Thursday, February 24, 2011

On the Fence

Exciting news first - we are scheduled to close on our house TOMORROW!  Our original closing date was February 18, which we pushed back to February 28, which we then pushed forward to February 25.  Buying a house is really super fun.  And cheap!  So cheap.  I don't even know what to do with the tens of dollars we have left to our names right now.

Now we have a slightly terrifying list of repairs and updates to do, and a fairly tight budget with which to do them.  Being the anal lawyer I am, I already have several spreadsheets of estimates and budgets (color coded, duh) so we're just going to take it one cell at a time and keep reminding ourselves it doesn't have to be PERFECT! right away. 

First up, our house is currently suffering from some curb appeal...issues.  In other words it's ass ugly. 

Where to start.  We got issues.  The front fence is currently a lovely mix of termite-infested mismatched plywood, painted two different colors.  The ornate metal gate is kind of cool, but doesn't fit with the design of the rest of the house.  The driveway is a mix of cracked concrete and bricks, which actually fits right in with the rest of the landscape design at the moment.  In sum - it's a hot mess.  One of our priorities right now is to replace the front fence.  The current fence will most likely come down this weekend as soon as we get our hands on a sledgehammer.

Problem is, I'm not a fence design expert.  We know that we want to keep a similar fence height to what's already there.  It looks a bit imposing and takes away from the cute appeal of our house, but we're on a fairly busy street and we'd like to maintain privacy and the extra level of security of a fence that's not easy to hop over. 

To help with inspiration, as soon as we put an offer on the house we began researching fence designs.  This entailed a very scientific study conducted by walking around Venice, which is a neighborhood we thought would have some cool fence designs to check out (and food trucks...nom nom nom) and snapping pictures of our favorites:

After our very careful market research, we decided that we liked the look of a darker wood fence, with stain instead of paint, in a fairly simple craftsman-style design.  I also decided that eating a bacon wrapped hot dog and buffalo tater tots was maybe not good for my overall health.

The next step was to put my shockingly advanced photoshop skills to use and figure out what a new fence will look like:

Looks cute, no?  Oh, we're also planning on replacing the garage door if you couldn't tell from the photo.  More on that later.

The next step is to narrow down a contractor to build the fence of our dreams, hopefully for under $1,000 or so.  We'd also like to replace the gate to the guest house (peeking out from the right side of the photo).  Is this possible?  I have no idea.  We'll soon find out!

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