SHOP PRODUCTS
Houzz Logo Print
lizzy_410

August 2023 - How is your build going?

Liz888
8 months ago

Whether you are in the building, planning, or just-plain-dreaming-about it phases of home construction, this is the place for you! We are a kind group who share the joys and stresses, the mistakes and successes of this wondrous process.

Welcome! Glad you are here. (PS. We love pictures.)

Comments (128)

  • Kelly M
    8 months ago

    @chicagoans that is a solid view indeed, the sunsets are fabulous.




    I like to visit and help but living in that isolation is not our cuppa joe.

    That said, we watched elk on his 40 acres while we took a break. The grass is so high you really can't spot deer, but the game cams he placed in the bedding down brush always have plenty.

  • worthy
    8 months ago
    last modified: 8 months ago


    Sewer lines passed inspection.

    Now shooting in two loads of 3/4" clear gravel to cover. (The slinger operator is the man to the right.) Drain contractor checked and we're 39"-41" higher than the municipal drains. Now to nudge the City to get to work doing the hookup. They got most of our $55K+ fees more than two years ago! And they don't do connections over the winter, soon here. (Foreground is the three-car garage which will have to be filled to grade, tamped every foot.)

    The most expensive torturous part of this build is what no buyer will ever see...or care about.

    ***

    we watched elk on his 40 acres while we took a break

    A fox wandered across the street from me...and I realized it was so common here, I didn't even think to take a photo! Coyotes, too. But they're bolder...and bigger.

  • Related Discussions

    It's August 2014 -- How is your build going?

    Q

    Comments (150)
    Update on our front. We finally got the builder to finialize the spec/cost sheet to fit our budget. He was estimating some things way to high since this is a custom build and the first time he is doing this home. We were pre-approved on our loan so I took the final plans, spec sheet, cost sheet and signed contract to the bank yesterday. They will be starting the appraisal process now and it may take 2 weeks. They did throw a curveball our way though. They want us to have our well water tested prior to closing on our construction plus loan. That would be great it there was electricity to the well, but we had'nt had the new powerlines run yet. So I call my well digger and he said that he would take care of it for us, but he'll have to do a flush and put clorox down it first to make sure there is no bacteria since we had the well drilled 2-1/2 years ago. That's how long this house building process has taken us to get to this point. So hopefully the water test won't take long and we'll be able to truck right along. Prayers would be welcomed! With all that we're not even sure when we will break ground and our lease will be up the end of December and the cost to go month to month is crazy. So we may have to move in with my MIL which I don't think I can handle for very long. Our builder said 4 months from framing to move in but we'll be in the middle of a midwest winter so who knows how many weather delays we'll have. Everyones build and process is looking great and I can't wait to show our progress pictures soon I hope :)
    ...See More

    It's August 2017: How is your build progressing ?

    Q

    Comments (142)
    We picked out our counter-tops today and DH surprised me by really liking the soapstone that I casually pointed out, so it looks like we are going with soapstone after all! Framing took a pause today with all the rain, but we are hoping to still be under roof by the end of next week. We did meet with the builder at the site, and I pointed out some areas that I had concerns about and I was happy to hear that he also saw the same issues and he already has plans to get them fixed.
    ...See More

    August 2018- how’s your build going?

    Q

    Comments (179)
    So exciting, foyer/entry with polished tile just completed today and a little more progress in the kitchen. Their target is to complete all tile floors (floors only) including 5 bathroom floors, laundry and mudroom/garage entry by next Thursday; fingers crossed. My son who just spent the summer with our daughter in Whistler BC, stopped by 12:30am last night before continuing his drive to Las Vegas where he'll spend the winter. He had not seen recent progress in the home. We all decided to head to the site around 1am and stayed there till 2am. I switched several interior and exterior lights, we experienced extreme peace and quiet, watching light reflecting off a very calm sea from homes across the harbour while standing on the rear deck. Silly me, I did not take any pictures. It was an amazing view on a serene night with no sound of bugs, frogs or the wildlife in the area; we are really looking forward to moving there soon.
    ...See More

    September 2023 How's Your Build Going?

    Q

    Comments (141)
    Hello folks. We are installing fiber cement lap siding on our new home. Me n my beautiful wife. So although we move slower we can get er done. Hopefully we will get the corner n window trim started. On the inside we are getting all the wiring that needs to be done in the attic. About 80% complete. Then vapor barrier, sheetrock. We will blow in cellulose insulation in the cold attic. Near r-65-70. We have - r 21 rockwool fire n sound insulation in the walls. And adding 2" of pinkboard on the inside after we install the vapor barrier over the rockwool insulation. This will add another r 7 to the outside walls and provide a continuous barrier against heat transfer. A system used in northern regions of Switzerland. We have an oil burning drip stove in the living room running for heat until we get the utility room built and the boiler installed. And the water tank and indirect water heater. Right now we have a 1" pipe through the cement coming from the well pump. Again glad I can do most of the work. I bartered a snogo for hooking up the boiler. I paid 800 bucks for it 25 years ago and riding it since so good trade for me. We will continue to pick away at things and somehow they get done. We have each other and our family near.
    ...See More
  • Liz888
    Original Author
    8 months ago
    last modified: 8 months ago

    @laurel your place looks amazing! How does it feel to be at this stage of your build? Did your house turn out how you expected? better? Are you happy with your choices?

    @chicagoan So happy you are almost done! How do you feel? Looking great!

    @bmanning - sorry to hear about your setbacks. Hopefully it'll go smoothly going forward.

    I feel like we are stuck in the same phase for last 5 weeks. Still working on plumbing and electrical rough-ins. HVAC. is at a standstill as we can not figure out what set up we need for our house as it is long. We have a ME reviewing this and sorting it out with a proposal that we hope to have by next week.

    No pics since no progress - looking at plumbing rough-ins is not exciting.

  • worthy
    8 months ago
    last modified: 8 months ago

    looking at plumbing rough-ins is not exciting

    Sadly, I am more interested in the mechanics and structural aspects than decorating.

    BTW, check those rough-ins to be sure that the plumbers have not mixed up hot and cold. It's a frequent mistake as they often work from one side of the wall, forgetting that in the shower/tub things are reversed.

    ****

    Today's excitement: thickly sprayed tops of the footings. (Yeah, they missed one.) The former never heard of such a thing, despite it being a concern of leading building scientists for nearly 20 years now. It halts "rising damp"--the capillary action that can suck water up 10 kilometers in a concrete wall.

  • Kelly M
    8 months ago
    last modified: 8 months ago

    that's what makes me happy too, the nuts and bolts of it. I spend my evening hours picturing how I will get all the plumbing and HVAC through the joists. I need to remember to make notes :)


    EDIT: I got a picture of the footings after all the wood is in. He is getting a new stemwall design and rebar schedule drawn up for the ICF, so it will wait a bit.



  • worthy
    8 months ago
    last modified: 8 months ago

    ^^^^^^^^

    Nice wide footings.

    But unless the pic is deceptive, I'd be mightily concerned building so close to such a steep, already gullied slope.

  • Keen B
    8 months ago

    @Laurel C and @chicagoans Your homes are turning out beautifully. @chicagoans I almost got a chandelier like yours, but I needed at least two over island.


    @worthy I love the trees surrounding your build. So pretty.


    @Kelly M I agree, some of the decision making can be stressful, but it's fun to puzzle it all out and then see it succeed.


    @bmanning That stinks! I wonder if there is any sort of legal recourse on getting some reimbursement on wasted time and money...

  • Keen B
    8 months ago
    last modified: 8 months ago

    Back from the build site. I can never post anything but pictures when I am there. For whatever reason, my phone no longer plays well with HOUZZ. I type something, and if I go to space or return, it all disappears. I can use voice command, but cannot fix any errors or punctuate or it evaporates.

    I sanded and coated all the stair treads and risers...no photos.

    Kitchen cabinets finished being built and pieced together. (Yes, I am irritated that the floors are not papered, but so far, so good.)



    Inspo picture that I was trying to achieve. I think I came pretty close. (I'd love to pretend the design came from my own creativity, but no...I just fell in love with this kitchen!)

    Kitchen Sink · More Info


    I installed my mosaic in Primary shower. Wonky angle is an optical illusion.



    Stripped the old bits of gunky paint off 34 stair spindles. Before is on top. And then painted those and the newel post. No photos of paint job. (I'd never make a living at instagram, Lol. I never think about photo ops.)


    Found the perfect chandelier for foyer. Photos when installed!

    Whew, a productive visit.

  • chicagoans
    8 months ago
    last modified: 8 months ago

    @Keen B "I almost got a chandelier like yours, but I needed at least two over island." My designer saw that light in a design magazine, and every light I looked at afterwards was compared to it. We started calling it "the chosen one," so I got over my sticker shock and ordered it on a leap of faith because I never did get to see it in person. (Nearest showroom display was in Atlanta, and even that was a different finish.) But we saw several other lights from the same brand (Visual Comfort) and loved the quality, so we ended up getting several additional VC fixtures as well.

    @Liz888 "How do you feel? Looking great!" Thank you! I'm feeling a mix of really excited and a bit anxious, as every time we go over there's some small thing to add to the punch list. After some real disappointment with tile for our fireplace (and a costly lesson learned) I'm happy to say that we found an alternative that's much less costly and available just a few miles away. We purchased it already and I feel very relieved and excited about that!

    Today the garage flooring guy is finishing up the top coat for our epoxy floor. We have a 3 car garage that had a lot of pitting and several cracks in the concrete; he smoothed it all over on Friday and applied the flakes (not sure the right term.) My SO is especially looking forward to seeing it with the clear coat - that's his domain. :)

  • Kelly M
    8 months ago

    @worthy it is deceptive, a wide phone shot. The bank behind is the edge of the excavation and the upper bank is some of the sorted spoils. The fence line at the top of that picture is the same fence from the other side in this picture, between the RV and that big pine tree. It is almost at the top of a slope and the upper floor of the house would be visible in this frame.

    When we backfill, I have room to cut a 2% slope swale around the house and ~18" below an 8' wide deck that goes all around the first floor.

    I'll have to re-arrange a whole lot of dirt to make good driving for the forklift for setting the logs.



  • Kyla McSweeney
    8 months ago

    ooo @Keen B I love your cabinets and floor... so nice


    @worthy you would like my house facebook page, I posted a pic of our sewer pipe on Friday. It didn't get a lot of appreciation

  • Kelly M
    8 months ago

    "got our CO"

    That is music to my ears. Your house is indeed lovely.

    This is a general tip for the thread, when filling trim nail holes in wood finishes, always go a shade darker than the wood with the fill putty, It does not darken with age but the wood does, and light spots show up more readily than dark ones.

  • Laurel C
    8 months ago

    That's a great tip! Fortunately all of our trim is painted, so we have a bit of latitude with filling, but there are a few spots in the bitch panelling and cabinets that I may end up filling, and that's great info.

  • worthy
    8 months ago

    Kelly M Got it.


    Laurel C Definitely shot-worthy!


    When drivers move slowly around our courtyard, I figure they're scoping out their midnight shopping.

    Kyla McSweeney

    Since my Facebook page was evidently hacked, then removed, I stay away. (May Zuck choke himself out.)

  • chicagoans
    8 months ago
    last modified: 8 months ago

    After much disappointment (and lost money) with our originally ordered fireplace tiles, we found something we like much better, for much less cost! It went up this week and we're so happy with how it turned out!

    It has a cool wave texture, that is very subtle from a distance and more visible as you get close. The large format means fewer grout lines, which we appreciate. We love how it looks with our granite hearth (which is the same stone used for adjacent kitchen counters.)


    Close up with the hearth, which is dusty in this pic; it's black not grey.

    ETA: I know many people here dislike TVs over fireplaces. Our only other option was along a blank wall that is directly across from a wall with big windows; that location would have been full of glare and it would have limited our furniture place. So... we are happy with the TV placement!

  • Kyla McSweeney
    8 months ago

    That looks beautiful @chicagoans! You must be so excited. We also will have a TV over our fireplace.

  • A.gbwh
    8 months ago

    Not much to report in August. Our framing guys left for other jobs while we wait on windows (due to arrive in about a week and a half) we are GCing ourselves and harvest has officially started, so we are definitely moving at a slower pace compared to most. Concrete will be poured in garage Monday. I did finally find someone to make our doors. It’s been a year long search. We put the deposit down for our exterior doors. Again, way behind most. Framing is almost done and I’m just ordering doors. I can’t help it though, doing my best here with four kids under five! I put the deposit down for exterior trims, hopefully that’ll be here right after the windows. I’m expecting September and October to be very big months for us on the exterior. Stay tuned!

  • A.gbwh
    8 months ago

    Question - we are ordering our fireplace and chimney materials soon for our Rumford style fireplaces. I wanted black firebrick. Turns out the black firebrick is $17 a brick, the in stock colors are like $2 a brick 🫠. We found some firebrick stain, thinking about trying to stain the firebrick black. Anyone done this??

  • Janet
    8 months ago

    Chicagoans - looks beautiful. Our tv will also go above our fireplace… lol. It’s real life. We don’t live in magazines.

    Ashley - I have no experience ce with fire brick.

  • chicagoans
    8 months ago

    Ashley: at my last house we painted the fireplace brick with heat proof black spray paint, found at HD. In the fireplace I posted above the painters used brush on heat proof paint. Note: it smells very strong and you will want to have windows open! Also note: these are gas logs so I don’t think they get as hot as wood burning, not sure about that or if it matters.

  • earthlyepicure
    8 months ago

    @chicagoans It looks so good! We too are mounting our TV over the fireplace (a gas insert, not wood, as we can't install wood fireplaces where we live due to air quality). Originally I was thinking tile, or plaster -- but we decided to just do a hardie board (fire resistant) and a wood mantle. The upper portion where the TV will be is recessed a bit from the fireplace plane to help ensure heat doesn't affect TV as much (can reduce life I've heard). My cabinet guy is doing our "mantel"... looking forward to that.


    For us, our foundation is in. Framing to start after Labor Day (our framer, my builder's best, is going to Burning Man!). They're waterproofing the foundation today, and we'll start with plumbing roughs soon, and putting in gravel below basement floor...


    Finalizing plumbing orders... thinking about stone (know what we're doing, how much is TBD), and going to work on exterior doors and interior doors -- and hardware!


    Has anyone used FSB door hardware -- Franz Schneider Brakel?

  • HU-227031627
    8 months ago
    last modified: 8 months ago

    I am just moving my current kitchen to my dining room and, after that is done, ripping out the old kitchen. Nothing huge like what some of you are doing. I have met with a contractor, but we have not discussed price at all. I am still ironing out what is going into the new kitchen with the cabinet designer. Will he just give me a fixed price to do the job once I get the kitchen designed or how does this generally work? My cabinet people require that they install my cabinets. I will probably buy my countertops and backsplash from another firm.


    I am planning on buying the appliances through the cabinet designer. Is this a mistake? His prices appear to be in line with other big appliance sellers. I am buying integrated appliances (built-in) and this is a European kitchen, so it just seemed to make sense. The centimeter to inches thing is driving me nuts.

    Any tips?

  • Kelly M
    8 months ago

    embrace the centimeter. "this is a European kitchen" just go with it.

  • Chandllerin
    8 months ago

    Slow but steady progress this month. Siding is almost complete. We are missing 4 windows. 2 were missing from our order and 2 windows were the wrong size. The plumber finished up yesterday. HVAC came by this week. Things are moving!

    We also finally talked to a real person with authority at Comcast and that wire should be gone by this time next week.

  • Liz888
    Original Author
    8 months ago

    @chandlerin wow that’s fast. When did you start?

  • Chandllerin
    8 months ago

    @liz888 we broke ground end of April/early May of this year

  • chicagoans
    8 months ago

    Re: buying appliances through the cabinet maker: I have no experience with that, but I would want to know if it makes a difference should you ever have a problem and need a service call. Will you get all the receipts and warranty info?

  • chicagoans
    8 months ago

    Our garage floor was done and is curing for a few days. This is my SO’s domain and he’s happy. 😃

  • K M
    8 months ago

    Chandllerins post about comcast resonates. I finally have word Eversource is moving the electric pole. When, we don’t know. Meanwhile the inside people can’t get in while the septic people are working as you can’t get to the house between the big hole and the electric pole. Everything that could happen has in this build.

  • TDinNC
    8 months ago

    I love seeing everyone’s progress and learning from your experiences. Thank you all for sharing. Hopefully this is the last month where I won’t have any photos to share. We should have our permit in the next couple of weeks and ground should be broken very shortly after.

  • worthy
    7 months ago
    last modified: 7 months ago

    Our forms finally delivered on 21 Aug., work started on the 25th. Should be ready for pouring on the 30th. Re-bar all the way up and around on the 9ft. forms. Not helped by the formers tying the steel all by hand. The contractor knows about the speedy wire tie machines. But figures that his crew will destroy them, negating the benefits.

    A rare dry day!


    worthy build (late 20th C.)

    Pouring is no faster than block laying. But who wants to lay blocks in the hot sun??

    [OT: Note melanoma defying crew above vs. our current crew from St. Vincent and the Grenadines. Arab carpenters across the courtyard worked all summer in flowing white robes.]

  • K_ Dub
    7 months ago

    It’s been a long road. I’ve come to this site off and on over the past two years. Many have come and gone, broken ground and finished their build. We’re finally seeing progress but it’s slow. We’re building on a slope and the engineering took almost 9 months. Our GC is a nice guy but his staff is a mess. Horrible communication and customer service skills. Our cost has almost doubled and interest rates have gone through the roof. Seeing everyone’s progress gives me hope but sometimes it’s just too depressing. Feels like we are getting close. Shingles went up on the back of the house today, stone masons starting late this week.

  • worthy
    7 months ago
    last modified: 7 months ago

    ^^^^^^^^^

    Clear sailing from now on! Just don't agonize about the finishing details.

    I did one home from demo to occupancy in six months, including two walk-up basement rental units. But it was a dry summer build on an ancient sandy shoreline in an efficient municipality since taken over..

  • g m
    7 months ago

    We had demolished old house in April. Here is the current status with estimatesd completion in october. Great progress so far!



  • 2rickies
    7 months ago

    Great seeing everyone's progress! I've been swamped at work and it's been a while catching up on all these great photos!


    Any advice for the electric walk-through? Mine is coming up soon. I have to pick the fixtures I've been putting off deciding (the bathrooms). Also, I have to decide how many lights I want over the kitchen island. It's 9ft long, so I'm thinking 3 pendants.


    I found some cool lights at a site I was looking at, but none of them seem to work on dimmers. When I asked they told me ,I could get the version with a remote control dimmer? But all my other lights will be on wall switch dimmers, so that seems like a pain?


    According to my builder, our windows start going in next week. That will make it real!


    Here are a few recent shots:


    This is from the side that will be the main recreation area. Those wood posts in the center under the overhang are temporary.



    This is from the front. The garage in this image obscures most of what you see in the first picture, above.



    This is the back, but it's not taken from a great angle so kind of hard to see.



  • Liz888
    Original Author
    7 months ago

    @2rickies looking good! What’s your sq? It looks big!

    I forgot - looks like it’s connected by passway. Curious your vision when you designed the house. Is one wing for specific area and other wing separated for specific purpose? I love the concept!

  • earthlyepicure
    7 months ago

    @2rickies Ah, following your electrical walk through tips! I'm working on picking out recessed lights (Nora? WAC? Want do go good quality for price, not looking to go crazy but this is our hopefully for a long time house). Tips welcome! Bathroom lighting is fun -- simple sconces, or better yet, just a few recessed downlights over sink, wall wash toilet, shower area -- modern, clean.


    We're waterproofing the basement this week, framing starts next week. Just approved plumbing rough order. FUN!

  • K_ Dub
    7 months ago

    @2rickies One thing to consider about the pendants is the view from across the room. Our island is 9’ as well and we’re going with two larger pendants so as not to interfere with the view of the range hood.

    They delivered the stone for the front of the house today. Can’t wait to it come together.

  • 2rickies
    7 months ago

    Thank you for the tip, @K_ Dub. That's a good point. I think I'll ask the KD.


    My hood is a cabinet box, and the island is off-center. I'm wondering if I have 3 lights, the hood may actually fall between them, but if I have two, one of them may be directly in line with it. I also have the dinner table chandelier, which is centered on the hood, and for that I was thinking about a heracleum light because it wouldn't look too "solid." But the one I found for a reasonable price (didn't realize how $$ they would be!) doesn't use a wall dimmer, it use a remote control. I'm wondering if they're all like that. I think I'm going to make a separate about that; I'm wondering how much light they actually provide.


    @earthlyepicure, our recessed lights are WAC, and I went to see them at another house the builder was working on. I thought they looked good and unobtrusive. I think we have some Tech lights for the exterior. I like them because they're flush and sort of invisible, which makes sense for our setup. Also, all our exterior lights will be downlights to conform with Dark Skies requirements. (I would want that even if it wasn't a sort of "rule" in the county.) We'll have Haiku ceiling fans without lights. Luckily I don't have to decide on floor outlets in the living room yet because I have no clue what furniture I'll have.


    @Liz888 it's around 3600sf. It looks larger because of the roof, I think. It's 1-1/2 stories. One wing is the bedrooms and my office, that wing is 2-story, and the other wing is the kitchen/great room/mudroom and DH's office (we both work from home). The great room has a 13-foot ceiling, and there's nothing above it. The cantilevered roof comes out over the terrace that's off of the "public" wing. And yes, they're connected by what will be a transparent passageway. The idea is, because it's a farm in a rural area, it's supposed to resemble separate farm buildings. One will be stone from on-site, and the other will be nickel-gap siding.


    Ugh that reminds me, I have to choose the exterior paint color! Not ready! I'm thinking maybe a deep green. I want to look like a natural color and if it's on the darker side it won't stand out to much. The architect wants a dark gray because that will disappear. The roof will be gray metal.


    This is a pic I took of the kitchen cab door sample with a paint sample I chose for the island. The stone will be on one wing of the exterior. I wonder if a similar green would work for the exterior siding? (I got back the sample for the painted cabinets, and it's darker than it's supposed to be, so I'm waiting to find out if they can do a better job matching it.)




  • earthlyepicure
    7 months ago
    last modified: 7 months ago

    @2rickies do you know which WAC? Ocularc or FQ? curious - id like to see whatever i end up choosing in person, easier said than done 😂 !


    we are going to do some dark sky compliant visual comfort cube lights outside that i LOVE the look of. my builder did them on another house and they’ll accomplish what im going for! Lighting. Fun yet overwhelming!

  • g m
    7 months ago

    @chicagoans Your garage floor looks great. May I ask how much did it cost you? I am considering epoxy floor and am wondering if we have to do it now or wait for few months after the floor cures.

  • Janet
    7 months ago

    2rickies - I think the green you have would be lovely outside. There’s probably a lot of options that would be beautiful. I can’t wait to see it all!

  • Kyla McSweeney
    7 months ago

    @2rickies we have a light green, we were worried about fade with a dark color exterior. I love the light green.


  • chicagoans
    7 months ago

    @g m The garage floors were just over $6300. Unfortunately, since they've been installed we've started noticing several spots that are bubbling. We're very disappointed and I'm not sure what the remedy will be. (My SO wants them to grind it all off and start again with a different company - I'm hoping we can do something less drastic. It's in our GC's hands.) Note that this is an older garage and not part of a new build. Not sure if that makes a difference (they did fill cracks and pits ahead of time), or if it made a difference that they started the work during a stretch of 100* / high humidity days. Sigh.

  • g m
    7 months ago

    @chicagoans Thanks, that is helpful. Sorry to hear about your experience and plans for redoing the fooors. Will have to figure out the timing for a new garage.


    If anyone has experience, please share.

  • 2rickies
    7 months ago

    @earthlyepicure, it's an Ocularc model. I'll be interested to see what you get!


    @Kyla McSweeney, that's pretty! What color is that?

  • TDinNC
    7 months ago

    Good morning, all! It’s September but I don’t know how to create a link to the new month. Can someone please help? Thanks!

  • Kyla McSweeney
    7 months ago

    @2rickies It is Fairway vinyl siding in Sage.

  • worthy
    7 months ago