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Anyone with good advice on building a house?

Discussion in 'Questions and Answers' started by Unlucky 13, Apr 23, 2017.

  1. Unlucky 13

    Unlucky 13 Just a Guy Club Member

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    You're absolutely right about the domino effect. We've been dealing with it for months. And despite him insisting that we're their number one priority, I do get the feeling that other projects are taking guys away. They said a few months ago that they're building 20 houses this year, so in many ways they've been waiting to finish this or that on our house to move on to something else. We're sure that's why guys have been working weekends on ours, but things have still slowed way down.

    They did the final draw from the construction loan a couple of weeks ago, so the money's been paid. We were offered to be able to move into the house with the exterior unfinished, but my wife and I don't want to, especially with our two young girls. Its dangerous around the equipment outside, and there are a number of men there that we just don't know.

    We're going to wait until Wednesday evening and see where we stand. If it doesn't look like it'll be done by Saturday, then we'll have another conversation.
     
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  2. cuchulainn

    cuchulainn Táin Bó Cúailnge Club Member

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    Then you need to threaten to sue him. He's costing you money, mental anguish, and has been paid under a contract he is in (or should be) violation of.

    Even if you don't, that will get his attention, not just cause of the possibility of a lawsuit, but also for the hit that his reputation would take. Builder's thrive on that. Also, leave public bad reviews on his facebook, HomeAdvisor, etc...

    You can also threaten to hire ppl to finish the work and make him cover the costs. Either way, you'll have his attention. Most likely he has other builds where he's going to make more money and he's focusing his resources there.

    Sucks that ppl jerk you around on what's most likely been a lifelong dream for both you and your wife.
     
  3. Unlucky 13

    Unlucky 13 Just a Guy Club Member

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    Thats what my parents suggested when I talked to them yesterday, and what they would be doing. But.....its the polar opposite of what my style is. And the builder has been good through most of the process, and most of the delays aren't his direct fault until recently. Its been frustrating, but its not a case where we feel we've been jerked around until recently. I would really rather just have it done and not butt heads. If this week passes and its not though, we're going to insist on a face to face Monday morning and air some frustrations.
     
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  4. cuchulainn

    cuchulainn Táin Bó Cúailnge Club Member

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    You're seriously being too nice and amicable. Give him a hard deadline and tell him no more BS. If his subs are jerking him around, that's on him, not you. He needs to step up and get this done and you need to tell him so. I'd be in his *** every other day. Not unreasonable for you to be doing the same.

    JM2C.
     
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  5. danmarino

    danmarino Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    First, let me say I'm sorry you're going through this Lucky. This should be a stressful time, but a fun stress and not a bad stress.

    I agree with cuch here Lucky. The builder is taking advantage of your kindness. It seems as if they stretched themselves too thin and you're the nicest guy so you're getting the shaft. I wouldn't wait until Monday. I'd call him today and give him specific examples like you've given us here and tell him that you want it finished. And if it's not finished in the time you want you will find someone else to complete the work on his dime and you'll make sure to find the most expensive people around.
     
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  6. eltos_lightfoot

    eltos_lightfoot Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    I have had to get tough with the last two contractors I have used. Otherwise they are always going to other sites and not finishing mine.

    In your case, if you still had the leverage of the money, I would think you could be patient. But given that they already got paid? I think you might have to get tough.
     
  7. ToddPhin

    ToddPhin RIP Phinsational Luxury Box Club Member

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    Sooooo your solution..... is to rape the contractor until he gives in?? :lol: Cuch doesn't mess around!
     
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  8. Unlucky 13

    Unlucky 13 Just a Guy Club Member

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    HAHA! I spoke with the contractor briefly this morning, after I politely (passive-agressively) demanded keys to the house yesterday. A lot of work was done yesterday, and more is happening today. I pushed him on a few of the lingering issues, and he swears that most of them will be taken care of in the next few days, while the only ones that won't have materials on order that will be in ASAP. Did I mention how the shower doors were 11 inches too tall, even though we have nine foot ceilings? How is that even possible?

    He also swore that we'll be able to move everything that we want into the house this weekend, which is important because we need to re-up with our storage unit by Friday if not. I'm letting his guys work today without getting in the way, and then heading over to the house to take a look around this evening.
     
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  9. cuchulainn

    cuchulainn Táin Bó Cúailnge Club Member

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    [​IMG]
     
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  10. cuchulainn

    cuchulainn Táin Bó Cúailnge Club Member

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    Good for you. That said, what's "a lot of work"? Sounds like more BS. Demand a detailed daily report with hours spent per item. It's not like this is a removation where they're running into issues with a 50 y/o house. This should be cake.

    Don't go prevent. Keep blitzing.

    And no, I've never heard of shower doors being a foot over size. Someone must've wrote it down wrong. Even with 9' ceilings, you still would would have to allow for the the shower base and room at the top. Maximum height would be apprx 97", not 119". Maybe they added a foot instead of subtracting it in error, which does happen from time to time when people aren't paying attention to what they're doing.

    And free feel to let him know that you'll be handing him the bill for the storage unit Thursday evening if the house isn't ready.
     
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  11. cuchulainn

    cuchulainn Táin Bó Cúailnge Club Member

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    Lucky, you moving in tonight? 8am tomorrow? What's the status? lol...
     
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  12. Unlucky 13

    Unlucky 13 Just a Guy Club Member

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    We've been taking stuff over to store in the basement the last couple of days. Total move Saturday and Sunday for our stuff.

    But....were still crossing our fingers that the last few things get finished tomorrow. Meeting with the builder there at 630pm tomorrow night. Well see!
     
  13. cuchulainn

    cuchulainn Táin Bó Cúailnge Club Member

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    Nice. Bout damn time.

    If your builder gives you any flack buy Cash a 6 pack of PBR and tell him the builder hates God, guns, Van Halen, gold chains, and Firebirds. :shifty:
     
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  14. cuchulainn

    cuchulainn Táin Bó Cúailnge Club Member

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    Lucky, you guys all moved in? Status? Pics?

    Lol....
     
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  15. Unlucky 13

    Unlucky 13 Just a Guy Club Member

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    Moved in and exhausted, yes after working on it since Friday night, We've got most of our stuff put away. Sadly , I can't figure out how to link pics without a pc. No home internet at the moment. I'll put them up when I can. Working on my phone exclusively right now.
     
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  16. cuchulainn

    cuchulainn Táin Bó Cúailnge Club Member

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    Lucky, where ya at with those pics? lol...
     
  17. Unlucky 13

    Unlucky 13 Just a Guy Club Member

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    I'll let you know as soon as comcast feels like hooking me up, lol.

    My yard is a mudhole too. Tons of rain, and more on the way. Makes it tough to walk around and take more pics. Still putting stuff away to boot. But I promise I'll have them eventually.
     
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  18. cuchulainn

    cuchulainn Táin Bó Cúailnge Club Member

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    Lol... just giving you hard time. That said, sup with Comcast? They should've been ready to connect you a week ago.
     
  19. Unlucky 13

    Unlucky 13 Just a Guy Club Member

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    The good news is that we've been told that were defiantly able to get connected. But apparently were down the list and have to wait our turn. I'm calling tomorrow to politely pester them again.
     
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  20. danmarino

    danmarino Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    How's the new house, Lucky? Does it feel like home yet?

    We broke ground last week. The basement is all dug out and they will be pouring the walls starting this week.
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2018
  21. Unlucky 13

    Unlucky 13 Just a Guy Club Member

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    Things are good. We've been in the house for almost four months now. For the most part, everything is really solid and exactly what we wanted. My contractor finally sent guys last week to cut a window in the basement that they had forgotten when the poured it. We'd been waiting on that for a long time. But the weather in our area has been wetter this year than almost any on record, and he's been behind in all of his jobs.

    We still have a punchlist with about a dozen things left that need to be done, but we're patient. The house is totally livable without them. My next project is going to be seeding the lawn again so that we hopefully have some real grass in the spring. But since its rained 2-4 times every week since about March, that mud makes that hard.

    Good luck with yours, and I would keep a close eye on the guys as they do the foundation to make sure that it turns out the way that you want it! Its hard to get them to alter it after the fact.
     
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  22. danmarino

    danmarino Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    Awesome. Sine the day they broke ground I've been out there over my lunch every day. lol...I asked the guys if me being there looking over their shoulder bothered them and they all said it was great and they all did the same thing when they built their houses...lol
     
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  23. Unlucky 13

    Unlucky 13 Just a Guy Club Member

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    While we were building ours, we lived next door with my in laws, so I was on site all the time too. I caught a number of things that I wouldn't have otherwise, had I visited once a week or less.
     
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  24. danmarino

    danmarino Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    Friends of ours built a house a few years ago. After everything was framed my buddy was walking through the house with the plans. He noticed that something looked weird between the garage in real life and the way they were drawn on the plans. Turns out that the garage was 6 FEET shorter than it was supposed to be. The contractor had to tear down half the house and change the foundation. lol....It was a HUGE screw-up.
     
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  25. danmarino

    danmarino Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    I thought about creating a new thread, but it seems Lucky's house is pretty much done, and this is the same topic. Lucky, if you want me to start a new thread just let me know.

    Anyhow, I think with what Lucky has written and what I add could potentially help someone else if/when they decide to build their own home.

    My wife and I purchased our lot a number of years ago. About 1 year ago we started the design process. The plans were finalized about 1 month ago. We would think we were finished and then we'd brainstorm and decide that something wasn't right. A year is relatively long, or so we are told, in regards to designing a house. However, I think it was a good idea for us to not only take our time on the design, but also own the lot for awhile before building. I think we had time to work through any what-ifs and (currently) there is nothing we feel like we would do differently.

    We had a cold snap here so the builders thought it would be best to hold off on the footings and foundation pours last week. They are finishing up the footings today and pouring concrete tomorrow.

    upload_2018-11-15_13-4-44.png

    upload_2018-11-15_13-5-16.png

    upload_2018-11-15_13-5-38.png
     
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  26. Unlucky 13

    Unlucky 13 Just a Guy Club Member

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    Yeah, man. Totally cool with me! I started the thread so that I could have a conversation about the topic with others who have done the same thing, so please!

    That's one heck of a big foundation hole! And your dirt is a hell of a lot better than the orange garbage we have here, lol.
     
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  27. danmarino

    danmarino Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    Thanks dude. Yeah, this soil is nice and rich. We even have a natural spring on the back line of our property with a larger creek about 300-400 yards back further. Tons of deer and turkey. Kids are going to love it. And we've got 5 kids so a big house is kind of needed. Well, maybe not needed, but greatly appreciated. lol

    I'm about to drive out to the lot and watch them pour the footings. Should be pretty interesting.
     
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  28. danmarino

    danmarino Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    All the footings are poured. Walls should be going up today through Wednesday.
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2018
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  29. Surfs Up 99

    Surfs Up 99 Well-Known Member

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    Wow! That sure is such a pretty area you live in!
     
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  30. danmarino

    danmarino Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    Thanks Surfs. Our lot backs up to a 1100 acre nature preserve so it, hopefully, will always be that way. :)
     
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  31. Unlucky 13

    Unlucky 13 Just a Guy Club Member

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    Same here. Our property is bordered by hundreds of acres of woods and farmland, with only three other houses along a stretch about a mile long.
     
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  32. danmarino

    danmarino Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    Awesome...Got to love the privacy and the woods for the kids.
     
  33. danmarino

    danmarino Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    These were taken on Friday. These are the basement wall forms being placed. They should be completed tomorrow and then cement poured on Thursday.


    upload_2018-11-27_14-40-54.png


    upload_2018-11-27_14-42-2.png
     
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  34. danmarino

    danmarino Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    Pouring the walls today!

    upload_2018-11-29_10-59-10.png
     
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  35. danmarino

    danmarino Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    So I talked with the owner of the concrete company today.

    He said that they will blanket the walls and keep the forms up until Monday. He said they usually don't keep the forms up that long, but this will help retain heat (it's in the high 30's right now) and ensure that the concrete gets to the required 500 psi before the weather gets below freezing. I think he's doing this to ease my mind a little. I've been pushy with my questions and the demand to not pour if we don't have to. That 500psi mark should happen before dark.

    I also requested another company come out and do random sampling of the concrete before they poured it (It took about 15 trucks) to ensure that each truck was filled with concrete at between 65- 70 degrees F and that each mix was consistent with the additives etc. Also, they will take random core samples after it's poured to ensure that the temps etc are proper. It cost me a little extra money, but I think it will pay for itself in me being able to relax and not have to listen to my wife. lol

    Once they remove the forms they can start framing. They will wait until the roof is on before they pour the basement floor foundation. The owner said that with the plumping and electrical for the basement still needing to be done that it will just be too difficult to pour the slab before it gets really cold. He said that since it won't hold up progress to wait, it would be better to wait until the spring/summer. I agreed.

    So, starting next week I should start seeing some framers out there. My builder said it will take them through the Spring and into the Summer to finish (weather depending). Then it will be another 8-10 months for the electrical, plumbing, and finishes throughout.

    My wife and I, along with our builder and his wife, are going to Vegas in February for the International Builder's Show. Our builder said that he goes every other year or so and he thinks my wife would really enjoy it and get some great ideas for interior stuff. I agreed because I want to gamble...lol
     
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  36. Unlucky 13

    Unlucky 13 Just a Guy Club Member

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    I was very surprised that when my house was built, the forms were only on for less than a day and a half. I had expected that it would be much longer than that, but everything turned out just fine.
     
  37. danmarino

    danmarino Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    What were the temps when you poured?
     
  38. Unlucky 13

    Unlucky 13 Just a Guy Club Member

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    Cool. It was March. I'd say the 50s or 60s probably.
     
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  39. danmarino

    danmarino Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    So all of the basement walls have been poured and the backfill is nearly complete. The backside of the house still has a little bit to go in regards to backfill because we built up the house a little and the basement walls are 12' high. As you look at the house the right, back side is where the walkout will be so those back walls are lower. The 3 stall garage is on the left, the round part jutting out will be the kitchen nook. Again, this is the basement level, so the kitchen will be up higher and then there is a 2nd story that will go over the middle portion of the house.

    The basement slab will be poured this Friday. And they will start framing any day now.


    upload_2018-12-11_14-4-12.png
     
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  40. danmarino

    danmarino Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    Here are the front and rear elevation plans to better get an idea of what you're looking at:

    upload_2018-12-11_14-9-26.png
     

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