Occupancy inspection. If I pass, I can start moving in and really start getting to work. If I don't pass, then I'll have a list of things that an inspector needs me to do before I can move in. I think I'll pass, or maybe conditionally pass, but there are some house situations that toe the line between "OK" and "not OK" pretty hard.
In preparation for tomorrow's inspection, I spent today buttoning some things up and then cleaning the floor, which still smells like dog urine.
Dog urine was not the only animal-related issue I dealt with today. Here's the story...
...I haven't spent much time in the house's basement. There are 2 reasons for this: 1, there's plenty to do on the main floor and 2, the basement is sorta creepy.
The basement in the house was "finished" some number of years (or decades) ago, but it's the kind of "finished" that looks to have been a DIY job done by somebody with modest skills. It's chopped up into a few different rooms, including a full bathroom that may or may not be to code, a room where some number of dogs were undoubtedly kept against their will, and then a big open area with a few small mechanical rooms off of it. The dog room has an elevated plywood floor, the rest of the floor is tile. Most of the basement has a suspended ceiling.
Yesterday I had a nightmare of a time trying to swap out a regular outlet for a GFCI outlet in the kitchen, which meant about 1,000 trips to the circuit breaker panel. On one of my many trips to the panel I noticed how gross many of ceiling tiles were in the big open area.
The big open area is underneath the kitchen and as is often the case in super old homes, there's no subfloor under the first floor flooring. There's floor joists and a tongue and groove pine floor, that's it. So, anytime something got spilled in the kitchen, or if a mess was made loading the dishwasher or doing dishes, etc., the liquid usually ended up on the ceiling tiles below. As a result, many of the tiles were stained and had turned to something, essentially, that was the consistency of applesauce.
I felt like they were something that would catch an inspector's eye, so I decided to remove the really nasty ceiling tiles with the big orange stains. I'd been down this road before, many times, so I sort of knew what I was getting into. Still, I was hoping for the best.
I tried pushing a tile upwards so I could remove it, and 2 bad things happened: I realized that the ceiling was basically right up against the floor joists above and there wasn't any wiggle room to remove the tiles like one typically might, and a shower of mouse poop rained down on me.
It's like somebody installed the tiles as they installed the grid, which is definitely not how it's supposed to be done and makes removing the tiles impossible without breaking them. That wouldn't be so bad except that breaking anything is sort of an uncontrolled activity, and when you're standing under who knows how much animal poop, it'd be nice to control things a bit.
I spent about 10 minutes trying to figure out a way - without dismantling the entire basement ceiling - to remove the few select tiles I wanted to remove without breaking everything, but there wasn't any way to do it. So I grabbed an already broken ceiling tile and yanked it to the floor.
With it came a ridiculous amount of acorns and mouse poop, about half of which caught me on the way to the ground. I sucked it up and kept going; this wasn't a job that could be stopped once it was started. Another tile came down, and with it, more of the same acorn and poop shower. Then, on ceiling tile #3, I got this:
Like I said before, I knew what I was getting into and I felt like, knowing the condition of the house and how the people before me lived, this was a possibility. I don't know how a house with 6-10 dogs also ended up being infested with mice, but it was.
Another tile or two later, another mouse fell from the sky. When it was all said and done, I ended up borderline needing a scoop shovel to clean up the mess that was made on the floor, but the grossest of the ceiling tiles are gone and the ceiling is still otherwise intact.
The silver lining in all of this is that I made a pretty cool discovery in the basement ceiling; I'll tell y'all about that next time...