D if you haven't been taking it already. Sleep on your side or belly to help with breathing if it gets bad (hope not).

CDR
Posts: 29
Joined: Sun Sep 06, 2020 9:45 pm
Location: Canada

Re: 3 yrs to FI: ertyu's journal

Post by CDR »

Hope you have a speedy recovery Ertyu!

disk_poet
Posts: 58
Joined: Thu Aug 06, 2020 3:33 am

Re: 3 yrs to FI: ertyu's journal

Post by disk_poet »

I've been following your journey into home ownership with interest. Seems like an adventure.

Now I hope you get well soon. Try to keep a good state of mind and do good things for your body!

Western Red Cedar
Posts: 223
Joined: Tue Sep 01, 2020 2:15 pm

Re: 3 yrs to FI: ertyu's journal

Post by Western Red Cedar »

I hope you get better soon so you can go enjoy those views from your roof. Your renovation project is inspiring and reading about these endeavors on the forums keeps me motivated to keep learning and trying new things.

mooretrees
Posts: 430
Joined: Sun Jan 27, 2019 1:21 pm

Re: 3 yrs to FI: ertyu's journal

Post by mooretrees »

Hope you're doing okay man. Will be looking forward to your next post.

rube
Posts: 694
Joined: Tue Oct 02, 2012 7:54 pm
Location: Europe (NL)

Re: 3 yrs to FI: ertyu's journal

Post by rube »

Wish you a quick recovery Ertyu!

NuncFluens
Posts: 173
Joined: Fri Jun 26, 2020 6:25 am
Location: Bavaria, Germany

Re: 3 yrs to FI: ertyu's journal

Post by NuncFluens »

Oh man, I totally missed the corona-post and was wondering what everyone was talking about. Get well soon!

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