By / 5th May, 2014 / Home / Off

Remodeling our Historic Home is messy work!

As we go through the process of remodeling our historic home to turn it back into a Bed and Breakfast, replacing the roof seems like the messiest and noisiest job of all. Every roofing job is messy and the noise is constant, but when you’re removing original cedar shake shingles plus 3 layers of composite shingles on top of them – well, let’s just say it’s more than any of us planned for.

Shingles falling off the roof while remodeling our historic homeI guess that phrase “more than we planned for” is pretty descriptive of the overall project. It seems like every time we open up a wall or tear up some flooring to start on a new section, we find “surprises”. We’ve come across sub-flooring joists hanging in mid air, plumbing runs to nowhere, and 40+ foot lengths of original cast iron pipe – some of which was still intact. (Notice, I say “some” not “all” – ugh.) Our contractors estimate that they’ve removed 20 tons of shingles from the roof. (Be sure to click on the image to the left to see a cool video of falling shingles.)

Our local old house expert, Bill Moore, says he enjoys this kind of work because he likes solving puzzles. All of these surprises are understandable though, given that over it’s lifetime The Gullett House, aka The Fairview, has been through numerous repairs and remodels.

Throughout its History, The Fairview has been:Original cedar shake shingles to be replaced as we remodel our historic home

  • A private residence for the original owners, The Wilkins family
  • A private residence for the second owners and its namesakes, Tom and Lily Gullett
  • It may have been housing for WWII Veterans (we’re not certain about this)
  • A nine unit apartment building sometime in the late 50s, early 60s – (student housing maybe?)
  • A popular Bed & Breakfast, The Fairview, run by Duke and Nancy Waggoner from 1991 to 2000
  • Our extended family’s home housing 3 generations of Ballards and Schenkers
  • And soon to be Austin’s newest Boutique Bed and Breakfast Hotel!

We’re moving forward quickly now and all of the mess & noise is actually a sign of progress. We fully expect to keep finding and solving puzzles. The goal is to modernize The Fairview so we can provide an up to date experience for our guests – part of our “Get what you stay for” philosophy. We’re also trying to undo some of the mistakes made in the past while respecting the rich history of this grand old building – using as much care and attention to detail as we can while remodeling our historic home.

We can’t wait to share it with you!