In the second edition of CharlotteFive Home Tours, Virginia transplant Andy Schools, the guitarist for local ambient band Bombardier, shows us around his fixer-upper 1960’s ranch home in Wildwood. Not familiar with the neighborhood? Located just minutes from the U.S. National Whitewater Center, Wildwood is receiving more attention as another one of Charlotte’s ever-evolving neighborhoods.
We asked Schools five questions about his home.
How did you end up here?
“I ended up moving to Charlotte from Virginia for a new job almost two years ago. I had a couple friends here already so I knew that would make transitioning to a new place easier. I did not have to go through the pains of making all new friends and being a stranger in a new town.
“I originally moved to NoDa and rented an apartment. I loved that neighborhood but my needs to play music and create outweighed being able to walk to some of my favorite bars, so I bought a home in the Wildwood area.”
Favorite thing about your neighborhood?
“I love my neighborhood because it has a good blend of old and new families. I have a mid-’60s ranch that was a little bit of a fixer-upper but it’s been a rewarding project. The demand for housing is so great that when I was searching for a home, most properties would be under contract or accept an offer the same day at times. It was a little stressful until I decided to find a property that would scare off a few people and needed a little sweat equity.
“The biggest perk of my neighborhood is the big yard and not being crammed on top of anyone. I can play music loud and I have not had the first complaint in over a year.”
Favorite/least favorite parts of your home?
“My favorite part of my home is the two living room spaces, so I have one to entertain and one I converted into a space for playing music. I also love my yard and the pool that came with it.
“My least favorite part are the outdated bathrooms. I have to completely gut the main one eventually and then the pink nightmare I stare at will be gone for good.”
What advice would you give on in-home entertaining?
“Just make your home feel welcoming and put yourself into it. I like to entertain so I have a dedicated bar space and a beer fridge for when my friends come over. I also have extra space for people to crash in case they have a few too many.”
What has been the most innovative DIY project you’ve done?
“I had three big projects I tackled the first year. I had someone put a new liner in the pool and converted it to a salt water system (the best decision). I put a privacy fence around the pool and property just to feel comfortable and not have the neighbors seeing every little thing happening.”
“The biggest project was turning a half bath into a three quarter so we would have two showers in the house. That took several weeks and I did most of it myself, with the help of friends and family. It turned out great. It’s amazing what you can learn when you have to.”
Photos: Andy Schools