Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Waiting for Building Permit

It's April 1st already and we yet have to start digging. Groundbreaking was supposed to be yesterday but I have not heard from our PM, so I checked the status of our construction permit from the county's website and found out that they are still reviewing the building plan. I am new to the home construction process (pardon my ignorance) so I was actually surprised by the plethora of information I could get from the county's website showing construction permits that have been completed or are still pending for our and our neighbors' houses that have been built or are still being built.

First, I found out that our house is going to be 4856 sqft big (including the unfinished basement). Yes, I am now just realizing that lol. We want more space and I know we are getting a bigger house but I personally did not think it's gonna be that big. We opted for the Palermo which is one of the smaller floor plans (if not the smallest) in our community. I just did not realize that the extra 1st floor  bedroom, bonus room and morning room would add that much to the house size. That is huge and there are only three of us. What are we gonna do with all the space? Who's going to do all the cleaning? :)

From the website, I also looked up information such as home size, no of rooms, lot dimensions, yard size, interior, options (fireplace, decks, porch, etc) and estimated value of all the houses in our development. Interestingly, if you add the estimated value of our house plus the land value, their total will be about $56,000 less than the purchase price that we are paying Ryan. Does that mean Ryan profits $56,000 from our house? I assume their profit is more than that probably because the actual cost of construction is way lower than the estimated value of our house. I just wish our appraisal will come out higher than the purchase price. 

More important, I found out from the county website that there is an inspection at every step of the home construction process. I'm sure this is common knowledge to everyone but it's totally new to me so I'm excited about that. The county inspects almost everything including:
Concrete Encased Electrode (what is this?)
Fire Plan

The website also shows the different subcontractors that Ryan uses for plumbing, electrical, gas, fireplaces, heating and air, etc. I also see A LOT of "Rejections" after the county performs its inspection and Ryan homes had to correct the mistakes before being approved. For example the Ravenna across our lot had its foundation rejected after inspection due to the following reason: R318 HDG nails for all toe nailing into pressure treated wood. The electrical has been rejected too and the reason was: Painting. Huh? (Painting over an outlet?)

I don't necessarily know what those reasons for rejection mean, but it's comforting to know that the county has somewhat a "strict" standard for inspections. This eased my worries a bit and made me feel a little less anxious of the construction process and the nightmares that's been going on in my head (I have been reading about ryan homes nightmares). I am still leaning towards getting a 3rd party inspector before drywall and right before closing but of course it can get expensive. Did any of you hire your own inspector? 


  1. wow, that is awesome you were able to find out so much information on the county website. I was unaware of this as well. How were you able to find that information? I have seen our inspection reports but that does not give the other information you have mentioned. Thanks in advance and hopefully they get started soon!

    1. Thanks Amber! They finally started digging today:) I am not sure if every county/city has this information but I just visited the government website of our county and they have all the information for Permits. Our PM gave us a copy of the surveyed lot and it has a permit number there so I looked it up in the county website. It turned out I actually did not need the permit number because I could search info by address or by Contractor's name, so I searched "Ryan homes" and I looked up all the permits that Ryan applied for in the county.

  2. I'm going through the same process. Waiting on permits for the second time since originally they approved it with wrong plan. It was supposed to a reversed plan. We have a hole, and was supposed to have our pre-construction meeting yesterday, but its on hold for now.

    1. Hope they get your permits straightened out. Ours just got approved 5 days ago so we were delayed for a week on our estimated start date. They just started excavating our basement today. Hopefully the settlement date stays the same.