House Plans 101

So you may know the plan, but for the sake of record, I’ll briefly review. I’ll move through it quickly. It’s not something I feel like dwelling on.

In late June we purchased this property:

It is 3 acres, a rundown story and a half, a Morton building garage, and a decent sized shed. Most of the trees have something to be desired, but it’s still a pretty spot in the country with lots of room and potential.

The house was too small and while the structure was very solid, the basement had a huge crack in one wall. Plus mold and mildew down there was bad, so we planned to lift the house and pour a new basement. Then we’d lower the house back down, gut and remodel; new floor plan and an addition. We felt there was a solid frame that we didn’t want to waste. Other than that, all would be new.

Brad and Calvin have been a big part of at least 2 other house liftings and felt confident they could handle the job. We were all convinced of as much, so after plenty of plans and preparations the house came up, November 25th.

The day before Thanksgiving the house was at least a foot up when the girls and I went out to see and take some video. Literally seconds after I shut off the camera, the house started to groan and the beams fell over. It happened so fast, but there were warning yells from underneath, me screaming, men running and then all was silent. Too dramatic for all of us. The guys were safe – Brad, Calvin, and Dad (Denny) – but the house was not.

There were 4 vertical columns with jacks on them lifting the 2 horizontal beams the house was sitting on. The weight had not been distributed properly on one of the columns, and a wooden block (a piece of the column) busted and shot out. Brad had been trying to reinforce that particular column when it happened. So when the block busted, the jack tipped, and so did the beams which sent the house falling. Thank God, enough of the old foundation was still in place and the house landed on the old center wall and the old north wall of the basement.

More details on what exactly happened certainly exist, but they don’t really matter. We’re not planning to do any more lifting jobs.

What matters is, what next? Brad wasted little time before thinking on a new plan. Obviously we were upset and sad and there was grieving. And I was mostly crying and praising God about how close I felt I had been to losing my husband. But we moved quickly and confidently onto the next plan. The weather hasn’t cooperated, so we won’t get started till after winter. And I don’t know how soon we’ll be moving in, but here is Plan B: http://www.frankbetz.com/homeplans/plan_info.html?pn=3894.

After months of drawing and discussing a floor plan for the first house, it took us all of 4 days to pick out this one. Thankfully we had learned something in the process of Plan A, and not just about houses. With the help of God, we’ll learn a lot more and make it through the process of building this house, a dream we have stumbled upon. Keep us in your prayers.

1 Response

  1. Christine says:

    Thanks for sharing all this–I really enjoyed learning more about the whole process. But one thing made me sad–that I have been too busy to have known all this has been going on! I love love love the new plan and can’t wait for the day we can scrapbook there together :)!

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