Under the kitchen is a traditional Cape Cod cistern basement, really just a round hole in the ground, generally 8 or 9 feet across, to house the furnace. Ours is “accessible” if that’s the right word though a hatch in the floor of a closet off the kitchen, on top of which the vacuum usually sits. I remember exactly the same arrangement at my grandparents’, just a half mile down Main Street.
Under the rest of the house, the joists sit up above a dirt floor. “Crawl space” is way to generous a description. The HVAC guys have been sliding along on their belies under there for the last few days, running air ducts for heat and AC.
Prior to this the house was heated, only on the first floor and through forced hot water. It’s a nice kind of heat, but the baseboard radiator units take up a lot of room and don’t look great, and it doesn’t solve the AC requirement.
It’s tough for these guys to run the ductwork. Hot and dirty work. But the net is we’re close to having the first floor covered. Upstairs will be a different approach. We’ll put in an air handler where the old bathtub sat as we are pushing out a wall for a new bathroom, and the ductwork will run through the attic. Tight up there too, but a walk in the park compared to under the house.
Speaking of upstairs, the girls’ bedrooms are painted and in the middle of being furnished. So we now have a total of three rooms done up there with two more to go in addition to the bathroom.