With the bump-out gone, we’ve decided that the next project is to replace the front porch. Given the state of the house, this may seem a bit out of order, but as usual there’s a method to our madness. While we have a lot of work to do on the interior, we want to finish the exterior of the house so that we don’t wind up with (more) water damage on the inside, especially on new stuff we’re putting in. The top of that list is replacing the roof and fascia (we don’t have soffits). Before we can do that we want to take the hips off the gables, so we can put a bigger window in the front of the attic and a door at the back (fire code egress requirements). The new front porch will be covered, meaning it’s going to have its own roof and fascia. So the first reason to do the porch first is that it means we can get all of the roofing and fascia done at the same time. If we follow that on with the second floor windows and back door, we can also do the trim, siding, gutters, and downspouts, which would go a long way to improving our life in the basement, just from a humidity standpoint. Once the outside of the house is done, I can go back to the second floor and level the subfloor, replace the attic joists, and frame out the structure, walls, attic stairs, and so on.

House rendering with porch

The other advantage to replacing the porch first is that will work as scaffolding on the front of the house, where we have four very large windows to replace. By building the ceiling frame of the porch before the roof line, we’ll have a flat platform from which to rebuild the second floor bay, which uses the same decorative sheathing as the first floor and needs to be rebuilt before it can accommodate the new windows. Plus while we’re at it we can take off all the siding on the front of the house and the flashing details of the windows can be done correctly. So, in short the plan for the porch is to work our way up, building and taking off siding as we go. When the windows are replaced, we’ll finish the porch roof framing, and then get all of the roofing, trim, fascia, and siding done at once.

With that worked out, the first step to building the new porch (other than planning) is to take down the old one!


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