Moved In on Saturday and Out on Sunday!!!

What a whirlwind of a weekend. We moved out of our rental home in General Villamil Playas on Saturday morning. The truck driver arrived at 8am sharp, with us completely packed and on the road by 9am. The last two houses we rented were fully furnished so our total household belongings were mostly boxes and a very few pieces of furniture.

This is the archway you drive through leaving Guayas and arriving into Manabi Provincia.

We had a driver, Eric drive us to San Clemente and we arrived almost two hours ahead of the truck. Just enough time to get a bite to eat and look around our new town.

Joe enjoying a refreshing Pilsener with lunch.

The truck was unpacked and we were starting to open a few boxes, set up the bedroom when we started turning on faucets we found all of them dripped and the next morning found that the one kitchen sink was not just leaking but dripping into the wall between the bathroom and the kitchen, making a small river out the door to the porch. Oh and the water to the unit was disconnected and we were using water from the cistern. Also, the raised water tank which is made of concrete has seen better days, leaks and looks like chunks of concrete will fall at any given moment.

Now bear in mind we bought a fixer upper and knew it – we had planned on redoing all the electric and plumbing. But being pretty basic folks we somehow thought we could live there with it while it was being upgraded. Not!

Our friend Patricia who is handling the renovations dropped in early Sunday morning and suggested that we move into a rental for a month while her crew did the work we contracted on the house.

It took less than 5 seconds for us to make up our minds that a hot shower and running water were exactly what we needed so we moved out of our home into the rental that morning. Lets count here, moving out of Playas, into Beach Hut, out of Beach Hut into Rental, wow we were exhausted and we did very little of the work in any of these moves. You could not get any more convenient than finding a rental directly across the street from our home. This way we can watch the progress without being in the way of the workers, are available to answer questions or address issues that arise.  Work started bright and early on Monday morning with the demo crew smashing down several walls, removing doors and by Tuesday were already starting on blocking in those doorways. Here are the pictures on move in day!!!

This is the first blocks to be smashed removing this kitchen area completely making this area our salon.

As of 5pm today both doorways have been blocked and completely finished in concrete on the inside and the tile needed to patch the floors where the walls have been removed has been purchased.

We combined two bedrooms into one master bedroom by removing the door to the smaller bedroom and removing the wall between the rooms.

They removed the walls between the two kitchens, removed the one door and blocked and concreted this opening today.

The kitchen sink, tile and pipes were removed from this area to make our salon.

The young woman picture in the center of this photo is Patricia McKinsey who is the coordinator on our job.

This is the front of our home with the one kitchen door removed, almost ready for the concrete covering. Today Pat shopped for the electric and plumbing supplies as we are having both completely redone. I would say that for only the second day of work a great deal of progress has been made. Lets hope everything else goes as smoothly so that we can be in our Beach Hut by month end.

16 thoughts on “Moved In on Saturday and Out on Sunday!!!

    • Lisa, our friend Pat is on the ball, she knew what we wanted done, had priced all the materials, labor etc had her guys on standby to get started as soon as we closed…we closed on Friday they started work on Monday…excellent…can’t wait to have the big stuff done and then we can work on other things as we have the funds. Updating a bathroom should be easy after this, ja ja.. Nancy

  1. Wow, I feel like I was right there! It is incredible how quickly the work is being done and yes — you do not want to live in the mess! Good idea to move and so close, too. Renovations are so messy, but I can already tell the place will be adorable when you are done. I love to see everyone in shorts and sandals; it is cold here in Cuenca! I think you will love the place, really I do. Congratulations on taking your time and finding the perfect place. I am amazed at the progress already! Take care, Patricia
    A cold Pilsener is always a good idea!

    • Hi Patricia, I has been amazing seeing such great progress in just a few days. Thanks for your comments, today’s picture will be of us last evening having a Big Pilsener out by the water while the sun was setting…just excellent! Nancy

  2. Nancy,
    Don’t forget to empty the cistern, give it a thorough cleaning, refill it, and do some preventive maintenance on the pump. This can be done simultaneously with the work going on. Also, from the bottom of all exterior walls to about one foot up, have them use oil-based paint mixed with glue (goma) to prevent the peeling at the base of the walls. If you can get some marine paint for this job, it is the best alternative for wall-erosion that occurs with properties close to the sea. Keep monitoring the aesthetics of their work; I have found that while concrete and brick workers there do a solid build, they are not always neat when they line up tiles or bricks. All the best. Leon

    • Hi Leon, thanks for the cistern advise. The water has been turned off for months (owner has not paid bill since September of last year) so what the workers are using is OLD water and the cistern will be empty by the time the water is turned back on I would think…I will talk to Pat about the oil based paint mixed with glue, as I have never heard of that. By the way we are replacing the pump as it is pretty old, still works but why chance that it will fail next week, do the work now and not have to worry about it for a few years. Their brick work looks excellent to me, of course I am no contractor but the block looks pretty even to the untrained eye. Thanks for your comments, any advise is appreciated as we have never done a rehab on any properties that we have owned…Nancy

  3. Very nice move Nancy & Joe and I wish you a very long happy life there- I will paln to visit you when I come to Manta next–Yusuf

  4. Pingback: Morning Update – Wednesday, July 4, 2012 « South of Zero

    • Mary thanks for re-posting about our little life on your blog. Do you have plans to return for a visit yet? Nancy

  5. I’ve enjoyed reading all of your posts over the past several days, and I appreciate you sharing your stories with those of us who are still in the planning/wishing stages.

    I know you wrote that the plan was always to travel up the coast until you found the perfect place, but I am curious–what made you choose San Clemente over Salinas? I’ve read that the weather is more moderate at the northern beaches than the southern. Did that have something to do with your decision?

    We are going to EC for a scouting expedition, but unfortunately, we will only have the one opportunity to visit and will only have 2 weeks while we’re there. I feel like we could spend 2 weeks just covering the coast, and yet we still need to spend about a week in Cuenca and I hope to get to visit Vilca and Loja for at least a day or two. With limited time and funds, I’m looking for any indications for which beach town we should try to visit since we obviously will not have time to visit them all.

    Thanks for so unselfishly sharing your time. My dream is that within a year or two, I will be able to do the same!


    • David, I guess the best advise I can give you is to sit down and decide what is the most important thing for you in a place to live. The first thing Joe and I did was to come up with our own special wish list. It included some very basic wants from both of us, good inexpensive food supply, nice weather, being able to spend a great deal of time outdoors…these items were more important than almost everything else in our life..then we talked together about the most basic item MONEY – how much we had, how much did we need to live on etc etc…That original list is still with us today because we were realistic in our wish list, we planned our first adventure in Panama around those thoughts and have made those dreams a reality here in Ecuador with the purchase of our little Beach Hut… As to your questions about Salinas VS Clemente it was all about the money…I liked Salinas but I would never have found this house for what we paid, three houses from a really nice beach in Salinas. The list worked for us because we were brutally honest with ourselves and each other about what we really wanted. I hope this helps.. a small suggestion if Ecuador is the spot for you after you make your two week look-see, rent and then take your time and look around the areas that were most impressive to you, don’t buy until you have taken a good look at the areas. It is pretty inexpensive to travel around by bus and hostels and restaurants are cheap as well. Take your time, we have lived in Ecuador for over two years and spend another 3 1/2 in Panama before making our purchase. Thanks for your kind words, I know how difficult the decision is to move out of your country and go to a totally new place, sharing our experiences is like paying back what we have gotten from our travels. Nancy

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