The pandemic lockdown saw a HUGE spike in home projects. Chatter Magazine, a monthly lifestyle magazine by the Chattanooga Times Free Press, picked up on this trend. This led to the creation of their DIY Photo Contest, designed to showcase the best home DIY project. For two years now they have hosted this contest as part of their Spring Edition and we’ve had the honor of sponsoring the winning prize, a $100 gift card to our store.
This year’s winners blew us away! Pastor Troy and his wife, Amy, purchased their 1964 Lookout Valley home in 2016 with the intention of making significant changes. At the time, they lived in a 3,200 square foot home. They decided to downsize and use the proceeds of the sale to pay off their mortgage and purchase their new home with cash, becoming debt-free in the process.
Troy and Amy have completed a project for every year they've been in the house. They used the funds that would normally have gone toward their mortgage to pay for the additions and remodeling. They've been documenting the progress on their YouTube channel, The Project Pastor. The first project was adding a ceiling beam and removing a wall between the kitchen and the living room to create an open floor plan.
The biggest project was the bedroom addition. Troy served as the contractor. He hired the following subcontractors: concrete/block, framing/roofing, electrical, and siding.
Troy and Amy installed windows, insulation, drywall, trim, flooring, and did the interior and exterior painting. They used unpainted concrete siding around the whole house to join the bedroom addition with the existing structure.
Two bathrooms were complete remodels with new fixtures. Both showers were tiled. All of the tile thinset, grout, conrete, and most of the tile was purchased from our Chattanooga store.
The basement bathroom was a complete redesign. The locations of the fixtures were changed. This required renting a jackhammer to dig a trench for the drain lines, and rerouting the water lines and electrical in the walls.
The kitchen got new appliances, countertops, tiled backsplash, flooring, and under-cabinet lighting.
The living room got new windows, refinished drywall, recessed lighting, and a new finish on the hardwood floors.
The sunroom was their 2020 Covid lockdown project. They removed the old roof and replaced it with a gabled roof to add more height. They hired skilled laborers and contractors to help with the framing and install roofing. Troy and Amy handled everything else — windows, electrical, insulation, HVAC vents, drywall, trim, painting, and flooring.
A back patio was added, complete with Edison string lights and Adirondack chairs.
The Wallisers were able to start these projects with some serious know-how. Troy: "I grew up on a commercial livestock farm in Florida, and managed another farm in South Georgia for several years. This is where I learned the skills of basic carpentry, electrical, and plumbing. In 2006 we built a house in East Brainerd and I served as the owner/contractor for that build. I worked alongside the subcontractors then, which gave me a lot of experience on how these kinds of projects fit together and are ordered. In our previous home we lived in for eight years we renovated every square foot of it. That experience gave us the confidence to tackle the multiple projects we've completed on this house."
All of that hard work paid off. Troy and Amy have created the perfect home for their family. We can't wait to see what they make in the future!
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