Marble Installation & Finishing Trim Work

We received a call this morning giving us a heads up that we needed to bring our induction cook top to the construction site for the marble countertop installation. When we arrived, we found that some finishing trim work was being completed too.

By the end of the day, when we stopped back to pick up the cook top, the kitchen countertops and island were done. And, we had some closet shelving, bathroom mirrors, and doorknobs too.

All in all, while the plumber and HVAC contractors haven’t made an appearance yet, it was a nice surprise to have this other work completed a day early. Here are some pictures of today’s progress:

Bathroom mirrors and closet shelving delivery
Shelving is laid out while closets are being prepped for installation
Kitchen pantry shelving is complete
Laundry room shelving – We’ll probably have cabinets installed in the future
Guest bathroom linen closet – We may alter this at a later time in order to utilize it as a coat closet instead
Derek checking out the master en suite mirror that was installed – it’s HUGE!
Another view of the master en suite mirror
The master bedroom walk-in closet will definitely need an organizer – We might need to take a trip to IKEA and look around at their customizable options
Shelving in the guest bedroom (Derek’s office) is complete
Linen closet in the jack n jill bath
The mirror has been installed above one of the vanities in the jack n jill bath and the towel wracks will be going up next
Shelving in the rear facing, second level bedroom
Shelving in the front facing, second level bedroom
Mirror and towel holder installed at the other end of the jack n jill bathroom
Shelving in the front facing, bonus room/fifth bedroom
While checking out the finishing trim work being completed, the countertop installation crew arrived, so we decided to stick around and grab some progress pictures.
This section that’s being carried in is for the corner kitchen sink
This section will soon have a cook top cut out from the center of it
This section was from the replacement slab that I wasn’t too sure about, but now that it’s in place, I’m loving it!
Prepping to install the kitchen sink
Kitchen Island has been installed – It’s looks like a piece of art
Love the finished look – Can’t wait to see the vent fan and wall oven go in
The cook top is in, but the drawer underneath it will need some modification to make it usable
Tomorrow, the marble will be sealed in order to prevent future staining – The sealer we selected comes with a 25yr warranty
When we returned at the end of the day to pick up the cook top, we found that the lighting and fans had been delivered! We hope to see those installed by the end of this week.

Flooring & Countertops

Last week we met with our construction supervisor and new home consultant. We wanted to meet on site to discuss the placement of our driveway and some concerns we had regarding the grading process.

Prior to meeting, we sent an email as a reminder that we paid extra to have a basement and were told there was an added cost in this contract line item to cover trucking in fill dirt (to build up the driveway, parking pad, and around the front and sides of the home). In our on site discussion, we pointed out the fact that the layer of topsoil from our lot had been scraped away by the grader and used to back fill for these things instead. Because of this, our lot was stripped down to the red layer of clay. We explained that this of course will cause issues in the landscaping portion of the build process, as the compacted clay soil is not ideal for growing grass by seed. Ultimately, we requested that the builder consider using topsoil instead of fill dirt to replace what the grader moved. They agreed and assured us that the building supervisor would schedule another on site meeting to discuss these details with the proper parties.

Earlier this week, we made one of our daily lunch visits to the construction site and noticed that the power had been ran from the electrical box out front to the utility meter on the side of our home. We also noticed something we had originally overlooked in the excitement of seeing our cabinets installed: wiring for the vent fan and under cabinet lighting that needs to be re-routed.

We sent a quick message to our contact and she assured us this would be addressed. She also made us aware that the countertop company had been out to the site to create templates, and suggested we schedule a time to lay out how we wanted these cut from our slab. So, we coordinated a time with East Coast Granite and did just that. Here are some pictures of the process:

Templates have been placed on our marble slab selection – This piece will be installed to the left of our wall oven
The rectangular, taped off section here (below the stencil) is being reserved for the kitchen island – We love the accentuated dark grey veins in this piece
Unfortunately, when the stone cutters were moving the larger countertop piece, the stone snapped in half. Instead of starting at square one, we decided to compromise and use this darker veined piece of marble from the same lot.
Here is another view of the replacement slab. I really like the mixture of colors in the section that the corner sink will be cut from, but I’m having a harder time with the darker section towards the opposite end.

Another update, this one we are probably the most excited about, a big portion of our flooring was installed! All that’s left is the carpet and hardwood stair treads leading up to the second level.

Our engineered hand scraped hardwood flooring has been installed and has been covered to protect it while the final work is completed
Love the rich colored and wide planked birch wood we selected. It really compliments the white trim and Smoke Embers paint color we picked out!
The wood and spindle material has been delivered for the stairway and landing leading up to the second floor – We can’t wait to see it installed and stained to match our flooring

Finally, the update we are probably the least excited about… In an effort not to be redundant, I’ll just let the photos and their captions do the explaining:

While we liked the cultured marble bathroom countertop sample we based our decision off of in the builder’s show room…
…this is what the product actually looked like after it was delivered and installed in the guest bathroom
Close up of the cultured marble bathroom countertops installed in the jack n jill bathroom
As you can see, the gray “veining” in the material that was installed looks nothing like the sample we based our decision off of
We suspect this may have been a bad batch and that the grey colored resin was not mixed properly
We engaged our new home consultant who is in contact with the distributor. If the distributor confirms that this is the intended look, Derek and I have agreed we will be pushing for the builder to have it replaced.

With three weeks left until the one year anniversary of signing our contract, we are getting down to the wire of the 8-12 month build time quoted to us.

Here are the items still left to complete:

  • Final Plumbing hookup, toilets, sinks –> Plumber was scheduled Feb 22nd, but was a no show
  • Power on HVAC –> Scheduled for Feb 25th
  • Lighting, fan installation –> Delivery Feb 25th and installation Feb 26th
  • Kitchen countertop installation –> Scheduled for Feb 26th
  • Final Electrical hookup, light switches, electrical box covers, reroute electrical for vent fan, under cabinet wiring – TBD
  • Carpet, hardwood stair tread installation – TBD
  • Poured concrete for the driveway, patio, parking pad, sidewalk to front entryway – TBD
  • Appliance delivery, installation – TBD
  • Deck, sun room – TBD
  • Stone accents in front of house, around fireplace, install fireplace cap – TBD
  • Garage door, mailbox installation – TBD
  • Gutters, downspouts, extend drainage pipes around basement of house – TBD
  • Internal paint and trim touch up, clean up – TBD
  • Septic tank installation – TBD
  • Final grading, landscaping, irrigation installation – TBD
  • Power wash exterior, second coat of paint – TBD

Punch list items:

  • Replace spray foam over sprayed roof shingles
  • Repair damaged brickwork
  • Replace damaged window trim
  • Replace damaged island trim

Cabinet Installation

Yesterday cabinets were delivered, and by the end of the day today, the kitchen and bathroom installation was complete. Next step is coordinating with East Coast Granite to template and install the marble countertops.

Cabinets have been delivered
All these boxes have it feeling like Christmas in February
Cabinet hardware
We went with the brushed nickel look
Kitchen cabinets are beginning to be placed
By lunch time, the bathroom vanities were in – Here’s a peak at the guest bath
Master en suite cabinets and hardware look great
Second level jack n jill bathroom
Single vanity installed on one side
Second level jack n jill bath
Larger, second vanity installed on the other
After work we visited the site again and the cabinet installation was complete
The next step will be to create a template for the stone countertops
Can’t wait to see the marble countertops and black stainless appliances go in
The center island has storage on one side plus accommodate seating for two
Lots of natural light with the sliding glass doors and windows above the sink
Love the placement of the dishwasher and corner sink
Can’t wait to see the wall oven and cook top stove with vent fan go in

We are down to the last two months of the build process and we are starting to get really excited about the big move. On Tuesday, we’ll be meeting with our construction supervisor to discuss the placement of our driveway and hopefully by that time, or soon thereafter, we’ll have better projected completion dates for the remaining work:

  • Kitchen, bathroom countertop template, installation
  • Appliance delivery, installation
  • Deck, sun room
  • Stone accents in front of house, around fireplace, install fireplace cap
  • Garage door, mailbox installation
  • Gutters, downspouts, extend drainage pipes around basement of house
  • Poured concrete for the driveway, patio, parking pad, sidewalk to front entryway
  • Hardwood flooring, carpet installation
  • Final Plumbing hookup, toilets, sinks
  • Final Electrical hookup, light switches, electrical box covers, power on HVAC
  • Lighting, fan installation
  • Internal paint and trim touch up, clean up
  • Septic tank installation
  • Final grading, landscaping, irrigation installation
  • Power wash exterior, second coat of paint

Punch list items:

  • Replace spray foam over sprayed roof shingles
  • Repair damaged brickwork
  • Replace damaged window trim
  • Replace damaged island trim

Exterior Paint Work

Last March, when we originally signed our contract, we provided an address for a house in one of the builder’s tracts that we liked the external color of (Sherwin Williams’ Grizzle Grey). Unfortunately, when we took one of our daily trips to the construction site, we noticed that the color being painted looked a lot darker than we expected. We decided to drive by the house we based our color decision off of and that’s when we knew that the builder had made a mistake.

We called our new home consultant and had her check the contract and compare the color that was being painted with the color at the address we had asked them to base our color scheme off of. She confirmed that it was definitely two different colors.

In the end, the darker color (James Hardie’s Iron Grey) really grew on us and we ended up liking it better. The blue/grey tone really pops with the bright white trim and black accents, especially in the back of the house which gets full sun.

Here are some photos of the external paint progress to date:

Exterior paint work has begun!
The first coat of paint has been sprayed
The poor lighting conditions make this color appear darker than it really is
The driveway and parking pad have been rough graded to prepare for concrete
Just the chimney, trim work, and then a second coat left to complete
White trim has begun on the east side of the house – Love the contrast
Front porch has metal flooring placed – Prepping for concrete in the near future
First coat of exterior paint and trim is complete
Close up of the paint color – The slate blue/grey color changes shades with different lighting
At the end of the build process, the house will be power washed and then given a second coat of paint
We love the rich color: James Hardie Iron Grey
The white trim really makes this color pop
We are excited to see how the screened in sunroom and second story deck finish off the house’s look
On a cloudy day, the external color has an extra rich, stately look
On a clear and sunny day, this color takes on more of a blueish-grey hue
The low e windows give a lightly tinted look and help protect against UV rays
View of the back side of the house from the lake

Now that the first coat of paint is complete, here is a walk through video of both the inside and outside of the house:

Interior Paint Work

Painters have been on-site and busy getting the interior walls and trim painted. We went back and forth on the color a bit as the builder only had a selection of about 5 or 6 different interior colors that they normally paint. Originally, after telling us we had to pick from their selection, we settled on a color called “Amazing Gray”. We proceeded to purchase a couple gallons of the color and paint the master bedroom in our current home to see how well we liked it. We didn’t. So, we went back to the builder and firmly requested a color we love, “Smoke Embers”. The new home consultant got back to us after speaking with the painter and agreed to paint our requested color. We are so glad we didn’t settle and love how the interior is coming along.