This Old House | Watertown House [S20, E1] | Full Episode

27July 2019


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In this episode:The show kicked off its 20th anniversary with the renovation of a sprawling 1886 Queen Anne-style Victorian in the Boston suburb of Watertown, Massachusetts.

Our Watertown Victorian finally got her paint and paper, but not until seven months of intensive surgery had come to a close. Problems that had been apparent from the start--crumbling chimneys, a wet basement, paint-caked siding, antiquated systems, a confusing floor plan--were quickly joined by nasty surprises. A sodden back lawn that couldn't grow a lawn. Flues in need of new linings. An optimum floor plan reconfiguration that called for removal of a chimney, two fireplaces, and all three staircases. Inadequate insulation. And the termites, whose visits over the years necessitated costly sill replacement and the removal and reconstruction of all three porches.

Costs added up as quickly as the days went by, yet through their nervous sweat homeowners Christian and Sue remained committed to doing right by their new house. They understood the importance of getting the fundamentals right, so that the trimmings would have a proper base. As Christian said, "I'm going to be carried out of here feet first, so I want a house that will last a lifetime—and then some."

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This Old House is the No. 1 multimedia home enthusiast brand, offering trusted information and expert advice through award-winning television, a highly regarded magazine, and an information-driven website. This Old House and Ask This Old House are produced by This Old House Ventures, LLC and are presented on PBS by WETA Washington, DC.

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