6+ years ago, my client asked me to put some bracing on the existing stairs to his garage apart in the Heights area of Houston. He asked me to do what I thought was necessary [what I thought was necessary, then, was tearing down the stairs and building a new one…but that would have to wait] so after a brief discussion of what I thought would make the unit at-least a bit more stable, I install some cross-bracing, brushed on a bit of paint, and moved on.
Now, years later, Danny sends me an email wanting to discuss replacing the unit; we would have to work around his tenant’s schedule if possible–to coordinate my efforts with the tenant’s vacation so as to have the apartment vacant while I dismantle and replaced the stairs. In the end, it went very well, but being that the vacation coincided with the second week of the World Cup [and began on a Wednesday and not a Monday like I had hoped], it didn’t get off to a good start. The tenant decided to stay in on the first day of construction–to watch Germany vs. South Korea rather than head out of town.
The slow start quickly put me in a time crunch; I hadn’t constructed a project of this size, solo, in a number of years–so it was a good learning curve for me in all ways but especially in those first few days. I had two days to remove the old stairs, replace a considerable amount of siding, and install some basic stairs before the tenant returned. Thanks to a greater degree of patience, planning, and deliberate action that seems to come with decades of experience but also from now being in my 40’s, I did it. I had to put the old stairs back in place for the weekend, which after demolition, was a challenge in itself, but it made the apartment accessible and allow the project to go forward following the weekend. I, the customer, and the tenant were all very satisfied with the project in the end. Here’s to new challenges ahead.