Met with Pat, the structural engineer, this morning at the house. We talked through the issue with the rotten wood, and the poor support of the end-of-bedroom wall, as well as the incorrect fall of the concrete outside the front of the property.
The proposed solution is to brick up the doorway between the living room and breakfast room, leaving the only door between the two as the kitchen doors. This has the side effect of making that end of the kitchen/breakfast room a not-a-corridor, which it would have been if the door was left in place. The other side of the bricks will get plastered and skimmed, and turned into an alcove for the living room, next to where the fireplace would be.
It turns out that this approach means we should be able to keep the little nook/alcove from the old window, which is nice. I was fully prepared to have to block it up too, but Pat was happy with just building a decent wall in the doorway, tying it all together, and then putting in two lintels above the alcove reveal to support the RSJ.
On the not so good side, he took one look at the boards that form the basis of the platform for the balcony, and basically said “fuck me”. Completely wrong board type for use where water may ingress, and showing distinct signs of white mould/fungus. So that’s going to be a take up everything and rebuild it job.
As for the front yard – his opinion is that whatever we do now will be temporary, as I’m going to want to rip up the entire yard in a few years to re-grade it and make it consistent. At the end of this project, it’s going to be a combination of old tarmac, new concrete, and pea gravel – and some of that new concrete will be a strip running from the house to the end of the driveway.
However, the planned approach is to get some fall away from the house, and then use gullies at the property boundary to take away water from the downpipe and any run-off from the fall. This will keep the inside of the house dry, hopefully! We did this on the other side of the kitchen, and it’s been fine so far.
Have some flowers.