Sunday, July 29, 2012

220 Photos Later

Most, if not all, of RH's houses use pre-framed walls which are then assembled on site.  Granted, I would much rather have the walls framed on site for exact measurements but then, one can't have everything one wants.  While I completely understand the positives from utilizing this method, there are, as with any business decision, accompanying negatives.  Lumber will get damaged and is to some degree expected; however, it also depends on the crew and how they choose to repair or replace the defective areas and how keen of an eye your PM has.  My husband and I walked through the house, which despite my griping, looks amazing!  There is a TON of 2x4s in there and I don't expect every one to be perfectly placed and perfectly nailed ... BUT I do notice the ones that aren't.  I don't think our PM has gone through the entire house to inspect it yet (although one wall was marked via spray paint where the studs were completely missed).  We still have a little over a week until the pre-drywall walkthough so I'll give him time to inspect on his own.  That being said, with the trusty camera in hand, I documented our concerns.  Some were minor like poorly nailed areas, ripped barriers, studs with chunks missing, chipped door frame, etc.  Others were a little more serious such as approximately 4 inches of water in the hole for the basement support post, the ~ 1/4 inch of standing water that the stairs are sitting in and soaking up, broken walls, and gaps in the exterior walls and gaps around the windows. 

Truss Redux

The crane truck made it's appearance late in the day on Monday, many hours after we had departed.  However, our awesome SR, with camera in hand, headed up the street to catch the action for us.  (Many thanks, B!)  He was able to get some great shots -- I really do like the lines on these.  The post-processing junkie that I am was unable to upload them as-is and so after increasing the exposure and correcting for lens distortion, I give you B's photos:

Friday, July 27, 2012

Monsoon Season

Though meteorologically incorrect, it feels as though we are smack in the middle of monsoon season.  July is killing our schedule with all of this rain and heat and rain and rain!  It looks like we just missed the window for a dry build so as a fair warning to those seeking to build in the future, try to schedule your groundbreaking at the beginning of June or earlier if you can to avoid the summer storms.  

The weather, once again, interfered with progress so the trades weren't able to start this week.  The good news, per our PM, is that they'll be in early next week and we are still on target to have our pre-drywall walk-through the week of the 6th.  We're planning to have our real estate agent and a family friend, who is a certified building code official in another state, as extra sets of eyes.  I hope we can finalize the date and get on his calendar. 

If the little one is feeling up to it, we'll be making another road trip to the house this weekend to fill up the memory card!

And because I need a little color and some blue skies, here's a picture of the area taken earlier in the summer.  I grew up in a semi-rural area and seeing the farms and cornfields just makes me feel home again.  I am so going to love this little town!


Monday, July 23, 2012

Today's post brought to you by the letter T

T is for trusses and great big triangles.

We decided to take another long lunch and headed to the house today, which by the way is now semi-wrapped.  At least the second floor, that is.  Check out what we found propped up against the dumpster!  Do you notice anything missing?  That great big hole will be for extra living space.  I can't wait to check out the attic!  Hurry, guys!  (note to self:  get case of Red Bull for crew) 

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Rain, rain, go away!

Between the extreme heat and the downpours, the framing crew has had a fun time this week.  Despite the weather, though, they were mostly done with the exterior walls of the second floor and maybe only a day or so behind.  Needless to say, Mother Nature did not want the trusses up on Friday.  Nor did she want me to have a dry visit on Saturday.  While J and the little one waited in the car, I donned the rain gear and headed into the sopping wet house.  Even with the second floor down, it felt like a steady rain on the interior (just not as bad as outside).

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Garble, translated

Apparently scuba diving while leaving a message is not recommended...
The only word I really needed in Friday's update was indeed permit.  The county took a little longer to approve the plumbing permit so that put things a little behind schedule.  Framing did begin yesterday (WOOT!) but because of the heat, they left a little early.  The temperature reached the triple digits this afternoon so I suspect they didn't stay too long today.  Our PM is hoping to have the trusses up on Friday and the house wrapped by Monday.  Given the heat, we may slide a few days.  I'll have to drop off a cooler of ice and bottled water the next time we make a lunchtime drive-by.  Despite the potential slip, the house may be completed earlier than anticipated (prior to mid-September).  Once the framing is complete, we'll have a better idea of where we are on the schedule. 

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Garble, garble, garble?

I am soooo making a print and hanging this in the house!

Two posts in one day!

Based on last week's PM update, framing would have started on Wednesday or Thursday.  Because we couldn't get out to site during the week, we were looking forward to this Friday's weekly update and this was waiting for us on the machine:

Garble, garble, garble, garble, permits, garble, garble, garble...

One week later...

One week later and my photos from another Courtland Gate model home have finally entered the blogosphere.  I didn't take quite as many pictures of this one since the majority of the house is very similar.  All of these (minus the one of the duct) are now available on the Model page with the other model photos.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Geez, I'm picky...

Q&A with the PM
  1. Waterproofing:  We get the tar waterproofing but no rubber membrane wrap.  To my State:  pooey for lower building code standards.  The slope of the tar will be the grade as well.  Perhaps it was the angle that was throwing me off sine I didn't venture too close.  I guess we'll just have to wait until the next visit once everything is backfilled.
  2. Sink traps:  No  cleanouts on the sink traps.  Here's hoping I don't drop anything of importance down the drain!
  3. Framing Schedule:  The lumber is scheduled for delivery tomorrow (Tuesday) and they hope to start framing on Wednesday or Thursday.  SQUEE!
  4. Porch Downspout:  According to the elevation pictures, the downspout on the porch will empty into the landscaping area between the porch and the garage.  I've asked to see if can be moved to the other side.  The PM will need to review the gutter system layout but if it comes out near the porch, he'll have it buried and resurface it further out in the front yard.  (Can you tell that I am paranoid about water damage??)
  5. Attic Access Doors:  There will not be any attic access doors in the ceiling of the second-floor bedrooms.  (Yes!)
  6. Shower rod:  The secondary bathroom comes with a shower rod.  It'll likely be a standard, straight rod so some time in the future, I'll be swapping it out with a curved rod.
  7. Family Room Windows:  The "last Courtland" has transoms above the family room windows.  We are told that those windows are smaller (3052) which presumably is why the transoms were added and that the Courtland Gate will have taller windows (3062).  Works for me.

Road Trip to the Other CG Model
First of all, here's a big shout out to *colette* for offering to take pictures for me on her next road trip.  (none needed now, thank you!)

Sunday, July 8, 2012

The Earth Moved ... a little

We were out and about on Saturday and decided to make a detour to get a few quick pictures. Maybe it was presumptuous to think that the crew would have completed the backfilling by Friday evening but we were a little surprised.  The good news is that the dirt was pushed around a bit (by the stoop) and we have rocks in our drainage ditches around the foundation.  There's a layer of black (not sure if it's tar, liquid rubber, or asphalt emulsion) on the foundation walls that are directly opposite the living spaces and will be touching earth but no rubber wrap yet.  Hoping on Monday.  (edit:  they won't be wrapping)

Judging by the black, the right side of the house will have a pretty steep grade, which we expected but the left doesn't look like it starts sloping until beyond the garage.  I wonder if it's higher because of the holes they patched (recall the dots from Tuesday's post).  We'll add this to the list of questions for the PM. (edit: the slope of the tar will be the grade)

Friday, July 6, 2012

Pushing Dirt

With this heat, I certainly feel for the crews out there!  I haven't made it out to the site since Tuesday (perhaps this weekend) so photos will be forthcoming!

The waterproofing is complete!  At the time of the afternoon update, they were getting ready to backfill so that portion should be complete as well.  They are hoping to have everything prepped and ready for inspection on Monday or Tuesday which means the basement slab could be poured on Wednesday.  No ETA on the lumber yet but the framing should start soon!

In light of my confusion earlier this week, I finally reversed the floor plans.  I don't have any excuses now!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Dungeon but no Dragon

We were kicked out of the office early granted paid leave so we headed back up to the house to find all of the forms stripped and no trucks--Yes! Another POR shot! Looks like we're on track for waterproofing on Thursday.

timid foundation walls peeking over the dirt

It's a good thing the exposed external walls will receive a coat of paint/sealant that mostly matches the siding.  Otherwise, we'd be out there with sidewalk chalk playing a game of Dots! 
i haz wallz
That little notch on the right is my sole basement window.  Let it be known that the other two windows shown in the floor plan are only available when you get a finished basement.  Oh well, lesson learned for the next house!  We'll just have to put extra lights in the dungeon basement when we finish it.  The good news is that our media room will be nice and dark without an escape hatch a window and we won't be blocking all of the sunlight when we put up the deck.  Lemonade, anyone?
wee window

insert door here please

Seeing how much space the double patio door is consuming on the longer of the two side walls below the morning room made me wonder how much of a wall will remain on the shorter wall in the morning room itself.  Again, I am grateful for the 'Last Courtland' because they have a similar layout (MR with family room extension) and there's really not that much space between the exterior walls.  Definitely doable but it'll be tight.  There's a longer interior wall that separates the MR from the family room extension so it won't look odd from the inside. 

For a glorious few seconds, I thought RH had surprised us by moving the walkout to the other side wall so it would align with the morning room doors.  Reality hit as I remembered we have a reverse plan.  (note to self, flip the floor plan images so I don't confuse myself again)

The patio door ate my wall!
rising from the dirt  #zombiehouse
 grr! argh!

Monday, July 2, 2012

Long Lunch ...with the Boss

I hadn't planned on visiting today but the hubs and our boss (Thanks, boss!) convinced me otherwise.  

Road Trip!  

Having anticipated a full day at the office, I was mildly disappointed that I would be making a trip without my trusty camera.  (Fortunately?) there was a truck parked in front so I wouldn't have been able to get a good POR shot anyhow.  I did, however, have my camera phone which actually takes quality images, even with the post-processing to downsample for optimal web viewing.  

Lesson of the Day:  Travel with a camera in case of impromptu visits to the site.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Barefootin' in the Dirt

Of course, we made another obligatory detour to the playground again, which had received a nice new layer of mulch.  With the recent unpleasantly hot weather, there was little time for baking in the sun playing; however, playtime was cut even shorter as the little one needed a bathroom and the model home had not opened yet.  So... down the street we went to the horrid stench box conveniently-placed portable toilet.  The heat shimmers were a good indication of the intensity of the pungent aroma we would encounter inside.  For the sake of the guys working on site, I surely hope a replacement comes soon...