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Leaving your mark as a builder

November 20th, 2013 by Berit Griffin

Reading the stories of other people’s home renovations is fascinating — at least for the non-pros among us. For building and remodeling professionals, it’s all in a day’s work. But for homeowners thinking of remodeling, reading from someone else’s been-there-done-that perspective can be very educational.

Apartment Therapy has a series called Renovation Diaries, where homeowners write weekly posts about a particular remodeling project–mostly kitchens. They cover their current setup, inspiration and regular check-ins on the project before revealing the final space and budget breakdown. Pretty interesting stuff!

One of the current bloggers, Dan, is redoing his Boston kitchen. His latest post on flooring has a very interesting titbit:

“As he was pulling up floorboards in the back corner of the kitchen, Gregg came across a 1944 penny sitting on the subfloor directly beneath a floorboard. Apparently carpenters and other tradesmen used to hide brand new pennies in out-of-the-way places – beneath a bathtub, behind a medicine cabinet, under a floorboard – to mark the date of their work. This means that the last time the kitchen floorboards were pulled up was 1944. I looked through the old building permit records for the property, which are available online, and discovered that the building was split into apartments in the mid-1940s. So the 1944 date makes sense. This was probably when the room was converted to a kitchen for the new second floor apartment. Hiding a new penny during a renovation project is a pretty cool tradition and it’s something Gregg wanted to continue. So he put the 1944 penny back where he found it and added a shiny new penny along with a note containing our names and the actual date.”

What a fun tradition! Have you ever heard of this? If so, have you ever come across something like a penny that a previous builder left? And do you leave your mark, whether that’s in the form of a coin or something else?


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