More Stashed Cash


So, this is my entry hall, where you will go into the living room. Someone said she’d like heated floors. The contractors replied, “We love doing those,” and got to it. At the moment the living room has no floor at all. When the shutters are open, you look from the floor of the basement right to the ceiling. In this photo of course you just see a dark spot that eats money. The finish floor of the entry is long gone, along with about a foot of subfloor. On the wall, out of range of the camera, is a construction detail; paper is so easy to lose, after all. The detail shows layers and layers of waterproofing, insulation, heating coils, concrete subfloor and, finally, the finish floor. When the guys are done, expect to see pretty limestone tiles with little black cabuchon insets. Once the finish trim is in and the walls are painted, the entry should look very 19th century, as if we did nothing. However even on the coldest day, you will feel nice and toasty warm.

Speaking of dark spots that eat money, we drilled a hole behind the house, the better to estimate the amount of water available for the geothermal system. It turns out that there is plenty of water, much more than we need, even now, in the dryest part of the year. This means we can go ahead with the geothermal refurbishment — we don’t have to build one from scratch. At last we have identified a way to save some money.

3 thoughts on “More Stashed Cash

  1. I am all warm and toasty thinking about the floors and the gorgeous result that awaits upon completion!


    1. Yes, it will be cheap to run. The payback compared to electric radiators is about three years. Nobody runs a whole house on electric radiators, though. The more usual point of comparison is what, fuel oil? It freaks me out to even think about having a big tank of flammable fuel in my basement. I think the payback period on that is about 8 years. Geothermal heat even compares favorably to pellets, though I forget the payback period on that. They told me. Between the payback period, the unsightly pellet silo out in the back garden and the sheer hassle of waiting around for that annual delivery — it’s France, they never show up when you’re home — the geothermal would have been a no-brainer, even if I hadn’t had the legacy system to tap into.

      The second option would have been an air compressor or the pellets. I think they were nudging me towards pellets as a fallback.

      The downside is the high initial cost. If you can handle that, it definitely pays off down the road.


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