Garage Conversion is going full steam ahead

I had written about the start of the garage conversion and posted pictures that I could get. But, at this point, the old door from the garage into the laundry room has been closed off and walled to turn into my new bathroom door. The new shower stall has been delivered, installed, and the plumbing connected.

Shower Stall

On the right are the grab-bars, on the left (folded up) is the shower seat.

The rest of the room has been framed and had the different inspections done. Framing, plumbing, and electrical inspections have all passed. Those are the last of the inspections needed and the rest of the earnest work may continue.

I did not take this picture myself, since a lot of the framing has been done, it is not accessible to me right now until, either, the cut the entrance to the house, and/or they build a ramp to the new (additional) entrance door.

They are doing the pink insulation and drywall, and, since they have put on a ceiling, will be blowing insulation for the ceiling.

Floor Broken and Pipes Laid

When they started work, Booth Construction broke through my basement floor and laid the pipes to the sewer. This work was done very quickly and efficiently.

Pipes laid and connected

They had to dig my front yard to take and bury the pipes to connect to my sewer line.

Front yard dug

Once all of the pipes and lines were connected, they filled in the trenches cut in the floor and prepared to pour concrete.

Covered, Mesh

This is were the bulk of the higher price is. The other estimate had a mulching toilet listed on the work. This means he didn’t have plans on burying the pipes. I am much happier with buried pipes even though it cost me more. Booth was also sure to have this work county inspected. He also he estimated in time frames for all the different inspections that will need to be done (framing, plumbing, electrical, etc.)

Accessible Garage Conversion

My home is an older (built 1963) 2 story house. My mobility went down dramatically about 3 years ago and I have not been able to climb our stairs to go into the master bedroom upstairs. So we turned our dining room into our master bedroom. The half-bath on the main floor is not big enough for me to drive my wheelchair into so it is with a bit of difficulty that I get in there. This situation has reached to limit of tolerable.

3 months ago we started shopping out contractors and getting estimates on converting the one car garage into an accessible bathroom and bedroom suite. As with any contractor work you’ll want done, we got multiple estimates.

The first guy had a decent price and a good write up of what he was going to do. Sent a contract detailing the work he was going to do.

The second guy I met with, listened to his idea, thought about it for a few days, and fired him right off. After thinking about it, I realized I was not as comfortable with him as I’d like. Not that I felt unsafe, but he kinda felt like when you have a friend with a cousin who can do the work and give you a good price. This would need to be a well done job.

The third guy we met with, estimated about 3 times as much. He also gave is a write up with his estimate.

The decision seemed clear…Then I scrutinized the two estimates and write ups side-by-side. The difference was clear.

The first guy, it seemed, was NOT going to take care of all of the checks and balances that would make this conversion resalable with the house…Oh. My. God!

So, with another cut, we now had to determine whether to look some more or go with this rock solid submission.

He lives and has done work in Bowie, MD and his company has been in business since the 70s (over 40 years). We went around the neighborhood, to houses he had done work for and talked to the people about his work. Not only did they have good thing to say, but I also did my research on the company and also found just good things. So, regardless of the greater price, we went with Booth Construction, 301-464-1256.

So why pay for the more expensive renovation? The saying is, “The cheap comes out expensive.” My grandmother always said, “A good thing’s not cheap, and a cheap thing’s not good.” Basically, the money we spend now, will not cost us later.

Where’s the grounds staff?

When it snows, you’d think the grounds staff would, at least, clear the handicapped spaces of a doctor’s office. I got to the office to have blood work done but none of the spaces are clear. It’s not early in the morning (9:30) and the snow isn’t deep (maybe 1/8th inch), it would be nice if those with mobility issues didn’t, also, have to deal with this added inconvenience. Those walking with difficulty have the added threat of slipping. People without walking difficulty can have issues on even a little snow so the ability challenged have two (or more) fold difficulties. Seems to me that a doctors office would have some modicum greater sensitivity.

Alexa just paid off BIG TIME

Ok, I am in my wheelchair but can stand a little by pulling myself up on something. I went into my kitchen and pulled up at the sink, but I got really bad balance and fell over and couldn’t get back into my chair. Like an idiot I left my phone in the living room.

Fortunately, Alexa could hear me call to her. She’s also in the living room, but the microphones are good. I asked Alexa to call my wife, who was at work, so she could call around to friends who could come to help me.

So, for those who don’t see a practical purpose of the voice assistant…She just paid off BIG TIME.

People are calling themselves Transabled

People are calling themselves Transabled

This is the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard of. This is stupider than stupid. It takes away from those of us with real disabilities. I wish I could have the choice of NOT being disabled. With all of the argument of “Privilege”, there is little greater example of serious privilege issues.