We have the electricians in. Oh dear.
We only have ourselves to blame. We bought this house in 2009 knowing full well it needed A LOT of work doing to it, and knowing that we had neither the time nor the money to get it all done at once. So here we are, two years later, finally getting around to finishing off the "nice" side of the basement and changing it from a dumping ground for old baby junk and stuff we want to sell this summer in our first-ever Yard Sale (eek! I'm so American!), to a dumping ground for new baby junk and stuff my husband thinks is important. The idea is that all the video games, consoles, too-big-for-the-living-room TV and other assorted gear will now have a place to go, and the upstairs will be a nice place for entertaining guests. We're putting in a fourth bedroom too, although we can't technically call it a bedroom because the only window down there is too small and high up the wall for anyone to escape in an emergency, and another walk-in closet. Hopefully the closet will end up being large enough for future prospective buyers to imagine upgrading it to an en-suite bathroom, but we have neither the need nor the money to do that just yet.
The basement is split into two halves: the side to the left of the stairs houses our washing machine and dryer, all the electrical maintenance and plumbing stuff for the house, the sump pump (if you're British, don't ask), my husband's tools, and shelving for all the boxes of holiday decorations, baby clothes Little O grew out of, and some random carpet tiles my husband imagines he will get around to laying down one day. On the other side, to the right of the stairs, is where the action is happening. When we first moved in, it had rust-coloured carpet sitting on top of bare concrete (not stuck down, or over insulation... just sitting there), and the vilest dark-brown fake wood panelling covering every available inch of wall and ceiling. It was so dark and grim that for the last two years I've not even ventured into the gloom to investigate what's under the stairs. I swear Gollum lived there, muttering about some bloody ring and being generally creepy.
Anyway, in January my in-laws came to visit and drywalled the entire right side of the basement, covering up the wood panelling with clean, bright plasterboard, and ripping up the carpet ready for fresh flooring. It already looks so much nicer, and I'm excited to get down there and start finishing it up. We're having all the lighting re-done today so that the bedroom and closet actually HAVE lights, and getting recessed lights added overhead in the living space because the ceilings are so low. The people who owned the house before us obviously did a lot of this work themselves, because it's taken Sparky the entire morning just to get everything to a state where he can stop ripping out and start installing. There's noise, and dust, and drilling, but progress is good and I think it's going to look so much better when they're done.
Next step: the ceiling!
Oh, and if anyone does want to give us a few million dollars to help speed this process along, please feel free.