Setting Out Our 2018 Goals

It’s been a while guys! So I took some time Setting Out Our 2018 Goals.

Sometimes the best thing you can do is step aside from something for a period of time, as you will always come back stronger, fresher and with a whole new burst of energy. Over the last few weeks I’ve been feeling a lot more positive and started planning out the year ahead as detailed as a male can. So here’s me Setting Out Our 2018 Goals.

I don’t know if the wife has been rubbing off her positivity on me, or vice versa but we even got to the stage where we wanted to pick up a vlogging camera again and had even been discussing how we missed it. I’m guessing you could say it almost becomes a routine to Vlog things on the regular and having a regular uploading schedule each week. Now I’m not going to say it’s going to be a regimented upload on a Sunday every single week by a certain time without fail, but we will try our best. You can’t ask for much more than that surely!?

Hopefully you’ve taken some time out of your day to watch the video above, and you’ll have a general understanding of where things are heading this year!

The one thing that has always been creeping up is the fact that I’m going to be 30 next year (*in theory*) and I wan’t to start Investing in our families future so to speak. With this being said, one of the key things I’m personally looking forward to a lot is buying another property to renovate and then look to either Sell or Rent-Out.

New House

I’d say that Renovating a house is very stressful when it’s for yourself, however when you can come home each night to a clean house and have a shower it certainly takes the strain off it. On top of that, when you are renovating it for an end goal as opposed to for yourselves, it certainly eases the strains of choosing kitchens, bathrooms, paints, carpets etc. I know when we were renovating our new family home, their was many an argument over furnishings but that’s simply because we both have very different tastes and it was for us. If you know that when it’s finished you will be looking to offer it to the rental market, or re-sale, it turns more into a fluid process than a battle royale.

So with that said, we have placed a few offers, it is early days, but I’ll make sure that you’ll be the first to know when we get something accepted and will be both Blogging & Vlogging the full journey from Day 1 to End.

Another Road Trip

Yes, don’t you just know it! The next big thing when we were Setting Out Our 2018 Goals. Any West Coast Americans, prepare yourself as you’ve got two northerners coming for an adventure! I’d initially planned on a trip to Asia, but according to the wife, it was a fast No! This turned quickly accross to the East Coast of America, more-so in particular Orlando, Florida. Although in the back of my mind I had a feeling this would change again, I didn’t verbalise it and so we set out to start planning our East Coast trip. A few magazines and YouTube videos later Helen started to stumble and it was at this very point she mumbled out the words I’d been waiting to hear “Lets go back to Vegas & LA”

If only I was Vlogging that very second, I’d of loved to see my face as a I secretly squirmed inside like a child, whilst trying not wanting to scream out loud. WE ARE GOING BACK TO VEGAS BABY! Yes it’s true, it’s damn true. If you are reading this how I’m typing it, you’ll probably be feeling my passion and even have some goosebumps crawling up your arms currently.

Less of the rambling, more of the trip. So we are off out to America for a full month, landing in LAX before quickly picking up our car and driving out to Vegas for 4 nights of adult fun. Helen has apparently claimed she will calm down on the Slots this year. We will find out in a few months either way. The only other things we have currently really planned out is a trip to Disneyland California. We’ve ordered a 5 day park hopper pass and that couldn’t of went any smoother. It was ordered from Attraction Tickets Direct and turned up for Valentines Day!

It was picture perfect and as they say it’s sometimes the small things in life that put a smile on your face. So without even knowing it, Attraction Tickets Direct made our Valentines Day magical.

What Else In 2018

Who knows what else 2018 will bring!? We are only around 7 weeks into a 52 week year, and I’m sure there will be many more adventures and exciting things to come over the year. But if you enjoy a dose of Travel and Property mixed in with some male rambling every now and then, you really don’t want to go anywhere else. Bookmark the page, leave a follow on BlogLovin to get the latest updates and I’ll try my best to keep you entertained in the remaining 45 weeks of 2018!

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House Renovation Do’s & Don’ts

Well here we are around 6 months into the Renovation and effectively 3 weeks behind schedule. I think it’s fair to say we have complied a nice list of Renovation Do’s and Don’ts in this time. Anyone that says a Renovation will run to budget and timeframe must be lying I’m telling you!

Over the last 6 months we have been on such a roller coaster of emotions and we have learnt so many lessons that can be applied going forward if we ever decide to undertake anything similar again, but most importantly they are valuable life skills we can use in the future and pass onto our Children. Here goes with our House Renovation Do’s & Don’ts list.

House Renovation Do’s & Don’ts

  1. One of the major things we have noticed along the way so far is don’t just trust and think highly of Tradesmen you employ. One of our downfalls initially was putting to much faith in tradesmen to do what was expected, on time, on budget and to our satisfaction. As much as it pains me to say it, sites like checkatrade and rated people being able to read 50+ reviews and knowing someone is genuine and not a cowboy goes a long way even if it means spending that little bit more on a quote
  2. If you don’t plan everything down to the minute, then expect things to go over timeframe. We initially started the renovation basically going with the flow of things. We have never taken anything on before renovation wise. Watching hundreds of hours of Homes under the Hammer or DIY: SOS can only prepare you for so much. Once you are thrown in the deep end and trying to project manage a full site with tradesmen its a whole new kettle of fish. The best piece of advice I can give, is draw up a Gantt chart to fully manage dates tradesmen are coming in and out. This leads straight onto the 3rd point relating to timings from Tradesmen.
  3. When obtaining a quote get everything in writing. Not only do you want a written quotation (ensure it says Quote and not Estimate) as it’ll give you a more legal foothold if anything does go wrong. Make sure you establish when they can start. Find out how long they expect the job to take. Also, one important thing we’ve came to realise now is find out will waste be removed. Apparently not all tradesmen tidy up after themselves
  4. Where possible I strongly advise not to live in the building whilst renovating. I know for quite a few people this may not be feasible, however you will not believe the amount of dust even the most simplest of tasks can produce. Anything involving bricks, plaster, wood can create an enormous mess in minutes and the last thing you want is your living quarters to be a big dust sheet. The advantage of living elsewhere is being able to lock up at night and go home to a nice clean, warm, well lit house and get a good nights sleep. I can’t even help but think if what we are currently doing would of been even possible had we moved in back when we got the keys last year. We went the whole hog of gutting the complete house to almost rebuilding it from scratch in theory. If we were living their we would of contracted numerous airborne dust related diseases thats for sure.
  5. Following on from point 4, if you aren’t living in the house whilst renovating then make sure you have at least one working plug socket and a large extension lead. A good set of heavy duty work lights for when the dark nights set in. The last thing you need is a kettle! Life is always good when you can make a nice dusty brew and sit back and plan the project with a hot cuppa nescafe.
  6. Enjoy yourself! As ironic as it seems, depending on the size of the Renovation its a once in a lifetime thing. I struggle to see us ever taking on something this big in our lifetime. Unless we stumble accross a pot of gold whilst finishing this renovation it’s going to be our forever home and we are making every last detail work exactly how we want it. Try to imagine yourself having parties, making memories in the house once its renovated. This will help get you through the dark days and keep you laughing rather than crying every week when tradesmen let you down.

We have been Weekly Vlogging our House Renovation. So we already have the best part of 6 months worth of stress and happiness spread over several videos. If you haven’t already feel free to catch up with us on YouTube below:

Even if one person stumbles across this list of House Renovation Do’s & Don’ts and it saves them either time or money then my job here is a success! One major piece of advice me and helen can give whilst doing a Renovation which may seem very cliche is basically Stay Positive. As hard as that phrase will seem when you’ve no electrics or heating and its the middle of winter, it’s for the best and the finish line is always in the distance. It will be hard trying to see light at the end of the tunnel, but stick at it and it’ll be perfect when its complete

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A look back at 2016

I don’t know about yourself, but for me, what a year its been!

Looking back it’s been one heck of a ride. We have been lucky enough to travel to Disneyland Paris more times than I can remember. Getting an Annual Pass for Disney certainly has rewarded itself with plenty of value. Another highlight of the year was our adventures around Europe. So many countries got ticked off the Bucket list and we got to stay in a whole host of amazing properties and hotels accross the continent. A special Birthday arranged by Helen in our very own Hot tub lodge. She really pulled  out all the stops to make me feel like a prince for the weekend!

Best of 2016

I really hope that everyone has an amazing 2017. If you don’t already be sure to catch up with all my daily ramblings on Twitter: @Northerncrumble and Instagram: Northerncrumble

Happy New Year!

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Where has Mr Crumble Been Hiding?

Has Mr Crumble Been Hiding? There’s nothing worse than when you are in full flow of writing blog posts on a regular basis and enjoying things and then you get a big stumbling block. Well, this stumbling block was a fairly positive one, and is finally slowly allowing me to get back to writing regular content again which makes me happy!

If you Subscribe to our YouTube channel you will know exactly whats kept me so busy the last 6 weeks! We finally got the keys to OUR DREAM HOME

You are probably thinking, okay right, but it doesn’t take that long to hire a van and move your furniture over where have you been hiding!? Its not as plain sailing as it sounds, for the last few weeks I’ve literally been at the new house daily gutting it, ripping down walls, stripping wallpaper. You name it, i’ve given it a go! We ripped the whole house back to basis, including the Bathroom and kitchen as you can see. We have a nice Bare house to work our magic on.

Demolished Kitchen

It seems as if every few hours we would be filling up rubble bags and driving to the local skip! One thing I must say, anyone looking at taking on a Renovation project the best thing you can do is Invest in a very large car. Also, these Rubble Bags from eBay have been an absolute god send! Our “Beast” as he is known, has served us so well over the last few weeks. It was going to cost us around £200 a skip and I honestly think we would of easily filled around 3 or 4 skips by now, so by the time we sell Beast in a few months we shouldn’t lose a penny!

One thing I will say, if you haven’t already, catch up on the Weekly Vlogs starting at Weekly Vlog #22

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Is Our Dream House Becoming A Reality?

So if you’re a regular reader you might be a little puzzled by this one. Well in a Nutshell, with three Months of pretty much no sleep, 110% effort daily and squeezing our savings we’ve found our Dream House and placed an offer. If you haven’t already read the previous posts catch up here and here then this post might make a little more sense.

With this said, I’ll throw out my apologies for the lack of blogging over the last few weeks. It’s not that I’ve fallen out of love with writing, I feel like I’ve just been putting all my efforts into this dream and it’s slowly becoming more a reality by the day.

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