Monday, June 17, 2013

Out of Hiding...

Hi RH Blog Family!  I know I am such a bad blogger but the past few months have been crazy busy for me.  The new year is always a very productive time for me at work and with a new home to look after, trying to get into a new routine with the house and being a little further away from things like my son's preschool, my gym, my office - it takes quite a bit of adjusting. 

So far we are enjoying the house.  We had quite a few mishaps out of the gate (which I will share later) but all and all we are really enjoying the space.  Everyone told me it would be a lot of work keeping up with the new place and in the words of some of the kids I coach "You ain't never lied" :) 

We hosted our House Warming which we deemed an open house so friends could come and go all day long as well as a Graduation Party for my sister who recently graduated from George Mason University with a BSN.  This place has been a revolving door with friends and family here just about every weekend since we closed of 3/15... but I'm happy to have a place to entertain comfortably. 

The to-do list is much bigger than the done list - but I'm looking forward to the summer because things slow down a bit for me at work so I'll have a little time to focus on the things I'd really like to accomplish around here and finish the DIY projects that I've started. 

One of the items that was at the top of our list was completing our son's room first so that 1) he moved out of the convertible crib to toddler day bed contraption 2) he felt like he really had his own space in this new house 3) he felt more like a big boy as a 3 almost 4 year old.  He is so proud of his "big boy room" and shows it to everyone that comes by... more than once.  

Here are some pics of his room; before and after. 

Before - And I soooo regret not having ceiling fixtures installed.  That is on the to do list.

He insisted on helping us paint... In his Christmas PJs

After - Ikea Brimness Four Drawer Dresser in Black

Ikea Malm Platform Bed in Black & Target Circo Bedding & Rug
Ikea Lack Side Table in High Gloss White & Mammut Chair

Robot Portraits from Google Images - and enlarged at Kinko's with Ikea frames. 
I'm gathering more photos of the place and will be back soon to share our experiences from closing, the 30 day review and everything in between.  I have so much catching up to do and look forward to reading your posts as well. 

Friday, March 15, 2013


Keys in hand and oh so HAPPY!  Just wanted to say thank you all for the constant encouragement and well wishes.  Today is a good day.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Last Rant (I hope)...

One word that would have made this experience totally different for me.....Communication.

I totally get that my case was a differenct case (in terms of loan approval & having to jump through a few more hoops than most buyers).

I get so annoyed by having to seek information.  If you tell me that you'll be in contact on Wednesday or Thursday... and it's Friday.  I expect to hear from you on Friday explaining why I didn't hear from you on Wednesday or Thursday and when you expect to have some "good" information for me.  I don't like to have to ask what happened? It's stressful. 

As an IT Business Analyst, working on multi-million dollar application development projects, if I don't make a deliverable deadline, I make sure that my PM and Developers are aware ahead of time.  I can't wait until a week after a deliverable was due and apologize that I didn't deliver.  I say "this is why I can't deliver on X date, I am awaiting information from X, here are the dependencies, and here is when I expect to deliver".  That is what is expected of me in this line of work. 

Is that too much to ask for????

Having to seek information when I'm sitting here on pins and needles waiting to hear some god news makes my blood boil.

Ready to Close, Over it, Never Again


Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Counter Depth vs. Standard Refrigerator

I was just curious to know if any of my fellow bloggers purchased Counter Depth refrigerators vs. Standard?   Was it aesthetics that lead you to do so?

I was in H.H. Gregg yesterday, shopping for the best deal and I came across a pretty good one.  Well when I gave the Salesman the fridge nook measurements he told us that we'd have some serious counter to fridge over hang if we went with the Standard fridge (something I'd never even thought about) so we might want to consider Counter Depth. 

Are measurements are:
Height = 71 1/4"
Width = 40 3/4"
And to give us an idea of depth my PM said that counter tops are 25 1/4' off of the wall. 

The Salesman showed us a Counter Depth Fridge against a cabinet that was pretty close to our dimensions.. and I did love the look of it being in linewith the Cabinets and Counters but of course it was almost double the price of the fridge we were looking at & much smaller for the price. 

I'm a fan of clean lines so I wanted something Standard like the one pictured. below (French Doors without the ice maker or water on the outside)

Now I'm wondering if Counter Depth is the way to go, or if the overhang will be something I can live with.

Monday, March 4, 2013

I Didn't Think It Would be This Hard!

I just want to close already.  I don't even want to see the house until I have the keys to unlock the door.  Last I spoke with the LO, they were awaiting the appraisal.  3/15 seems like a year from now. 

I'm praying that I get a call this week that I'm good to close. 

Friday, February 22, 2013

Rate Locked, Door Locked, and Now We Wait!

The past couple of months have been so stressful but it seems it's finally coming to an end.  A little upset about the late loan application but hey, as long as the deal is sealed I am OK. 

My PM has been awesome in the past few weeks.  Had my courtesy  "blue tape" walkthrough on Tuesday and my Final walkthrough on Thursday.  I felt bad because I pointed out so many things I wanted fixed, but honestly.. my PM had a better eye for errors because he taped way more items than I did.  Mostly minor things like drywall nick, seams, scrapes & paint but a few poor handling mistakes like scratches in the bathroom vanities & the kitchen cabinets.  I took my mom with me for a second set of eyes and of course she had to nudge me to tape some spots.. I just felt so bad that so many cabinet doors and drawers had to be replaced but hey.. for the amount of money we paid for them.. the installers or whoever damaged them should be more careful.

I also had some pretty deep scratches in my foyer hardwood that will have to be replaced.  PM is on it.  Kudos to him.   

We locked in at 3.25% yesterday and my LO hopes to close on 3/15 or earlier.  I hope so because I just  cant stand to see the house sit not that it's 98% complete. 

Next I'll be compiling my list of things to do in order of priority.  I can't wait to get in and start to decorate. 

I'll upload pics when I'm officially closed.  :)

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Furniture Choices..

We finally selected the Living Room & Basement Furniture.  It was such a blessing to win $2,000 from Rooms to Go.. Here is what we chose.

Going for a Gray & Yellow Color Scheme in the Living Room.  I couldn't get with the purple pillows but I really loved the Gray so I'll have the pillows reupholstered once I find a print that I really love.

Here;s my Inspiration for the Living Room

Here's the Basement Section & Ottoman.  We're going for a Modern Twist since this will more than likely be the area where we hang out the most. 

Add caption

The Home Stretch...

I have been so bad about posting lately... Please forgive me.  So much has happened since my last post.  My home is absolutely BEAUTIFUL.. I am so in love with it and can't wait to get those keys in my hand.   Hopefully my closing wont be delayed but remember my post about having to use a broker for my loan... well that is no longer true, my loan is back with NVR but I'm also back in the middle of the paperwork shuffle.   Longgggg story about the bad broker deal but I'll give you details in another post.  I just wanted to share some pictures and stay positive that NVR will get the loan app through underwriting in time to still close on 2/25.  I'm remaining optimistic and faithful. 

I told myself that today would be my last time visiting the house until Pre-Settlement on 2/21.  I want to leave something to the imagination and there is basically nothing else to be done except landscaping, cleaning and making everything look pretty.  

I think our Red Door will be painted this afternoon..  Can't wait to see it.

Wow!  We have a lot of side and back yard to cut.
Deck with a nice little view of Cosbys Lake
And a whole lot of grass to grow!
Hardwood in the Foyer, Mud Room & Powder Room.

Love it!
Dining Room from Foyer

Dining Room from Kitchen
Stove has been just sitting there for a while... Not sure why?

Basement Hall & Unfinished Bathroom where that door is.
Basement!  I think this is my favorite part of the house.
Bathroom Vanity ... and not really feeling the white vanity top.
In My Opinion the shower enclosure is hideous.  I'd prefer a tile floor and seamless glass shower. 

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

I Got Called to The Office...

Not really, but it felt like it.  I got a call that some of the things that I posted on the blog, that were giving me heartburn, were bought to my PM's attention.  A little awkward but I guess its only fair, RH is really looking out for their reputation. 

My PM took the time out to call me and address each issue line by line.  In his defense, I felt bad because I hadn't addressed the issues with him at the time of the post but he definitely beat me too it.  Had a nice little walk through today and he eased all of my fears. 

I basically laid it out as any person new to this would.  This is my first home purchase, first time building a home, I've heard some good stories about RH and I've also heard some horror stories.. At the end of the day, I don't want to be stuck with any "new construction issues".  I've read so many blogs, reviews, or heard first hand accounts and ssomething that may look minor to someone in this business, looks like the biggest mistake to me.  Please excuse my fear but I thinks it only natural.  Out of the gate, I had a few issues that sent me straight into panic mode and as I get closer to the closing date, the jitters keep growing and growing. 

Nonetheless, I feel a lot better today.  Everything I pointed out was addressed and will be taken care of. 

My home looks BEAUTIFUL, the more I see it, the more I love it.  As of today I have

Fixtures Installed
Cabinets Installed
Kitchen Tile Complete
Master Bathroom Time Complete (Love it!)
Powder Room Hardwood Floors Complete

The inside of the house is really starting to take form.. so exciting!

Pre-Settlement walk through scheduled for 2/21 & Closing for 2/25.  After all the loan approval drama I had, my loan went back to NVR.
42'' Tahoe Square Cherry Bordeaux Cabinets - Antique Mascarello Counters - Dal-Gres Russet Floor Tile

(Daltile) Dal-Gres Russet (DG32). 

Daltile in Fidenza Cafe (FD02) -  Listello Stone Radiance Morning Sun/Tortoise/Mushroom Blend (SA52)

Thursday, January 17, 2013

I hate to be Mrs. Debbie Downer but uuuugggh!

I stopped by today and found that the shower and tub tile had been installed (very nice),  my espresso vanity upgrade has finally arrived, the kitchen cabinets and island are installed,  appliances in the Family Room ready to go, all of the doors and trim and at least a few coats of primer.  I also found a big "NOT APPROVED" notice from the County taped to my beautiful kitchen cabinets. 

For what you ask?  The basement plumbing rough-in. I had a hunch that is was not positioned correctly (as noted in my previous post). 

I also found that the HVAC unit had been relocated.  My unfinished storage space seems to have some sort of  plumbing leak.  The insulation around the pipe is hanging off of the wall and damp to touch.

The basement walls have some bulging  & cracking at the (drywall) seams.  

Mismatched trim on the capped wall at the bottom of the stairs. 

I try not to nitpick every little thing but seriously?!  I would much rather my PM bring this stuff to my attention, like "Hey, if you stop by you might see this but don't worry" than for me to have to bring it to his. 

I know you all think I'm being too nice (& you're right, my whole family thinks I'm a push over) but at this point Im over it.  I'm a get it right the first time person and I think I've been a little too relaxed when it comes to these bloopers.  A home inspection is at the TOP of my list and a walk through to point out my issues and understand the remedy. 

My first thought was to stop going by all together and just show up after closing and hope to have a nice, thoroughly constructed home but I don't know, something about that gives me heartburn. 

Of course I was so pissed that I didn't take pictures.  Maybe this weekend.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Day 55 ( I'm Back)

A lot has happened during my short hiatus.  Our lease is up , we have moved out of my apartment, moved all of our stuff to storage (I had no idea we had so much stuff) & moved in with relatives until the house is done.

We had our pre-drywall walk through on 1/2/13 and it went well.  Basically reviewed all of the electrical, the plumbing, and verified all of my structured cable upgrades.   Two days later we had walls.  PM plans to have the house done on  2/25/13 but we have yet to receive an official closing date.

I have been too busy to stop by and actually go in but I drove by today, and saw that all of the goodies that were in the garage were no longer there.  That means when I go by in the morning I should have cabinets, doors, and trim in place.

A couple of things I learned at the pre-drywall meeting:

1) Yes, the walkout door is in the wrong place according to the plans BUT with the way the lot is graded, it would have been impossible to put it on the correct side.   He was very apologetic for all of the mishaps along the way.  This is the first Palermo he and his crew have built and said that they were not as familiar with the plans as they are with other builds. 

2)  My final change order (yep, the one I signed in September) never actually made it.  So the upgraded vanity that I asked for in the Master Bath was not there and of course, the standard one was.  I am so glad that I asked my PM if he had received all the right cabinets because I noticed that a number of RH bloggers asked for one thing and got something totally different.

3)  The tree debate is ongoing.  My PM said that he thought that my lot was the one lot that had a weird line for the Resource Protection Area so he'd had to have the area staked out before we can get rid of the trees we don't want.  He agreed that the dead trees that have fallen over and branches was messy and agreed to have those hauled away.  Until we get the RPA staked out, we won't know what trees we can touch.

I hope to have lots of good photos tomorrow. 

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Pre-Drywall Meeting in the morning..

I'm a little worried (disclaimer: I'm a worrier). I've been reading other blogs to get a feel for what to expect from the meeting & a lot of folks seem to agree that it's a good idea to have a professional inspector there with you. At this point, I'm a little late with a 9am walk through scheduled.

What are some tips you can share from your walk through or things that really stuck out that I should be on the lookout for?

An update on our progress: All of the siding is up & I love the siding color choice against the Grand Caramel brick. We are waiting for the brick to be finished on the back of the house but i love it. The Garage floor is in & all of the electrical & insulation completed last week. Another uhh ohh brought to my attention by someone who was on site last week; Somehow some plumbing in my basement was covered by the Heating & Air Unit. I didn't mention it to my PM but will be curious to hear about this one in the morning.

The basement walkout door stayed on the wrong side (as compared to the plans) but of course, the waste of space (aka storage) was still put in place. We have already agreed that as soon as we close on the house, we're having the storage space completely finished. I pictured the basement being much bigger.

I am happy with my progress so far, minus the few bumps in the road. Hoping to get an accurate completion date in the morning.

Happy New Year