The home-building process is not without stress. Not by a long shot. The dollar amounts can be overwhelming at times and the progress seemingly extra-slow. Lists are made, priorities are noted, and items are eliminated. Costs are checked. Timelines are pushed back. Calls are made. Emails are sent. Selections are poured over. Meetings are set. Meetings are re-scheduled. Plans are studied, re-worked, and studied again. There are so many moving pieces and while we’ve done a simpler version of this rodeo once before, we are certainly not experts. We knew we were signing up for a lot of work when we did this, and I think sometimes from the outside the idea of building a home seems luxe and rose-colored. We know we are blessed to be going through this process…but there are definitely two sides to the experience!
Thoughts on Finances:
Sometimes I think, it must be so amazing to walk into an existing house, make an offer, and be done. There is no guessing game about what the rates will be months from now when you close and no magical options being dangled in front of you that of course you drool over and want to add to the growing budget. You just know the price and what you’re paying, that day, and it’s done! With building, you know the price point of your home plan when you start out, but of course the elected and the unplanned things add up. Time costs real money, too. With the multiple delays we’ve had, knowing that we are adding months of interest to our construction loan (cha-ching!) and now month-to-month rent at our apartment (more cha-ching!) the focus is more than ever on the bottom line as we move forward.
Thoughts on Communication:
While yes, it is a CUSTOM build this time around, we realize we are probably extra-involved compared to many other home-building clients. We also know that this home is the ONLY one we are building, and one of several in a portfolio for the builder. The pace and quality of communication isn’t what we expected in this very hands-on process, and it’s not what we would feel comfortable with for our OWN clients as business-owners ourselves, but it seems to be on par with what we hear from others in this industry and local market. Ultimately, we chose the team we did for their talent and finished product, and continue to be impressed with the quality of the work and the end product…we just have to GET to it! We are doing our best to roll with the punches in the interest of crossing this finish line sooner than later.
So after womp-womping you with the less-than-awesome parts of building (just trying to keep it real!), let’s get back to the fun stuff. It’s been a little more than a month since our last update on the build, and several things have been accomplished in recent weeks. Despite some rain and wind that delayed progress prior to the roof (finally!) being built, we can now move forward with hopefully fewer hiccups, since weather is no longer a factor in timeline.
We selected our exterior paint color for the shake and siding portions of the house. It’s a Sherwin-Williams color, “Cyberspace”, 7076. With white trim all around the house and grey stonework on much of the front, along with some timber accents and a copper accent roof, we’re excited to see all the colors and textures come together. I love THIS example of Cyberspace as an exterior color.
We completed our electrical walk-through (above) to note exactly where we had any special requests for outlets, or hard-wiring of certain fixtures. One more step checked off the list so progress could continue! Page did an informal walk-through with both the HVAC and plumbing crew to note a few things, and those rough ins are now complete. Windows are in and shingles are being installed. It’s such a relief to see things happening at a visible progress pace!
To save a little cash, Page repeated his performance as low-voltage electricity runner and installed speaker wire and ethernet cables, himself, in the main living area and in our master and his office. While the builder would have done this for us, Page actually enjoys thinking through exactly how he wants it, and his labor rate is much cheaper for our bottom line. 🙂
Decisions have been made for all plumbing fixtures. While it’s a really fun part of the process, that darn budget keeps factoring in. Ah if only there were no prices! 😉 Above are a couple of our choices.
I took on the task of narrowing down electrical fixtures to a list of final choices. Given an overall budget that we could spread however we wanted, I pinned, deleted, pinned some more, and eventually put together a spreadsheet of every fixture in the house, and one or more links to products, for Page’s final buy-in. Above are a couple of my favorites that are on their way. The geometric flush-mounts are from Lowe’s and will be in hallway spaces (ta ta, pun intended, to the boob lights from the last house!). The honeycomb pendants will go in our front entry, and the chandelier in the dining space, both from West Elm.
It is during this next stage (drywall) that, to me, it really starts to take shape and feel real. I’m hopeful that with everything closed in now, different crews can overlap and work uninterrupted by weather. The latest deadline is mid-to-late January…depending on when this little person makes his arrival, I’m still holding out hope that it might be after we can move in. More to come!
4 thoughts on “november house update + thoughts on the building process (keeping it real!)”
YAY so glad you had posted again, I’ve been checking every so often for an update. We just got our electrical done this week and our plumbing is in too. I’m struggling to find a beverage fridge for the basement kitchenette that is both functional ( not just for wine but other drinks as well ) and doesn’t cost an arm and a leg. We are also saying “ta-ta” to the infamous nipple lights as we call them 🙂 and going with a squared flush mount in rubbed bronze for all our hardware and plumbing fixtures are in that finish. I purchased some of our kitchen appliances last week ( fridge, wall oven/microwave combo and dishwasher ) all there is left is the cooktop ( it was not on sale so I’m holding out for a while ) and the beverage fridge. Again, it was great to read your update and “connect” with someone who is going through the same process as us. Your home is looking fantastic and I can’t wait to see the finished product.
I remember so much of this when we built our house! It is two steps forward, one step back! Have you seen the movie the Money Pit? it is a must see for home builders/renovators. (I might have recommended that already…sorry!)
Kate, I’m behind on replies — but LOVE hearing the latest from your end! I agree – it’s so fun to connect with someone who “gets” it and is living it at the same time! 🙂
We LOVE The Money Pit — ha!!