I wish I could report a one-stop-shop process for building a home, but as I'm sure most of you can imagine it's no easy endeavor. Someone told us that building a house either makes a breaks a relationship--honestly, there haven been moments where I wanted to cry or at the very least throw a can of paint but seeing the progress has been so rewarding. We've lived in this house once before, we just couldn't get enough of it I suppose, so the thought of building it again has made us kind of giddy. I already know exactly how my furniture will fit and where my dishes will go, I'll hang up the kids growth chart on the same wall, and I'll stumble through the darkness with a little more ease this time, I hope...
The last time we built this home a general contractor managed all the day-to-day chaos and this time we decided to take it upon ourselves to general it. With that being said, I think we've both learned some valuable lessons and pocketed a few tricks that we hope to use in the next home. Here are just a few of the things that I hope can help those of you that are planning to muddle through the murky course of home building:
1. Find reputable sub-contractors. Saving a penny is great but sometimes having a good name who does the job right the first time is worth paying the extra cost.
2. Plan accordingly. Map out a time frame for each contractor. Sometimes they will overlap, but make sure to provide a little bit of cushion for those unexpected events i.e. weather, faulty equipment, slowness of other contractors.
3. Imagine the big picture. A new house to call a home is totally the end result, but getting there takes some work. Here is how the progress has moved along so far with us Survey-Excavation-Concrete-Framing-Concrete-Excavation-Siding-Roofing-Plumbing-HVAC-Electrical-Plumbing-Drywall.....See? It's kind of complex. (I'll make sure to post John's excel spreadsheet soon).
4. Skip a few sneaky steps. If you're building a basement you can save some time by skipping a few steps. After the concrete is dry in the basement and between the floor going down see if there is any way you can put your tub and dry wall in the basement. This will save your plumber time and effort and it may save some of your walls by not having to navigate down the stairs and through framing. By having drywall materials placed in the basement before the main floor is put down it means less cutting and hauling down the stairs for the drywall dudes. Less time for them, means more money saved for you. Does that make sense?
5. Pinterest is not always friendly. Pinterest has literally turned into a smorgasbord of ideas. Just because an idea is cool doesn't mean it will be the coolest idea for a home. So I'm trying to minimize my overload of Pinterest in the home. I've incorporated a few fun "home ideas" while also realizing I don't need to put all 576 pins in my home. Could you imagine? Oi.
6. Being neutral is kind of like being Switzerland. And we all know the Swiss have great chocolate and killer Alps. We're nearing the stage of painting/setting cabinets/and laying down floors. I tried to pair darker floors with neutral walls and light cabinets. This in turn gives me the flexibility to accessorize with fun colors which I can trade out depending on the seasons or if it goes out of style. Remember friends don't let friends go color crazy on walls.
Well, there you have it. When it come to building questions, you'll have to ask John specifics whereas I'm well versed in carpet weights, cabinet styles, and which colors of paint pair well with circular sawn wood floors.