Not my porch...not even close. Photo: Martha

(N.B. I'm having lots of formatting issues with Blogger today. I'm getting no new paragraphs so I'm tweaking in HTML.)

Two weeks ago, The Architects sent the plans for my porch addition/partial exterior renovation off to three contractors to get bids. Each of the contractors came by to see the project and two of the three bids have come in.

The first is about $21,000 higher than the budget I had set. Disappointing but not horrible. I had totally forgotten about painting the house so that extra cost is about half of the overage.

The second bid is $37,000 higher my budget. That's a big difference and that's a big problem.

The third has been promising since last Thursday that it's coming "tonight."

I got a little smug and told The Architects I was going to call a few companies and get a few of my own bids. That was four days ago and none of the contractors have returned my calls.

This is a big dose of reality.

So now I have to decide if the project gets put off or if I reduce the scope of the project.

Note to anyone thinking of buying an old house and renovating it: If at all possible, hire a contractor to look at the house and give you an idea what things might cost.