Landscaping & Appliances

This week the builder worked double time to get the finishing touches completed at the house in order to be ready for an initial county inspection that took place on Friday. Shrubs and bushes were planted, mulch was placed, and hydroseed was sprayed. The screen for the back sun room and appliances  were installed, and after some additional paint touch ups inside a final cleaning took place.

Here are some of the progress pictures we captured this week:

Landscaping work has begun
All of the bushes and shrubs are in by the time the workers left for lunch
By the end of the day the mulch had been placed
Love the purplish pink flowering shrubs up against the blue-gray exterior
Encore Azalea bushes placed up along the east side of the house (and as you can see by the mismatched hardboard siding, external paint touch ups are still a WIP)
Fescue hydroseed has been sprayed
Straw blankets were placed in spots where water is anticipated to run off
Wall oven, cook top, dishwasher, and fridge have been installed – Just need to peel the protective layer of plastic once we move in

Here are the items still left to complete:

  • County code inspector’s punch list (install attic ladder, complete combustion air termination for fireplace, tape and mud basement ceiling penetrations, install cook top lockout breaker) – This weekend
  • External paint touch ups – Next week?
  • Install window screens – Next week?
  • Install remaining accent stone caps around garage – Next week?
  • Irrigation installation – to be scheduled w/ landscaper once Certificate of Occupancy is received

Punch list items:

  • Final paint and caulk touch ups inside
  • Clean up clay and paint spots on carpets
  • Repair damaged brickwork
  • Replace damaged window glazing beads
  • Repair scratches on hardwood floors, kitchen cabinet
  • Repair damaged dryer vent connection
  • Inspect water marks on trim in guest bathroom and great room (lower right corner window)

We are scheduled to do our final walk-through on Monday. At this time we will provide a punch list (see above) of any items we are not 100% happy with for the builder to come back and correct. The county inspector will be back again on Monday as well to ensure a couple (minor) code related items he provided to the builder were corrected.

In talking to our lender, it sounds like it will take five business days to process the necessary paperwork to convert our construction loan to a conventional loan. During this time our new home consultant will be working with the builder to complete the finishing touches on the house and then with the bank to coordinate a time for a final appraisal to take place. Once the bank receives the final inspection from the appraiser and certificate of occupancy from the county, we will be provided the keys to our new house.

We hope to get some final pictures to share with everyone once we are all settled, but in the next couple weeks we will be busy packing, moving, unpacking, and then prepping our current home to put on the market to rent out. Future updates might be less frequent moving forward for a little bit, but Derek and I still plan to use the blog to share updates about ongoing projects around the house (ex: landscaping, outdoor kitchen, dock build, finishing of the basement).

Stone & Stain

This week we met with the builder on the lot to discuss the final grading, water control, and the last remaining steps. The supervisor was hoping to get it turned over to us by the end of next week but some additional rain next week might delay that. Workers have been busy getting us closer to that goal though.

On the exterior, we have seamless gutters and downspouts installed. The lot also had its last rough grade. The stone veneer has been put on and we love how it finishes off the look of the house. Around the side of the house, we have a small deck/walkway that wraps around to the back screen room. At the back of the house, not much has changed other than the chimney cap getting put on. At this point, they will need to power wash the house, repair any damaged siding and give the house its final coat of paint.

Moving inside, the stone veneer has been placed around the raised hearth and fireplace surround up to the mantle. The oak tread staircase, railings, and front door are getting stained a rich walnut color to match the dark wood floors through the rest of the house.

Here are some pictures of the progress from this past week:

The stone accents on the front of the house have finally been installed!
We love the way the stone accents bring out the blue tones of the paint
Chimney cap has been installed
Sun room landing and stairs are in, but still waiting on the screens to be installed
Front door has been stained a dark walnut color to match our flooring
The second level landing, stairs, and railing have their first coat of stain
Upper loft railing has stain – It looks like the first coat is soaking in quickly
Stone was installed around the fireplace – All that’s left is staining the mantle
Seeing the front steps and number on our house really hits home that our move-in time is just around the corner!

Here are the items still left to complete:

  • Interior paint and trim touch up – WIP
  • Stain hardwood landing, stairs, mantle – WIP
  • Appliance installation – This weekend?
  • Fine grading, landscaping, extend drainage pipes around basement of house – Monday, March 25th
  • Sun room screens – Next week?
  • Power wash exterior, second coat of paint – Next week?
  • Irrigation installation – TBD

Punch list items:

  • Replace spray foam over sprayed roof shingles (shingles delivered Wednesday, March 20th)
  • Repair damaged brickwork
  • Replace damaged window glazing beads
  • Repair scratches on hardwood floors
  • Repair damaged dryer vent connection


Carpet Installation & Sun Room Progress

This week has been another relatively rain-free week, so there was a good amount of progress made on the house.  On Tuesday, when we dropped by the house on lunch, we saw the garage door and fireplace mantle had been hung and workers were making progress on the sun room.

Later that evening, we met with the contractor that would be building our sun room landing and stairs, to coordinate how we wanted that placed. When we arrived on site, we noticed that the sun room guard rails and door were installed.

On Wednesday carpet installation began and by Thursday it was complete.

By the end of the day Thursday, HVAC was turned up, the hardwood floor for the upper level landing and sun room fan had been installed, and two of the three exterior columns had been placed.

We caught the builder and our new home consultant as we were on our way out and they let us know that stone would be delivered over the weekend for the exterior accents and columns.

A rough grading was supposed to take place on Friday, with landscaping work  to begin today, but we ended up getting rained out. Once the ground has a chance to dry out we should start to see those trades start their work.

All in all, we are making steady progress. Here are some pictures from this week:

Two out of three exterior columns have been placed
Garage door has been installed
The sun room installation is coming along nicely
Sun room door has been installed – just waiting on the landing and stairs
The guard rails have been installed for the sun room – Just waiting on the screens
Love the leaf print fan blades in our sun room
We have a fireplace mantle!
The second story landing is in – All that’s left is to stain it, the stairs, and the fireplace mantle to match the engineered hardwood in the rest of the house
Carpet pad being installed on the second level of the house
Carpet pad has been installed in the master bedroom
The front office/guest bedroom carpet pad installation is complete
Carpet installation begins!
Close up of our carpet selection – It’s a mix of gray, beige, and cream
First level, front facing guest bedroom/office has carpet and it looks great!
Carpet installation in the master bedroom is complete
Second story loft area has carpets
Bonus room/5th bedroom is carpeted and blue tape placed for paint touch up
Upstairs, rear facing bedroom has been carpeted and walls marked for touch ups
Upstairs, front facing bedroom has carpet and in need of very few paint touch ups

And, here are the items still left to complete:

  • Stone accents in front of house, around fireplace (install chimney cap?) – Monday, March 18th
  • Seemless gutters, downspouts – Monday, March 18th
  • Appliance delivery, installation – Tuesday, March 19th
  • Interior paint and trim touch up – next week?
  • Stain hardwood landing, stairs, mantle – TBD
  • Sun room screens and deck stairs – TBD
  • Irrigation installation – TBD
  • Final grading, landscaping, extend drainage pipes around basement of house – 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
  • Repair scratches on hardwood floors

Woodwork & Countertop Replacement

There has been a lot of work completed at the house this week. The wood stair treads leading up to the second story and guard rails have been installed and are waiting to be stained. The deck portion of the sun room has also been completed. The next step is to have the screened walls and stairs put in. Also, the frameless glass shower door in the master en suite has been installed, and all the bathroom vanity countertops have replaced.

Stair treads have been installed leading up to the second story
Guard rail work is complete
Wood will be stained to match the hardwood flooring in the rest of the house
Another view of the wood work that was recently completed
Deck work is well underway
View from the sliding glass doors out to the deck
Now that the deck work is complete, the next step is enclosing the screen room
The frameless glass shower doors have been installed in the master en suite
The replacement vanity countertops are finally in
We definitely appreciate the subtle gray swirling in this manufacturer’s product

Here are the items still left to complete:

  • Interior clean up, paint and trim touch up, – Scheduled for this coming week
  • Carpet installation – TBD
  • Appliance delivery, installation – TBD
  • Sun room screens and deck stairs – TBD
  • Gutters, downspouts, extend drainage pipes around basement of house – TBD
  • Stone accents in front of house, around fireplace, install chimney cap – 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

Septic & Driveway

After a week and a half, of what felt like non-stop rain, the weather has cleared up enough for the builder to have our driveway poured. The builder had to deliver 3-4 truck loads of dirt to grade up to our garage. Also, we requested they put the driveway as close to the property line as possible and to make it 16′ wide the entire length. It cost us a little extra money but it will definitely be worth it once we have 3 or 4 cars in the driveway.

Moving around back of the house, the plumber had installed the septic tank and was digging trenches for the drain lines. Interior plumbing work should start in the next day or two as well. They are holding off until the bathroom vanity tops are replaced.

Finally, we noticed that they installed our mailbox. Seeing our mailbox with the house number really hit home that we should be moving in shortly. Might be time to get back and start packing things up!

We have a mailbox
Septic work begins
Workers are prepping for the deck work that will be completed later in the week
Sun room supports in place and trenches for the drain field has been dug
Drain field work has begun
Drainage will run from one side of the property to the other, spaced every 5ft
Septic and drainage work is complete – Rough grading for the driveway begins
Concrete driveway being poured
Parking pad is complete and workers are making their way down the driveway
Sidewalk to the front entry is poured and beginning to set
Another view of the sidewalk to the front entry
Concrete work is just about complete!

Lighting & HVAC

There has been a good amount of progress inside the house this week. All lighting fixtures have been installed, switches are wired, wall outlets are in place, thermostats have been wired up, and the air conditioning condensers are hooked up outside.

Front entry light fixture has been installed
Dining room chandelier
Love the light fixture at the top of the second story – It’s a smaller version of the one at the front entry
Ceiling fans have been installed in each of the bedrooms
Love the fan in the great room, but it’s going to be a chore keeping it clean
Master en suite light fixtures are in
Pendant light above the corner kitchen sink
Jack n Jill bathroom light fixtures mirror those from the master en suite
We decided to upgrade the bonus room/fifth bedroom and have this light fixture replaced with a ceiling fan to match all the other rooms
Ecobee thermostats have been installed both upstairs and downstairs
External lights for the front and side entry have been installed, as well as a ceiling fan in the sun room and flood lights at either end of the rear of the house
In preparation for the HVAC being turned up, two air condenser units have been installed, one for the upstairs and one for the downstairs of the house

We received some really good news this week as well. Our new home consultant called to let us know that they heard back from the cabinet company about our concerns regarding the bathroom countertops. Apparently the manufacturer had trouble keeping up with the high volume of orders and experienced a shortage from their original supplier. In order to continue filling orders, and unbeknownst to the builder, they started to fill orders with a different supplier to help fill demand. Since what we recently had installed looks nothing like the builder’s sample piece, the cabinet provider is going to switch the countertops out for the ones that match what we selected. We are hoping to have that work scheduled as soon as next week, and were told the plumber (who was scheduled to come out this past Monday) is on hold until that work is complete.

Unfortunately, much of the work we’ve been waiting to be finished outside (concrete driveway, patio, parking pad, additional fill dirt and topsoil etc.) has been on hold due to the large amount of rain we’ve received. We are hoping for a dry spell so the builder can continue to progress in those areas.