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Why would they remove the floor and ceiling?

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Why would they remove the floor and ceiling?

I have noticed that several houses around me have been sold and gutted and done up, adding a room in the loft space.

 

One thing that I have noticed is the holes in the external walls, where they have removed the joists, that support the first floor and ceiling of the ground floor rooms.

 

I'm not a builder, and this seems to be a new trend, can anyone shed some light on why you would do this?

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Re: Why would they remove the floor and ceiling?

Many years ago we were selling  our house in Bromley. A prospective purchaser came to view the property accompanied by her builder. Walking round she was saying “we can move this wall, demolish that wall, move the kitchen somewhere else, extend out to the garden, convert the loft, demolish the garage” etc, etc. 
I remember commenting to the Wife that maybe she’s looking at the wrong property. Later the agent explained that it wasn’t the property she was interested in but the location. So @Leapy  you could be living in a highly desirable area....

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Re: Why would they remove the floor and ceiling?

Exactly that @Champnet .

Any property I have looked at has been about where it is and the amount of space it occupies which I can change by right should I wish to do so. Sure some regard is paid to the existing structure, but only if it suits my purpose. The downside of that of course is that you need the resources by way of time, money and labour but if you can square that circle, then go ahead and knock a few walls down and strip out all that is excess to your needs.

My last place I kept and existing floor whilst constructing a new one all of which turned into a five year project as I did ninety percent of the work myself. The same with my present place stripping out the entire first floor walls and adding a new staircase and roof - the latter being left to professionals purely because of logistics.

Now of course they also dig down as well as rebuilding up. There have even been cases where the entire building has been demolished keeping only the original facade or front wall, and something I first saw done years back when a large store in Croydon by the name of Grants I think it was got rebuilt completely apart from the front facade. 

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Re: Why would they remove the floor and ceiling?


@Leapy wrote:

 

 

One thing that I have noticed is the holes in the external walls, where they have removed the joists, that support the first floor and ceiling of the ground floor rooms.

 

I'm not a builder, and this seems to be a new trend, can anyone shed some light on why you would do this?


Maybe to make it easier to get stuff in (or out) of the houses.  Grin

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Re: Why would they remove the floor and ceiling?

@Minivanman  I remember when I sold my very old cottage (17c). The buyer was telling me of his plans and as he's doing so, I'm thinking, what on earth are you buying this one for. One was the enlarge the galley kitchen by removing the wall (30" stone wall) and making the dining room / kitchen all one - totally destroying the character of that part of the cottage. Good luck on that one I thought. Couple of years later it came on the market again. He'd done what I'd wanted to do at one end but the kitchen / dining room were still very much the same. Not touched at all.

 

And lack of support is one reason houses fall down. My brother bought a house that the original occupier had knocked about. He decided that he'd enlarge the bathroom. Not long after he started he got a structural engineer in very swiftly, who confirmed his suspicions that all that was holding one half of the adjacent chimney stack up was a single brick sticking out. Yes, you can strip out floors but if the person doing it doesn't really know what they are up to structural wise, disaster isn't that far away.

 

I had much the same experience when I brought down the lathe and plaster ceiling in the bedroom. When I'd finished tidying up, looking up I suddenly realised that all that was stopping the rafters coming down was a single 6" nail. Houses can be a minefield.

Ever helpful. Grin Sure, I’d love to help you out. Now which way did you come in?
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Re: Why would they remove the floor and ceiling?


@Champnet wrote:

Many years ago we were selling  our house in Bromley. A prospective purchaser came to view the property accompanied by her builder. Walking round she was saying “we can move this wall, demolish that wall, move the kitchen somewhere else, extend out to the garden, convert the loft, demolish the garage” etc, etc. 
I remember commenting to the Wife that maybe she’s looking at the wrong property. Later the agent explained that it wasn’t the property she was interested in but the location. So @Leapy  you could be living in a highly desirable area....


If she was planning to do all that work and the house was past a certain age but in a good area it might be cheaper to demolish the house and build a new one, the advances in insulation in properties, along with new wiring, central heating etc may make such a project cheaper than mass alterations with all the possible problems that might arise.

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Re: Why would they remove the floor and ceiling?


@Leapy wrote:

 

 

One thing that I have noticed is the holes in the external walls, where they have removed the joists, that support the first floor and ceiling of the ground floor rooms.

 

I'm not a builder, and this seems to be a new trend, can anyone shed some light on why you would do this?


@Leapy 

Do you know whether the houses have been converted into flats?  Maybe the old timber joists/floor have been replaced with concrete beam and block, and the holes were to facilitate the insertion of the concrete beams?

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Re: Why would they remove the floor and ceiling?

@idonno 

You really have to be so careful with old buildings as many did not even have foundations. Start knocking them about at your peril if you are not aware at how some of these pre planning regulation places were built. 

Do you remember when they had to totally refurbish number ten Downing Street back in the 60s? Turned out the entire row were built in a shocking manner and some really serious structural repairs had to be carried out. 

We now live in what was once an old cow shed, but our last place was a  real ramshackle 17th century farm house and one where I had to have the entire pine end demolished and rebuilt as it was falling away - yep, no foundations on the existing structure but still, not bad for three hundred years before it started to tilt!   

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Re: Why would they remove the floor and ceiling?

@RobPN Block and beam, does sound like an option and I guess lowering the first floor and the ceiling on the second floor would give more room in the roof for another set of rooms, to replace the old attic.

 

Also block and beam sounds like a simple way to add insulation and facilitate new plumbing and rewiring too.

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Re: Why would they remove the floor and ceiling?

Folks seem to want to rebuild these interiors to the extent where they have those really large kitchens with a central island. All very nice but it usually involves either some serious wall knocking downs or an extension. Shame though when is loses what character there was. 

Daft when population grows houses get smaller. Mind you, I've traced family back to the 19th century with two rooms, half a dozen  of kids and a lodger to boot. And hold on to your hat if not the bedpost, my paternal grandmother was the youngest of nineteen!  

 

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Re: Why would they remove the floor and ceiling?

Some of the adverts for new kitchens make me laugh, the space needed for some would mean turning the whole of our ground floor into a single room, even then some of these modern kitchens would not fit.

Not sure why anyone would want a massive kitchen as many who could afford such a thing are likely to spend much time dining out and certainly not spending their time cooking anything other than basic meals.

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Re: Why would they remove the floor and ceiling?

I am not a builder, so anything I say can't possibly be true 😀

Me and my family have had our lofts boarded, but we were told that is not a conversion. A conversion is a lot more involved than that (hence costs a lot more £'s) so while it does make it more easier to get around when you store stuff up there - nice you're not going to so be paranoid about putting your foot through the ceiling.

Technically it is not habitable as an additional room. I wonder how much a conversion is? I reckon it will be at least a four figure sum.

I guess it depends on how much value it will add to your property really.

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Re: Why would they remove the floor and ceiling?

@gleneagles I know someone, that has a fantastic big clean kitchen. Smiley I asked them, " How do you keep it so spotless and tidy" and they tell me, they have a "Lady to clean for them, three days a week, and they never cook hot food in-doors, and they only time they did, they had an Oven-cleaner  company come round to sort-out the mess".Lips_are_sealed

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Re: Why would they remove the floor and ceiling?


@Alex wrote:Technically it is not habitable as an additional room. I wonder how much a conversion is? I reckon it will be at least a four figure sum. I guess it depends on how much value it will add to your property really.

More like a 5 figure sum! Friend of mine ending up having steel beams installed (crane etc to install) to spread the load of the additional room in the roof space. As to adding value, seem to recall it added very little when it came to selling.

Ever helpful. Grin Sure, I’d love to help you out. Now which way did you come in?
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Re: Why would they remove the floor and ceiling?

Yeah @Leapy sounds a bit like me really, I guess they like their takeaways then 😁

I am so bad the last time I used my oven I managed to burn a supermarket pizza. I put it in the right temparature and left it for a long as it told me to and sat on my computer. When I checked it is was like charcoal, defintely wll done and it set my smoke alarm off. Saves me from testing that I suppose.

Someone said to me "Well didn't you keep checking it every 5 minutes?". Of course I didn't. I blame bad cooking instructions rather than me being bad at cooking. Always a good system to blame something else rather than yourself. 😃