This is what we are starting with. It’s a typical Belgian old house. In the past they started with a small one-room house and people then added on to that. The result is a series of houses that consist of multiple added rooms, all constructed differently and with plumbing and electrical wires that have been installed in a rather bizarre and insecure way. Building code doesn’t allow adding extra rooms because it doesn’t look nice. It’s not practical as well. On the other hand, building that way allowed people to start small and affordable. With increasing wage and savings, they could build bigger and increase their luxury. With the code being what it is, people have to build the house to the size they eventually want it to be. It also means that people have to find a way to gather funds for the entire project at the start of it.
The front part of the house is the most recent part (from 1962). That’s the part that we will keep as it’s a sound brick construction. It was well built and can still last our entire lifetime. On the pictures, these are the rooms with blue carpet and those with orange walls. The other rooms towards the back of the house will be demolished and rebuild to today’s standards. At least, that’s the idea for now. We hired an architect to design the construction. He understands the new generations’ needs and knows a lot of professionals that agree with his vision. The architect is a no-nonsense guy that loves his job. He’s not an interior designer but that’s something my lovely girlfriend will take care of.
Whilst the architect is busy drawing, we have already started renovating the attic that will remain. It’s a good starter for us. We will be redoing the floor construction, roof windows, insulation and sheet rock. It will allow us to get to know the different materials and tools we will need in the ‘big’ project afterwards.