Welcome to This Old Mother Fucking House. If you are offended by that title in any way, then this is not the site for you. I am not out to bash This Old House or any other historic house site. I watch their You Tube videos all the time and those dudes are top notch. That said, I will be critically blogging about some of the products historic house sites pitch. A lot of them are junk and they pitch them because they get compensated and are not transparent about disclosing it.
The purpose of this site:
I bought an 1880 Italianate style Victorian era house located in downtown Santa Barbara, CA in July 2018. The house had been neglected and had a history as a heroin house, some of the rooms were even rented by the hour. A contractor friend of mine told me that I was lucky, had they been meth addicts, they would have torn the walls down to see what was inside. Instead, they just didn’t really fix anything, clean much or make improvements. My son Brian and I worked on it together for about a year and then he went back to school and I have been doing the work myself, at times with casual labor to assist. I want to share our experiences in how we approached restoring the house, what we did, what we shouldn’t have done, how you might do it better, as well as some insights on how to utilize the plethora of historic home restoration websites out there.
Background of site host:
My name is Stephen Wheeler and I live in Santa Barbara, CA. I am originally from San Diego and moved here in 1976 to finish college at UCSB and found my way back in 1981 after serving time in LA for three years. My three kids were born and raised here in a joint effort with my two ex-wives. I have three professional licenses, the least of which is my RE Broker’s license, but it does come in handy now and then. I also practice as a CPA and have a CFP(r) certificate as well.
You may be wondering at this point what a pencil pusher is doing buying an old house and trying to restore it DIY style. The short answer is that after more than 35 years as a tax consultant/preparer, I would like to do something useful with my time! It occurs to me that over 35 years of professional knowledge could disappear faster than a meth addicts brain cells if our government ever came to its senses and scrapped the tax system for something more practical.
- Buying the house
- House whispering
- Curing the zoning violations that came with the purchase
- How to get the most out of historic house sites and DIY You Tube videos
- Realistic budgets