Photo Essay: OMG, They’ve Torn Down Our Family Home in China!

Okay, so the headline is a little exaggerated…but it’s true. Our family home in the countryside has been torn down.

Still, it’s for a positive reason — the family wants to rebuild the home. Fair enough.

I never expected to have such an up close and personal experience with home renovations — to actually witness the destruction of a house while I was walking out the door. (Yes, true story — I had to dodge old wooden planks raining down from the roof the very morning they began tearing down the house.)

So here’s a behind-the-scenes look into what it takes to tear down a countryside home in China. Or at least, in the China I know:


The morning when it all began, bright and early.


OMG, the roof is almost gone!


Once they razed the home to the ground, all that remained was this motley assortment of rocks. Whoa.


And this is all that’s left of the home I once knew.

Good thing we spend most of our time in Hangzhou, because the renovations will get messy and noisy in the next few weeks.

I’ll keep you posted. 🙂

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14 thoughts on “Photo Essay: OMG, They’ve Torn Down Our Family Home in China!

  • May 13, 2016 at 6:52 pm

    Wow! It’s a total makeover! At least it was knocked down because you wanted and not because you were forced to… which is very common here!

  • May 14, 2016 at 12:50 am

    from the look of the first picture, the house did not look that old. is it because the family want a modern home with all the modern amenity ???
    i don’t want to pry, will it cost more than rmb 200,000 to rebuild the home ???

    • May 15, 2016 at 7:40 pm

      I think the house is maybe over 20 or 25 years old. But it did seriously need an upgrade for a lot of amenities.

      Not sure how much it will cost — I haven’t been involved in those conversations.

  • May 14, 2016 at 3:27 am

    Must be better building in future.

  • May 14, 2016 at 8:10 am

    Do you have new house plan to show?

  • May 14, 2016 at 11:26 am

    Good thing it’s not a forced destruction! My in-laws’ old house was torn down, but not because they wanted it to be torn down. They did get a government assigned apartment and seem to like the conveniences of running water and floor heating in winter, but they were still sad to leave the old house.

    • May 15, 2016 at 7:41 pm

      Wow, I cannot imagine that. It’s nice the government provided them with a new apartment, but apartment living is so drastically different from having a house of your own. I can imagine they miss it.

  • May 16, 2016 at 9:01 pm

    Didn’t your in-laws just recently over the last couple years build an extension for you and John?
    (I can’t word it correctly, but they built room for you and John to live there for a while, right?)

    Is that part being kept?


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