This project was certainly not something we could tackle alone.
During the purchasing process we decided we needed to seek out a building company. We needed someone who shared our passion for bringing historic properties back to life. We wanted the renovations to be sympathetic to the original character of the building and it’s features while transforming it into an idyllic place for us (and in time, hopefully others) to spend relaxing and memorable holidays. A small ask!
We were starting from scratch, working from London so our only option was to start googling Irish building companies. We found three that appeared to be actively involved in conservation work and whose experience and outlook appeared to be a good match for our needs. I contact contacted them all to see if we could arrange a meeting on site at the cottage to get some initial costs together and to help us figure out how realistic the project might be (or whether we were just crazy!!).
The first one was booked up for ten months (!) and would not be able to take on a new project until the following June.
The next one was going to charge a fairly substantial initial fee for a feasibility study, which may have been ok if we actually owned the property, but we were obviously trying to keep costs down at this stage (knowing that there was a costly road ahead!).
The third company we contacted bounced back with keen interest in the project, we had a phone call to discuss and the friendly builder called Tom offered to meet us on site.
In August 2015 we met Tom at the cottage and talked through the issues from the survey, our hopes and fears! He was very supportive and shared our passion and vision for the cottage. He also said ‘if we didn’t buy the cottage he knew someone else who would!’.