The most immediate cause for the remodel was this last winter. We were cold. Not East Cold, but California cold. Bad enough. These places weren’t built for any sort of weather.
One might ask, why didn’t you turn up the heat. Well, basically, we don’t have any; just a little gas fireplace made mostly for decorative purposes.
And then in the ceiling an electrical grid of some kind, put in back in the day when the supply of electricity (1973) was supposed to be infinite according to the nuclear industry.
We never could get that grid to work; or let’s say the only way to get it to work was to turn it on full blast. Then the heat, radiating down from the ceiling was intolerable; one felt like a cupcake baking in an oven.
So that left us with the decorative gas fireplace and multiple layers of shirts and sweaters.
After that winter, we knew we had to replace the windows. They are single paned and framed with aluminum. If you put your hand on one, you could feel the cold.
So we got Milgard windows (the only kind approved by the condo association for retrofitting). We got super-duper ones, dual panes, and with a tint that cuts down on the sort of sun light that fades things. They are so energy efficient that we will qualify for a 1500 dollar tax rebate from the federal government.
They are in now. They look pretty cool. We have a number of neighbors ask, where did you get those? Turns out we were not the only ones who felt the cold this last winter.
Also we are getting the decorative heater replaced with a heater that heats. It has a fan and can you believe a remote control thermostat. So we can sit on our asses on the sofa and turn the heater up and down. Or off.