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Sunday, August 9, 2015

Pretty Upset Right Now...

We had our pre-settlement walk through on July 31st. So you'd think we would be close to closing. You'd think...

Since then my husband and our realtor have tried calling both the PM & SR. The PM phone states it's no longer taking messages and no one is answering at the model home. 

I've since received word from a few neighbors that the PM is no longer at our community and that calls were being placed last week as well as a neighborhood community page letting people know. WE NEVER GOT A CALL OR EMAIL!! Excuse my rant but the lack of communication from Ryan Homes is just awful!! This process is stressful enough because we live remote and for the PM to not even give our realtor a heads up during the walk through is just plain non- professional. 

On top of this, Homeside (preferred lender with NVR) is making this close a nightmare for us since we live remote. Documents after documents. You would think they would start this process 1-2 months before close but it started only 1-2 weeks prior to our expected close date. So yet, causing further delays!  Can you tell we are beyond livid??! 

So here we are trying to chase the monkey's tail at the same time it's delaying our close!!! Ridiculous. 

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Pre-Settlement Walk Through

With us being located in San Diego now our realtor, did our walk through for us. Thank God we have him. He has been three helping us every step of the way since we moved. 

On the exterior everything is together and complete with the exception of the two cottage gable fypon features which do not fit together as they should. The PM is working through figuring out why these don't fit and having the correct gable fypon features installed. Hoping ASAP before we close next week. 

He also has the electrician coming through on Monday to install the extra outlet at the end of the overhang in the gourmet island. We had requested this during selections so that when someone is sitting at the island they can plug in their phones, iPads, or laptops to charge or use on the island. 

The PM passed along some info that he hopes will help in marketing the home to our realtor. The SR is transferring all calls coming in wanting a Quick Delivery Home to our realtor as well. As soon as the gables are on a professional photographer will be out to take pictures & the house will be listed on the market.  Both the PM & realtor feel confident that we will be able to sell the home rather quick because of the upgraded/neutral selections we made in the home.

Here are some current pictures of the exterior and main level. 

(Gables stil need to be installed at peaks and accents on porch pillars)

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

1 Week Until Close...

Pre-settlement walk through this Friday. The exterior just needs the white gables at the roof pitches and white accents on the porch pillars. It's bittersweet that we are going to be selling this beauty. She really turned out beautiful. Listing it this weekend we hope!! 

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Close in 2 Weeks!!

Still LOTS to do inside & outside but here's an updated picture our realtor sent us. Needs black shutters, white gables, red door painted, accent pieces to the porch pillars. Roof to be replaced with oil bronzed metal roof as well. 

Monday, June 29, 2015

Say It Ain't So....

It's been awhile since I have blogged. The house is moving along. In fact, the siding and drywall are now up. Expecting pictures soon from our PM or realtor. 

The REAL reason I've been off-line is because we made a very hard & difficult decision. wasn't really that hard but hard enough to take a big leap of faith and flip this house once it's complete. 

My husband was offered to relocate and return to his previous job back in San Diego. It was hard to pass up. So, we said farewell to Philadelphia and we are RV'ing it across the country with our twin 2-yr olds (we are actually in Nashville right now!). 

We are excited about this next chapter in our lives and have every confidence our "new" house will be sold rather quick. So if you know anyone looking for a Quick Delivery Home please think of our home.  :-)

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

New PM & Playground Fun!

Well our PM resigned and we got a call that a new PM will be assigned to our community. Hoping it will be a smooth transition. Just trying to get a date on the books for our pre-drywall meeting next...

They are currently working on a trail that leads to a community park. It has a tennis court, basketball court, playground, BBQ grills with tons of picnic tables & benches. Plus a pavilion. I read there are some Sunday Concerts in the park during the summer. Could be a fun activity to do. Got some pictures of the twins playing there. They loved it!! 

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Upper Floor Framing...

The upper floor was done 2 days ago! Wow, in 2 days they got 2 levels done. First dig was only 21 days ago. Crazy fast!!

Monday, May 18, 2015

Friday, May 15, 2015

Progress...Poured Basement & Garage Concrete

Spoke with our PM yesterday and surprisingly the conversation went well. Hopefully this relationship will now turn for the better and blossom moving forward. He was very nice and cordial and offered answers to our questions and even said to call him if we had more questions. 

He updated us that concrete was being poured the following day and the lumber arrived. So I did a drive-by today and met two workmen. One was working on our garage & the other our basement. We joked about them not making any mistakes. Took a few pictures though and joked I was posting them all over Facebook. :)) Hoping to see framing start in a few days. 

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Breaking Ground as Peter Gabriel Sings "Digging in the Dirt"

We broke ground on Wednesday, April 29, 2015! 

3 days later.... 

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Pre-Construction Meeting

Update since our Pre-Construction Meeting:

Some good news....The SR was quick about contacting us within days of our meeting (she was actually out sick the day of the meeting so we had only had met with our PM. Note to others: best to have SR there if you discussed things during your selection process to be changed.)

RH granted us the approval to move our master bathroom vent out of the "water room". We also got approval to have the basement light that is currently at the entry ceiling walking down into the basement moved to the side wall as soon as you enter the basement.  

We still need to inquire with our SR about the shower glass company to have a frameless shower installed instead of the oil-bronze framed shower. I know many bloggers were able to do this for a bit more out of pocket. Any tips on how to go about this process would be appreciated. 

It's been a long time since we blogged but we really had nothing to write about since our close is scheduled for August and we just had our pre-construction meeting. Towards the end of this post we will outline our questions we asked so others can copy & print for their meetings. 

We, along with our realtor, met with our PM for the first time at this meeting. 

We'll be many people seem to rave about their PM with getting things they want, exceeding expectations on the communication end, etc. Well, we walked away feeling "blah" about our PM and the meeting.  

Let's begin with him not being prepared with all of our documents. We waited about 20 min. We wouldn't mind, but we had a relative watching our 2-yr old twins and she had commitments at a certain time. Then we discovered the PM had to leave at a certain time for his son. Towards the end we felt rushed. We didn't get through all our questions and when we asked if we could email him the remainder his response was, "Sure, but it may take awhile to get back to you". Not a good first impression. We also heard through talk in the community that he isn't quick to give Buyers updates. No weekly updates like we've been reading all throughout the blogs. And actually we've heard it can be weeks to hear from him & some have to contact him. If this is happening, we wonder why RH does not put two PMs in our community. There has been an influx in sales and, although I'm sure the PM is good at his job, only one person can handle so much at a time. This all being said, we are cautiously optimistic about working with our PM in the build process. 

All in all, the meeting was really just about going over all of our interior and exterior selections in greater detail. 

However, there were a few hiccups along the way. We asked for a few minor changes that we have seen other Buyers post about and receiving. The PM would not budge. These were:

1) The fan vent in the master bath is in the toilet room. The layout we picked has no window in the bathroom so how will all the moisture/condensation escape? We argued with him it makes no sense to have it in an enclosed space. Condensation film will always be on the mirrors. It'll take forever to vent out. He seemed to understand after awhile but made such a big deal about him never doing requests that risks his job. Come on!!! It's a freakin' air vent. And the location makes absolutely no sense. In the end we just said , "But you can ask, right?"  He said, "Yes".  We're doubting he'll ask and just come back saying its denied because he seems too busy for such a small request. 

2) Requested the glass manufacturer information so we could call to look into the gorgeous frameless shower it seems many Buyers are getting approval on & doing. Can someone please comment how you got approval & exact steps we need to take? Our PM was not going for it & said it would have to be after close. He never had any frameless shower installed at his home sites. We were trying to explain the Buyer calls the glass company and Buyer goes there to pick it out & pay out of pocket the remaining costs. Then the company installs it. He looked at us like we had 3 eyes. Never heard of this. Ughhhh. 

3) Requested a few of the switches in the Great Room be placed higher and the fireplace switch to be with the main switches. We have a 2-yr old twin boy who has a sensory disorder & he seeks out light switches and constantly turns them on & off. The Great Room light switches seem lower than usual to us and the fireplace is In between the fireplace and window. We fear our son will climb the window sill to turn on the fire place and the others he can reach and it'll literally be like a disco ball going off in the Great Room if it stays the way it does. He had absolutely no compassion for this request and stated its by code. putting it up a bit higher is breaking code? Ummm... Yeah. That was that. So we will have to look for light switch panel locks now. 

The only real good news out of the meeting was that we are supposed to break ground mid next week!!! Wow!!! But again, when we asked for him to contact us and tell us beforehand so we can try to be present to take pictures, he sort of made it sound like if he will remember to. So.... What do you all think about our PM? ;-)

List of our questions noted below. We didn't actually ask all of these but there are some we want our PM to get back to us on. 

Pre-Construction Questions

What inspections will be happening at each stage? Can we attend if they are scheduled?
Can we come by the weekend before the pre dry wall inspection to take pictures and take notes ahead of time?

Project Manager, do you have any vacations plans during our build that you will be unavailable?

What are your normal work hours?
Will you provide us weekly update as what’s being scheduled for the week and if we are behind and how much behind?


Can we get a copies of our property lines, floor plan, etc?
What is the length of our lot in the front, back, and sides?
Where will the houses next to our house be position at?
What is our back yard size?
What will be the grading of the backyard, can we adjust to make more flat?
Where if any will the electrical or cables boxes be on our lot?
Where is the Sewer line?
Where will the AC unit be located outside?
Where will the water meter and electoral meter be?
If water ponds in the yard (grass) will you fix this and up to how long after that grass is installed or closing date?
Is it a problem if we install a fence before the grass goes in?
What is the grading of the driveway and how long and wide will it be?
Will the Driveway be concrete or paved and when in the process of building is this done?


Will ALL the windows have screens?
What type of windows will be installed?
Are the subfloors nailed glued and or screwed? Is this everywhere?
Will the ceilings be textured or flat?
What paint will be on the walls? Can we pick color?
Is there a deadbolt on ALL exterior doors? (Basement, Front Door, etc.)
Will you change locks after closing?
Where is attic (garage and house attic) access? Can we move this? 
Where are the vents placed?
When do we point out the exact location of the cable outlets?
Do the windows keep sun rays from coming in? (i.e. tint or HE features?)
How will moisture and mold be prevented?
What will the interior doors looks like?
Where will the thermostat be placed?
Where are the hose bibs located? Are they inside or outside?
Do you guarantee the same quality as the model home?


Make sure TV placement is on fireplace. Can we change location? 
Where will recessed lights be placed?


What are the dimensions of the kitchen island and how will rough-in's for pendant lights be placed?
Can RH install pendant lights if we get them prior to closing?
Will we have pull out shelves in kitchen like the model?
What kind of door will be leading to basement (ie. Glass  door?)


Where are fans/vents located?
Where will the towel racks be placed? How many?
Will granite need to be sealed?
Do we get granite backsplash or is there a lip from counter? 
Can we do a frameless shower?


Is there insulation in the Laundry Room? If not, can we add it?
Will there be a light?
Does the floor of the laundry room have extra support?


How big will the windows be for the walk-out basement?
Confirm French door will be in the walk out basement? 
What lighting will be outside? Any in the back of the house?
How is basement protected from flooding?


Will there be a floor drain?
Is there a light that comes in the garage standard? Location?
Is the outlet in the garage on the ceiling and wall? 
Is there insulation in the wall between the garage and hallway as well as in garage?
Is the garage door insulated? 


What do the exterior lights look like? (was told they would be bronze)
Will they lay sod on any part of our lot or seed? 
Will sod be laid down before closing?
Will you be doing any landscaping? Is that HOA responsibility?
Can the lot be graded differently so we have more flat space?
How many feet from the street will the house sit?
Will there be stairs leading to the front door? How many?
When can we drive on the driveway?
Confirm that driveway is asphalt? 
When will the sidewalk be laid in front/side of our home? Or repaired if ruined?
Are there standard outlets on the exterior? Confirm additional outlets for exterior. 
Do we get to pick the style of front door?
Can the left over materials such as flooring (tile, carpet, wood, laminate) paint (wall, trim, front door), and siding be left in garage for us to have in case we need later?


Can the Fireplace Light switch be part of the main light switch and not next to fireplace?
Remove items if we are moving to cut cost down? 

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Actual Model Home Pictures of the Ravenna Elevation M Cottage Style

For a fellow blogger's request building a Ravenna Elevation M Cottage Style , below are pictures from my neighborhoods model home. 

Irish Thistle siding
Sandy Tan shaker siding
Bronze metal roof
Black shutters
White trim 
(Forget the name of the door but it's a dark plum color) 

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Some Delays

Nothing new to report. There's been some delays since our MSS meeting to finalize and submit all of our selections. There was a glitch in their computer system on adding/removing options and our SR had to wait for the fix from corporate. Plus, we had been waiting on final numbers. We just weren't happy with this process at all. RH should provide net sale after "each" change or custom request. It's only fair to the Buyer. The whole process of adding and removing selections can be very taxing having to calculate & recalculate. It would be nice if RH provides a breakdown each time to ensure numbers reflect each other (RH and Buyer). We feel RH falls short in this department. It's not easy for the Buyer and it's not as simple as someone saying "Oh, just take this number and add this number and take out this number and so on..."  This can cause Buyers to miss things and these "things" could be an error on RH part. That's what happened to us. Thank God we caught it but definitely Buyer Beware to check and double-check your numbers! Do not sign ANYTHING until you are both on the same page. 

On a happier note, we've recently moved to our temporary housing. Good news is it's a short drive to the new digs so once they break ground we can keep a daily eye on things. But, the transition has been heart-breaking for our 2-yr old girl twin. She is not doing well with naps or bedtime. Any advice on moving with toddlers to help the transition go smoother is much appreciated. I'm fearful for our next move in August once the house is complete. 

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Know Your Numbers

For anyone going through this process of a new home, it is an exciting time for sure. We have one recommendation and that is that you need to keep track of the changing numbers from the initial meeting from all the options you may choose, to flooring, guardian, any custom work you are contemplating... Also, ask detail about the appliance packages and any differences between the standard package and upgrade since the standard most likely includes a slide-in stove and if you want a cooktop then you could be out of luck..know your numbers because you can get lost in all the changes and additions, and always push to have the sales rep to give you the net sales price not just the gross.. Truth be told,  the more you know your net number the better you are in tracking to the right number you really need to know.  

Monday, January 26, 2015

Exterior Selections

Ravenna Elevation M Cottage Style 

Above are from the model home. We chose different colors. Our Selections in a reverse plan as above will be: 

Siding: Sandy Tan
Shaker siding (at peak above garage & at 1 bedroom): Pebble Clay
Stone: Mountain Fieldstone
Shutters: Black
Metal Roof: Dark Bronze
Door: Fiery Brown (looks like a dark red) 
Trim: White

Not the best raw images of our selections (Pebble Clay shaker color wasn't available at our community for pictures) 

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Another Cry for Help...Stoned!!!


After writing my initial post about stone selection, we drove to another RH neighborhood about 25 min away to look for Fieldstone Shade Mountain & Cut Cobblestone in Autumn. Unfortunately, the Cut Cobble wasn't available in the community as a choice so we are hoping our SR can get us a picture of this on a real house when we make our selections tomorrow. 

However, we were pleasantly surprised with the Fieldstone Shade Mountain. We found it on many homes within this particular community. For some reason, no one has used it yet in our community. I have a feeling it's because the sample in the model shows it to being an all grey fieldstone. Not a lot of variety in color. BUT...this is WAY off the sample then seeing it in person. We think it will look great with our Sandy Tan siding & Pebble Clay shaker siding & black shutters.  Still waiting to see if we can get the Bucks County stone in my vision house, from fellow blogger, Melissa, but if not, then we will agree with Fieldstone Shade Mountain. Below are some images of this stone if others are trying to search for it. It's actually quite nice!! Looks are totally deceiving from those 12x12 samples! 

Fieldstone Shade Mtn (left) & Cut Cobble Autumn (right)
Bucks County stone on the bottom house

Two houses with Fieldstone Shade Mountain (do these look like the same stone as above left??! We really thought it would be much more grey tones.)

We are ***almost*** sure of our siding and shaker siding for the house. BUT... We can't really find a stone we really like OR we can't find what it will actually look like on a house! I've been looking at people's blogs and really like the Bucks County stone but it isn't offered in our community. Our choices are:

1) Fieldstone Shade Mountain
2) Cut Cobble Lehighton
3) Cut Cobble Autumn
4) Ridgestone Chardonnay
5) Shadow Ledgestone Buckingham

We are trying to steer away from the stones that seem to have a lot of reds or greens in them (#2, 4,& 5 seem to have these just from looking at the samples). 

If anyone reading this can post a picture of Fieldstone Shade Mountain or Cut Cobble Autumn I'd greatly appreciate it. Here are the Ply Gem images but I really want to see them on actual houses & can't find any on-line.



We are trying to determine which stone will compliment our exterior colors best. As of now, after griping about no selection for darker green or slate blue exterior siding, we are now leaning towards a traditional style house with Sandy Tan siding & Pebble Clay shaker siding, black shutters, white trim, and a dark red door... oh, we will also have a metal roof with the Ravenna M Elevation (likely black or the black/bronze). I suppose we are a little nervous going with Irish Thistle or Spanish Olive as exterior choices for fear in years to come that these colors will look dated & we'll need to replace it. We are pretty secure on our decision now but, of course, things could change in the coming days. ;-) 

Below are the colors together that we like as I mentioned. It's a different elevation but you get the concept of the traditional colors we are thinking about to tie it all together & unfortunately the stone is not available...So anyone please help find real-life examples of the stones I am seeking!! :-)))