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C&B Project House
Restoration Journal No. 1: Western Michigan Farmhouse
Christine Bridger, a mom of two and restoration warrior, shares her personal triumphs, struggles, tips and tricks in her restoration diary. Her DIT (Do It Together) philosophy brings the entire family together as they turn a dilapidated farmhouse into a cozy cottage retreat.
Written by Christine Bridger

December 5, 2016

So we really bought a farm! The shock has still not worn off but there is no time to keep asking ourselves if we are crazy. We need to immediately figure out how to make this appear like a logical and brilliant decision. First thing on the list is figuring out how are we going to pay for the renovations?! We ended up paying cash for the home and land so there goes that money. But…we received great news this week – we can use our cash purchase as our 20 percent down payment for a construction loan. Phew. Feeling a little smarter (I’ll just pretend that we knew that would work before we bought a run down farm we’d never seen in person).

The next big to-do is to figure out the scope of renovations we are going to take on. The bank requires full blown architectural renderings, formal proposal and appraisal before the loan can close. But even before all of that, we need to apply for a specific loan amount, which means pulling together a rough sketch of the floor plan to get to a square footage number, high-level mood boards to provide direction for finishes and a chat with our contractor about the ballpark budget. We had a family meeting to decide what we were envisioning. Not totally aligned, but we’ll get there. There’s at least one thing we can agree on: This farmhouse renovation is going to be an adventure that provides years of memories.