Tiny Rooms, Low Ceilings In An Old Mountain House

You've bought some land in the mountains with an old house you'd like to live in before you build your dream house.

But the rooms are tiny and dark and the ceilings too low.

Can the ceilings be made higher, the rooms bigger?

In this case, yes, and yes. Partition walls can be taken out, like the one that used to divide this room in two.

Bead board covering the ceilings and walls can be salvaged. Funky as it looks, this bead board was milled locally from clear yellow pine

. The old mountains folks didn't have money, but they had plenty of good lumber.

The salvaged bead board was later used as a wall covering

The rough cut yellow pine & hemlock ceiling joists were also reused to frame the new ceiling which went from 7 feet to 10 feet at the highest point.

The new ceilings, with new windows, transformed a dark, cramped little house into a light and spacious feeling little house.
The customer chose to use the salvaged bead board without refinishing it. Lead contamination is often a problem with old paint, but not in this case.

And the sanded floors were left unstained...
...including salvaged poplar boards that now serve as a plank floor in one room.

Some Said: Burn It Down!

A 1,100 square foot farm house in Madison County, built prior to World War I, with 8" chestnut logs used as mud sills, and much of the framing of chestnut and hemlock. Bath addition not visible.
A small house needs a big porch, so add 470 sf. Purchase price was so low, it made sense to fix it up.
Some fancy railings and creative camouflage over ugly cement block make a charming country cottage. Before you demolish that old house, talk to Joe!

Remodel This? R U Serious? Why?


The view. Site development in the mountains can be costly. Take advantage of grandfather's work if it can be salvaged.    

Save some money and be green.


Hemlock "wain edge" or "Carolina siding" was cut from trees on the property.

Granpa would not recognize the place. It mutated to more than 4x its original size, and unlike Granpa, lives on into the 21st Century.




A Doublewide Has Potential

The basic factory box

Backside even more boring

Go to work on the front to add an enclosed porch

Add a porch to the back side also

You've got a 52'x8' coverecd deck in front

Add an enclosed, screened porch on the back for indoor/outdoor living.

The doublewide has evolved.

Design Your Own Storage Shed

(Not Available at Lowes)

The client wanted a "saltbox" style gable roof for his 12'x16' shed.

He also wanted to store tools out of the rain under the extended eaves.

The 4.5 foot overhang required some bracing that will also serve to store long lengths of light weight materials off the ground. Like an awning, it gives coverage for outdoor storage.

Site building the shed makes it easy to put in all the footings a shed needs to hold serious weight for the long term.