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Old 08-05-2016, 10:29 AM
 
16,931 posts, read 2,174,066 times
Reputation: 27920

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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigDGeek View Post
I wouldn't generalize so much; there's a lot of plywood in 50s houses, even fancy ones in Preston Hollow. (Demolish some built-ins and you'll see.)

My house is 59 years old and has lots of plywood in it. The interior doors are hollow core doors (as most interior doors are). The floors are solid oak heart. The chimney is solid brick all the way through the attic. The walls are drywall. The studs are true 2x4s. The plumbing is mostly copper except where it has been replaced in one bathroom (where it's PVC). The wiring is copper but it does not have a ground wire throughout the house. A couple of individual outlets are grounded.

The insulation in the attic is quite poor...but that is also easy to overcome. The walls themselves have some insulation in some areas, but I'm not going to rip out all the walls to figure out where it's missing.

I do know from demolishing built-ins and even post-build remodeling done in the mid-late 1960s that this house is extremely well built and extremely solid. I've also helped friends in newer houses do demolition and it goes a lot easier. Just putting that out there. In this house, you'll break a sweat and then some. The nails alone...my god, they're massive. And they used so many of them.
I live in a 100 year old house with a crawl space underneath. There's these grates at various points around the house that are in various states of falling apart.
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Old 08-05-2016, 10:39 AM
 
11,045 posts, read 11,098,003 times
Reputation: 10058
Quote:
Originally Posted by Threestep View Post
Skilled craftsmen do not crawl out from under a cabbage. It takes years of training. In some parts of the US guilds are still active. We had very good carpenters, tile layers and stone masons handle larger jobs at our Texas home. They were not cheap. They did awesome jobs. We accommodated special needs from lunch with their families on the patio to insane hours. Every single one I recommended and will gladly do so again. I am an extremely picky customer.

The gentleman who handled molding and cabinetry in our Oklahoma house agreed to additional pullouts and a (give or take) 15x10 Knotty Alder bookshelf in the office. I expected a build in frame and some boards. Hand shake agreement. Price had me a bit but there were more important things to deal with. FOUR months later a phone call - he will be here Saturday. It took four guys who obviously have worked together four hours to put The Beast in. It is over the top and could be out of an old library. His side kicks told me he does very little small projects but puts his all into the ones he accepts. He sure did!!! His comment - he saw some of the books stacked all over and wanted to showcase them. Well, he also put 12 inch stained/lacquered crown molding in a 3 1/2 car garage:>)

Would I recommend him? To folks who can work with him on his schedule and price - YES!
Is this guy from Arkansas by chance? My little brother is an architect and GC. His favorite cabinet, staircase, molding and custom furniture guy is from Arkansas and he is almost impossible to get without several months notice and otherwise sounds similar.
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Old 08-05-2016, 10:51 AM
 
Location: North Texas
24,571 posts, read 35,617,910 times
Reputation: 28459
Quote:
Originally Posted by numbersguy100 View Post
They are in demand - but not at a market clearing price. People don't care about quality anymore, or at least they are not willing to pay for it. You apparently aren't since you think skilled craftsmen are too expensive. I have no problem finding skilled labor to work on my home, but I am willing to pay what they ask.
I didn't say they're too expensive for me to use. I said they're too expensive to be used widely in new home construction so you get new builds with tons of pre-fab flat pack cabinetry, badly mitred crown moulding, etc.

I have trouble finding good skilled quality labor but it's because I don't know who these people are and I have to rely on other peoples' advice. Most of the time when I ask for recommendations, I get a list of people NOT to use. Not because they charged too much, but because they did crappy work.

Luckily between my husband and I we can handle a lot of work that other people may not be able to do, but there are things neither of us know how to do (or would want to handle). In those cases we call in a pro. We're more than capable of tearing out built-ins and fixing the walls where they were attached, replacing fixtures/outlets/light switches, replacing faucets, garbage disposals, toilets, etc. We get pros to fix the HVAC, anything having to do with gas, etc. Y'know, common sense stuff.

Right now we don't need a carpenter but it'd be nice to have a phone number or two in the virtual Rolodex in case we ever do.
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Old 08-05-2016, 12:05 PM
 
16,931 posts, read 2,174,066 times
Reputation: 27920
Quote:
Originally Posted by EDS_ View Post
Is this guy from Arkansas by chance? My little brother is an architect and GC. His favorite cabinet, staircase, molding and custom furniture guy is from Arkansas and he is almost impossible to get without several months notice and otherwise sounds similar.
Small town OK. Designer jeans, worn boots, late 30s early 40s, works with a great painter whose English is good and who is a bit quirky. Showed me some minor tricks. Baking powder with stain works wonders on small nail holes:>)
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Old 08-05-2016, 12:14 PM
 
16,931 posts, read 2,174,066 times
Reputation: 27920
Quote:
Originally Posted by BigDGeek View Post
I didn't say they're too expensive for me to use. I said they're too expensive to be used widely in new home construction so you get new builds with tons of pre-fab flat pack cabinetry, badly mitred crown moulding, etc.

I have trouble finding good skilled quality labor but it's because I don't know who these people are and I have to rely on other peoples' advice. Most of the time when I ask for recommendations, I get a list of people NOT to use. Not because they charged too much, but because they did crappy work.

Luckily between my husband and I we can handle a lot of work that other people may not be able to do, but there are things neither of us know how to do (or would want to handle). In those cases we call in a pro. We're more than capable of tearing out built-ins and fixing the walls where they were attached, replacing fixtures/outlets/light switches, replacing faucets, garbage disposals, toilets, etc. We get pros to fix the HVAC, anything having to do with gas, etc. Y'know, common sense stuff.

Right now we don't need a carpenter but it'd be nice to have a phone number or two in the virtual Rolodex in case we ever do.
Folks like that do not answer their phone. They get asked to please do a job through the grapevine. Next you want quotes? SO quietly pulled out cash. I asked for three additional shelves for the book case. They were at the front door a couple of weeks later. That was it. The trim alone runs around 20/ft.
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Old 08-05-2016, 01:38 PM
 
Location: Shady Drifter
2,444 posts, read 2,135,020 times
Reputation: 4098
Quote:
Originally Posted by Threestep View Post
Folks like that do not answer their phone. They get asked to please do a job through the grapevine. Next you want quotes? SO quietly pulled out cash. I asked for three additional shelves for the book case. They were at the front door a couple of weeks later. That was it. The trim alone runs around 20/ft.
Those people can shove off. Just because you happen to be good at your job doesn't excuse you from standard business norms like answering your phone or giving a customer a quote.
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Old 08-18-2016, 09:52 AM
 
Location: Dallas
45 posts, read 63,900 times
Reputation: 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by LeagleEagleDFW View Post
Those people can shove off. Just because you happen to be good at your job doesn't excuse you from standard business norms like answering your phone or giving a customer a quote.
I can see your point, but small operations may spend more time answering the phone and giving quotes than actually working. And if they expand, their quality of work may decrease. To work through word of mouth isn't automatically a bad thing.
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Old 09-07-2016, 10:23 PM
 
Location: The Windy City
5,332 posts, read 3,935,155 times
Reputation: 4667
I moved in to my apartment in Arlington in April. My rent is around $925 for a 1br (varies depending on water and sewer charges). I checked the apartment's website today and the same unit is currently renting for $1025 (which will be at least $1050 after water and sewer). It's freaking ridiculous that rent has gone up over $100 in less than a year. My complex was built in the 80s and is really nothing special. It's not fancy, but not run down either. Maybe it's the time of year causing the price shift, but you'd think that spring and early summer is a more popular time to move than late summer and early fall.

At this rate, I'll need a raise of at least $1,500 every year to be able to afford to live in this area and maintain my current lifestyle. We all know this will never happen.
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Old 09-07-2016, 10:41 PM
 
Location: Shady Drifter
2,444 posts, read 2,135,020 times
Reputation: 4098
Dude. Just move. You don't like it here, but guess what - enough people do that your rent is going to continue to rise. Why? Because they can. It's never going to be Manhattan levels of rent, but the days of cheap D/FW area rents are long past. It's the way it is - if you want cheap rents, go back to a small town.
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Old 09-07-2016, 10:48 PM
 
13,771 posts, read 4,061,983 times
Reputation: 8272
Quote:
Originally Posted by LeagleEagleDFW View Post
Those people can shove off. Just because you happen to be good at your job doesn't excuse you from standard business norms like answering your phone or giving a customer a quote.
It might be a good idea for them to answer their phone because they obviously are charging less than the market rate, but that's their decision.
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