Thursday, May 10, 2012

Prelude to the Construction

The pre-construction meeting was today and it looks like we will be breaking ground next Wednesday!  Also, the change order was signed for the house location and the lot will be staked again tomorrow so that the house can be moved 20' to the left. 

Our PM was pleasant to speak with and seems to have a good background of experience.  We got a cell phone number, email, and the assurance from PM he would call us once a week for a status update, in writing no less (sorry Stuart, still don't understand why that is not the same for yours)!  The SR will also send us weekly photos of the house.

I am going to call one of the sub-contractors tomorrow to ask about the HVAC and water heater to get more information like the models and sizing.  The PM did not have all that information which I understand since you cannot know every single detail.  I was glad and encouraged that they pointed me to another subject matter expert rather than giving me some canned answer.  Since I am getting a heat pump I also wanted to see if I am getting a full size furnace with an added heat pump, or a reduced gas furnace just to use when it is very cold. 

The PM pointed out that they do not survey and mark the corners of the lots with the metal marker slugs.  This will cost something like $200-$300 to have this done for us.  I am going to have this done just in case we do decide on putting up a fence.  Our 14 year old dachshund does not go too far these days so the fence is not imperative at this point.

Something else that just happened to turn out good (we were lucky) was the fact that the electrical panel, main water connection, and the sewage clean out are all located in unfinished areas of the basement.  This is not a matter of design mind you, but just on the orientation of your house to the different utility lines.  If you have qualms about any of these things in your unfinished areas it would be good to find out how they will install them sooner rather than later.

I also asked about a few things that I saw on Ryan Homes Cobblestone - Building Our Victoria Falls:
  • Drywall is only tacked in place with nails and then screwed in
    • Confirmed
  • The sub floor is glued down and nailed with ring shank nails
    • Confirmed
  • Basement rough-in plumbing venting
  • All non GFCI outlets are AFCI (Arc Fault)
    • Confirmed
  • Window wells have gravel in the bottom that drain down to the drainage system that surrounds the foundation
    • Confirmed

13 comments:

  1. Thomas, in defense of my PM, I spoke to mgmt this week and was told, that at least in my region, the PMs are not required to give out a direct phone #. They want the calls funneled through the main office. While I don't like this policy, I at least feel better that it's not something my PM just decided on his own. Anyway, I won't be sleeping tonight. Check out the trim on my house....I did not connect this to Rachel's pink siding issue. My house has hardie planks but the trim is the same stuff the vinyl siding gets and it's PINK!!!!!!!! Kill me!

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    1. Stuart, I am bummed that they let you get that trim and the fact that we in blogosphere did not relay the information to you in time. Seriously makes me angry and I am not even getting the trim! How many upset customers does it take?! SERIOUSLY!

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    2. I am hoping that because what you see in the pics is all they've done so far, that we can resolve this, but wow, the wind has been knocked out of my sails. My agent was with me when we picked that trim. So 3 of us all together had no clue beige = pink. I was so excited earlier today because they did a really nice job on the insulation work, very neat. The framing repairs also were done. I don't think I am going to sleep tonight.

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    3. I would get some rest tonight and believe it will be fixed one way or another. I think that because it is, thankfully, the trim it should not be too big of an issue to replace (IMO). If they do give you the run around just point out that you did not knowingly sign up for pink and you had 2 other people there who did not see that it was pink either.

      Hang in there, I know it sucks now but it will turn out okay in the end.

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  2. Hi Thomas,
    It sounds like you are off to a good start with your PM. Weekly photos... I hope that I am that lucky with my PM!!! I think metal marker slugs are required in Maryland, but I am not sure. I will find out next week.
    Maria

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    1. At my previous house the county came out on their own after our house was built and put the markers in without billing us.

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  3. It pays to have the markers. I have property line issue in my current home after I put my fence in and someone knocked on my door to complain I "Crossed the line."

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  4. http://funnyfunnypictures.net/data/media/58/pink_panther_800_1.jpg
    I'll keep you all posted.

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  5. While I have been happy with my PM, I would have appreciated that once a week update/what's to come call or email. Maybe he skipped it since I was at the house damn near daily and text him almost as much. BUT, my sales rep went hands off as soon as we did the Pre-con meeting. Then she was laid off half way through the build and the new SR did nothing more then send a "Hi, it's me" email. I wrote comments on my survey that I thought the SR should at least follow up at some point.

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    1. The SR we have seems very focused on doing a good job. She says that she has never had less than perfect rating and what I have seen so far I can see where she has earned that. I mean I don't get everything I ask for, but she tries to get those things done and to answer my more ridiculous questions.

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  6. We have the metal markers, but only in 3 corners. No one can find the other one. Glad to hear that you got everything confirmed and that your PM seems open with communication. I talk to ours a couple times a week and he always follows up quickly.
    I'm surprised that the mechanicals in your area are based on the orientation of the house. Ours are located outside where the lines come to the house, but then everything was run so that it was installed in the unfinished part of the basement.
    We also have the heat pump and though I never asked the question, our furnace seems to be the same as if we didn't have the heat pump. I am interested to hear what they say.

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    1. Yeah, I was surprised too! At first the way we were looking at the house layout with the PM we would have had the sewage clean out in the finished portion of the basement but we had the house turned around, whew!

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  7. Hey good questions ;) We have 2 miniature dachshunds and one will be 14 next month! He still wanders though and in fact he's wandering around the house right now trying to find something to get into lol He's been stuck in the terrible two's for 12 years lol

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