Tuesday, September 30, 2008

It begins

This is our lot.  We bought it April 11, 2008, which happened to fall on our three year anniversary.  Yes, there is a fire hydrant in the front of the house – at least we are safe!  But, it could change where the driveway goes.  That is still yet to be determined. 

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

We have a plan

When I last left most of you, I was complaining about my architect. We have [long] since found a new architect - Philip Rye (rye-homes.com). He specializes in energy efficient homes and works with a builder who does the same. After two drafts, Brad and I had our dream home on paper. 

Our floor plan, we designed it ourselves.  The great room area includes living, dining, kitchen and pool table rooms.
Ta da!
OK. So we wanted to go with stained concrete floors because 1. they look really cool, and 2. we can do them ourselves and save a ton on flooring cost (like the whole great room area would cost around $300.
We took the design to our builder, and he visited our lot, and on our second visit, he informed us that our lot slopes. A lot. So, the deck off the back will probably be about 8 feet in the air. Hmmmm, not what I was wanting. And since it is so high, we would not be able to do a slab foundation, we would have to have a crawl space. AND since we are already 8 feet in the air with a "hole" under our house, why don't we do a basement instead of an attic bonus room?
OK. Cool. Except now, we have a 3,007 sqf house for two people!
Like, we could literally have a bowling alley in our basement. (And don't think Brad didn't seriously consider it).
So, we have to present our design to the ARC (architectural review committee) of our neighborhood. If they don't like the design of our house, we cant build it.
A rendering of what the front of our house will look like.  The two left gables are the front of the side entry garage.
It will be a sandy brown painted brick with dry stacked stone accent and a dark brown roof and trim.
One of the things the ARC requires is a survey of the property that shows where the house will go (that cost $650 - ouch!). During that process, we discovered that the property DOES slope about 6 feet, but the area the house will be on is only about a 3 foot drop. And new costs put the basement addition around an extra 17K. SO, we are back to a bonus room over the attic. Which is perfectly fine for us. AND that means we can do a "block and fill" foundation (which is kind of a mix of a crawl space and slab), so we are back to our stained concrete floors! Which is exciting and also sad. During the period we were told we had to go with a crawl space, I kind of fell in love with these dark stained bamboo floors. But, seeing as our budget just dropped from 5K to $300 on the flooring, I think I can live with it!
I will continue to keep everyone updated as we progress. We are working on financing, but seeing as we packed all of our previous paperwork, we have a bit of "storage space diving" we have to do. I would love to break ground by October 1. Or else I will cry.