Through a limited experience with diy drywall on a Habitat for Humanity project, I knew that drywall was an awkward and messy project. Originally, I only wanted to remove the old drywall on the garage-side of the shared wall that split the garage from the guest house. This was to help the professional electricians run new electric lines, as well as to add insulation. But as I’ve learned, it quickly grew from a “simple” job, to basically stripping 90% of the drywall from the guest house.
We were thankful and lucky that the guest house already had a fully-functioning bathroom, complete with tub/shower, toilet and sink. And while the garage/guest house had working plumbing, electric and water, we weren’t too confident of the quality and workmanship of the electric and water feed. The sewer/plumbing turned out to be installed correctly so that was one thing we didn’t need to worry about. The electric and incoming water was another story.
One of the things that attracted us to our home was the fact that it had a detached two-car garage with a small, 250 square-foot room. From the little we gathered (and from some of the mail we still get) this room was used as a home-based massage business. The small room had its own entrance through the backyard, another into the garage, a kitchenette, and a full bathroom with closet.
The little room hadn’t been used for a while and had become a dark, dirty glorified storage area. While it had functioning water, electricity, gas and sewer lines, only the sewer had been done correctly. The kitchenette cabinets were sturdy but outdated, the tiny gas stove was ancient and no longer needed, and the entire concrete floor had been covered in a thick, uneven, and rough material. It attracted grime like a magnet and was impossible to clean due to its texture and irregularity.
We wanted to convert it into a nice living space for guests, grandparents and perhaps to rent it out during one of Tucson’s biggest events: Tucson Gem and Mineral Show. We didn’t have a big budget and I really wanted to do as much of the work as possible, leaving some of the more complicated work to professionals (electrical and some plumbing).
Over the next few blogs, I’ll go into more detail on all the steps we took, the problems we found and how we wrapped everything up into a fantastic little guest room.