Monday, March 24, 2014

Pre-construction meeting

The pre-construction meeting with our project manager (PM), project supervisor (PS) and SR was held last Friday March 21st. The meeting lasted for about 1.5 hours in the office and another 30 mins in the lot. It went okay and most of our questions have been addressed. They expect to receive the building permit sometime this week, and will start digging (groundbreaking) on the week of March 31st. I really thought that permits have to be secured first before holding the pre-construction meeting. I guess they are in a hurry to start on our house. PM said that the Palermo is typically completed in less than 90 days. Estimated closing will happen in late June. SR mentioned before that Ryan Homes have a quota for the number of houses that they have to finish by the end of the 2nd quarter June 30th (maybe Ryan Homes' fiscal year runs from July 1 - June 30). Either way, the PM promised us that we could move in by July 1st (or else he'll be fired I guess - just kidding :)

Both the PM and PS seem very nice and helpful. We got a copy of the electrical blueprint and it looks like all the switch and outlet locations in the plan make sense (none located between windows, etc.). I read how several bloggers complain about counterintuitive or unreasonable locations of some light switches. So before coming to the meeting, we made a list of specific locations of switches that we would request. It turns out that we did not have to request a thing because the switches are pretty much spot on. We'll see how the plan translates into the actual building. PM also assured us that there will be no exhaust vents on the facade of the house. We also specified locations of recessed lightings and hose bibs.

We asked that they do not install the dishwasher that comes with the kitchen package. PM said the house won't pass inspection without a dishwasher. He also did not approve to install our own dishwasher. He said that they do not put anything that they do not gurarantee and we can't use our personal stuff in case for some reasons that we couldn't close on the house. Boo!

We then went to our lot that has been staked (with pink and orange flags) to show the extent of our lot and the exact placement of our house on the lot. The future house on our left will be the ranch type Springhaven also with left side-entry garage (as ours). Their construction will start roughly the same time as ours. The house on the right side is a Ravenna with a basement and has just been completed. The PM and PS walked us around this Ravenna to show us some of the exterior features that would be in our house too (what the exhaust and dryer vents look like, the sump pump drain, gutter drain, exterior lights, exterior outlets, double-welled basement exit, etc

Overall, the meeting went okay but not as we expected. We reviewed and verified all of our options but we were hoping to see the actual blueprints of our house but were told that they are not yet available. As soon as construction starts, we will receive weekly email updates from the PM and calls/texts ad hoc.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Some exciting news - Loan approval and Pre-construction mtg scheduled

Our mortgage loan has been approved sometime last week (between March 3-7), but we have not been notified until today because our LO has been out of the office. All the same, thank God! SR also called today to inform us that permits have been cleared and that we can schedule our pre-construction meeting next Friday, March 21st. Getting ready for a blog-reading blitz before Friday to make my pre-construction questions list.