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Saturday, January 10, 2015

Questions for Readers Before We Sign!

Hi All!

Please help in answering some questions you may have already inquired about with your SR. We are supposed to sign and commit to the house on Monday but I think it will have to get pushed to Tuesday since Monday we are scheduled for our flooring appointment.  It would be appreciated if anyone can help answer some last questions for us:

1) We chose a 'House Bronze Finish'. Does this include the cabinet hardware in the kitchen and all bathrooms? I don't see an option for just cabinet hardware and I would like to decline any option & find my own hardware. Would they credit us some of the money?

2) We currently have 'Trim Package 3'. But I thought I read somewhere that Trim Package 2 is the same but just a little shorter on the shadow-boxing/wainscot in the dining room. Can anyone tell me the difference and is it worth saving an extra $500 to bump down to Trim 2?

3) Walkout Basements: Did you have a choice between a slider or double doors and was this an extra charge? We are hoping we do not need to pay for a door since you must have a door for a walkout basement and hoping that a door is standard in walkout lots. 

4) Elevation M: Any exterior lighting included since this is an upgraded elevation?

5) Soap dish in master bathroom: Sooooo '70s.... When requesting to not have this (or requesting a ledge there instead), is there a $250 change order fee for a stupid soap dish to be removed!!? ;-)

6) Anyone have experience requesting rough-ins for above the gourmet island for a kitchen chandelier or pendant lights? Did it get approved? 

7) In Ravenna Elevation M, if we opted for carpet in the family room, where does the carpet start since the space is an open concept from the kitchen? Also, how did the transition from carpet to hardwood in the kitchen look? Pictures are helpful too. :-)

Thanks everyone!! 


  1. Check your MSS sheet- there should be a selection for cabinet hardware. That can be removed. You should go through your MSS line by line and discuss it with your husband. We glossed over the bath #2 in the second bedroom- something we would have added had we paid attention.

    Trim #3 also includes a chair rail, 2 piece crown molding as well as the waincot in the dining room. If you are handy and in to DIY, you can upgrade the trim your self
    Ask MT what is the standard for the walkout. The developer wants a certain look for the community, so I am almost sure you will get a door with glass panes. No extra charge

    All the elevations come with exterior lighting, except for flood lights in the back

    Removal or addition of a soap dish is done at flooring. Bob kindly told us we didn't want a soap dish, so I don't think we had a choice in the matter, lol. No change order fee

    Did not add pendant lights (my gourmet island was a last minute add on item) but I have read where quite a few bloggers had this done

    I don't have pics of the last part as I did hardwood throughout the first floor (basic carpet upstairs until my boys get older then we will upgrade) but from the few models and pics I saw, most will start/ end at the invisible line with the morning room on the family room side. If that makes sense to you.

    1. Thanks! I completely missed the hardware last night looking at the MSS but see if now. We've been reviewing this 'Bible' each night. :-))

      I think we may go over today. I'll ask MT about trim package b/c I thought I read in another blog the only diff between the two was height. But if it's what you stated we will stick with #3. I have plans down the road for the hallway & stair walls but not right away. ;-)


  2. All good questions but I think I can only help with the first 2. Here are my thoughts: 1. I do not think they put cabinet hardware on as an included option, so there wouldn't be a credit but you at least can pick out your own. We also have the bronze and we had to pay for the hardware.
    2. We got trim package 2 and it does not include the shadow boxes. I suppose it could be a regional difference or maybe that is specific to the Ravena.

    Hope that helped a little.

    1. Thanks Matthew. I think for the trim you could be right it being a regional package. I will confirm today. Thanks again!

  3. Hi! 1) You should ask your sales rep about cabinet hardware for the Ravenna. For the Verona,our contract automatically added the cabinet hardware at no charge. I'm sure they won't mind if you remove it. 3) We weren't given a choice. There are no sliders for basement walkouts, or morning rooms, in our community. Patio doors only. No extra charge. 4) For elevation M, we get upgraded exterior lighting, garage and front entry doors. Ryan calls it the Resort Facade. This almost got left off of our contract and had to be added to a change order to correct! If you want a close up of the lights you will have, look at the elevation M model pictures on my blog. Looking at your Ravenna Elevation M pictures, they are the same exterior lights. 5) We requested that the soap dish be removed. They removed it no issues or charges. 6) We were able to get two pendants added over our island peninsula in the kitchen without additional approval. The sales rep just added two additional light prewires to a change order. 7) Your SR can give you a floor plan that shows were all of your room transitions are. This is very helpful.

    1. Thanks Christina. Very helpful comment. I believe our SR was telling my husband a basement door would be charged but she was verifying this. The morning room patio door has no change so why not the basement since we are on a walk-out lot?! I really hope there is not an added charge. Crossing fingers!

      I completely saw the Resort Facade last night on the MSS and it wasn't checked. I even asked my husband what that was & he didn't know. I'll make sure to check it & inquire about it when we go there today. Thanks so much!!

      When you requested the pendant light pre-wiring was this considered a 'rough-in' at $250 each? That's what I see as an option on the MSS. Sounds steep for each pendant light. Please clarify if you don't mind. Thanks so much!

    2. The cost was $175 per ceiling light pre-wire. The line item on our MSS is called Light Prewire Ceiling. We thought it was worth getting it done and not having to install the electric, fix drywall and paint after the fact.

    3. Hi Christina, so it was $175 per pendant light you mentioned. Was this just the charge or was this considered a custom and you had to pay $175 for a custom? I feel like my SR is trying to tell me it's custom & each custom request for is is $250. Then we pay what they quote us.

  4. Sterling, can't help with your elevation or trim package, I never got any of that.

    The soap dish you will talk to your carpet guys on monday about that. In my case anyway, the flooring people did the shower too and you can just ask to see ledges instead of the soap dish, those are the people to ask. It wont be a change order at all.

    Pendants you may have a problem IF you already have the wiring done, and I think you do. The recessed lighting is prob not centered over your island, since really there is no island there yet. So they would have to lay out your island, place the pendants where you want them, and insert lighting there. I know there are some folks in my plan that love our pendants but since they did NOT place for them, an electrician has to cut into the ceiling drywall and do some drywall work also. :( So I would talk to your PM like NOW before they start to drywall if that's what you really want!! Now in my case if the electricians had NOT been done yet my PM would have never charged me, but sounds like your plan is much more strict. I never paid for this request.

  5. DWTimes2, we are just really in the beginning phase. No PM assigned yet. Actually , we only put a deposit to hold the lot and our 7-day commitment date is this tomorrow but it's gonna have to get moved to Tues bc we are at our flooring appt tomorrow (better anyways so we have a true number on these darn floors). So, I'll make sure to request this pendant light wiring as soon as possible. I'm going in with a ton of questions. :-)) Thank you!

    1. Sterling, OMG I am so sorry, I knew that!!! Im so embarrased. Its early, and got you confused with another blogger. MY BAD !

      Ya so you are SOLID, you are in good shape, keep doing your homework about what you really want!@! Youre doing great, i did the same thing, I asked my fellow bloggers a thousand questions, cause once they start building, it gets tougher to make changes, cant wait to see how your flooring goes tomorrow.

      Oh do you want that granite over hang into your morning room? My kids sit there all the time while I do dishes I love it, they are on the high stools. And the overhang on the island too for additional seating.

      Oh the transition of hardwood and carpeting, they do such a nice job with the transition. It looks flawless.

      I know you are super nervous for tomorrow, but TAKE YOUR TIME, DONT RUSH!! And it will all work out, you wont walk out with everything you want, but do we ever??? It's not set in stone either, you have time to make changes with them also (not sure of time frame though).

      Lay out your choices on the floor, take pics so you can keep looking at them.

      Oh for your master too, ask about the listello (the fancy trim), i think the cost of that was sooo low, it was so worth it, but I HAD to ASK.

      You CAN go outside of the RYAN ROOM and sometimes doesnt cost any more, so ask about that too.

      It all moves fast and then comes to a HALT for like 2 months, so you will have time to breathe and soak this all up. It will great, the process is FUN, when you look back in a few months you will realize it :)

  6. Haha!!! No worries!! You have a huge blog list. :-))

    Do you get notifications when your bloggers you are following make a new post? I'm not getting those or notifications if I leave a comment or a question on their blog & they write back.

    Thanks for the flooring tips. Definitely keep that in mind. I have a list of questions. Does your blog have the carpet/wood transition by chance I can take a look? We are on the fence with the family room. Hardwood in that area is pricey but if we carpet it, it's gonna be a nicer level carpet with a design so that will be pricey too (but not as much as wood).

    I was looking at your kitchen granite overhang. Our model shows that in our morning room but I'll verify we get that overhang. It has it also on the island for 2 stools. So are you meaning request more overhang on the side to add an extra stool? I asked that the other night and they told me they don't do that. :-( I'm asking our SR though again today because it was someone else who told us.

    Keep you posted!

  7. Not much I can help with, but I will do what I know. :) 1) would be best left for the SR. We did specifically have an option to select the hardware, but did not. 2) the only difference for us was the lack of shadow-boxes in the dining room. Everything else carried over. I thought that was a win and a good reason to select #2. 5) ask your flooring people this question. I don’t think we had a change order fee, but it was extra to get the ledge IF offered with our selected tile. 6) Easy to get lighting rough-in’s place above island, it’s just a selection off the sheet and you tell them how many you want and in what locations in the house. In your case: over the island. :) No approval needed. Good luck!

  8. 6) We got the pendant roughins no problem. They actually forgot to install them and we caught it during predrywall. So then the electrician came in and took care of it. Here was the problem, during predrywall of course your island isn't in. So we got drywalled and then the island went in. Guess what? They ended up in a completely ridiculous place basically lining up to the end of the counter. So of course we told them to move them and the PM agreed. Do the holes had to be cut and ceiling patched, but that's not a huge deal.

    1. James, so your pendants weren't custom? I feel like my SR is telling me I need to sign for this custom. I'm worried she's gonna charge me $250 (that's the cost for requesting customs in my community). Please offer your experience so I can be prepared when I go over there. Thanks!

  9. Thanks! Totally requesting 2 pendant light rough-ins!

  10. So I contacted SR to request granite over-hang & the pendant lights. These requests are "custom" I'm told. So for those who only needed to check box on your MSS, you are lucky!! Looks like I'm shelling over $250 per request.

    My SR wrote back:
    Yes, we don’t have that as a selection. Look at your full MSS. I am not hiding anything from you. This person you are speaking to could have purchased in another state….another division…. Another community. We make changes to our MSS’s regularly across divisions. Floor plans get removed, revised…. Things are always changing so that we can offer the best product at an affordable price to our buyers. It is not done to cause confusion or frustrate you.

    And NOT ALL COMMUNITES OFFER THE SAME OPTIONS EITHER. Selections are community specific, specific to HOUSE TYPE…division, etc.

    1. Sterling- we had two options here.

      $370 for the rough in
      $595 for the pendant lights.

      It was done as a change order with no additional cost to us. They had to do it as a non standard. That made no sense to us because the model home had pendant lighting! Why show it of you can't offer it?

      Good luck with everything!

    2. Holy Cow, so you have to pay $250 for the pendant light rough ins? and another $250 for the granite overhangs? so they are telling you it will be a total of $500 to ask for these changes, in addition to the extra charge for the material for these??????

      Am I hearing you correctly?

      I live in western PA, near Pittsburgh, where are you building?

      Ya you go the BS, blanket statement answer.


      Maybe I was just super lucky and had a great building staff. in the beginning our SR was awesome, as time went on, we started to get those "blanket" statements but not till near the end of the build.

      I also had 2 amazing PM's I worked with, and really did anything we needed within reason.!! they truly wanted you to be happy. I was pulling stuff out of my hat mid build that would get approved at no cost.

      Maybe since RH and Heartland combined its different now.

      We noticed a difference over here too since the merge. So glad we build before the merge. Seems they had more wiggle room back then, we were also PHASE 1, not sure if that mattered, I think they really want a good REP in order to sell the other 4 phases.....I am sure there is some marketing strategy going on also.

      Either way, fight for what you think is worth it and forget about the rest or you will drive yourself nutz.

      Oh about the getting notifications thing. In the corner of your "reply" box on a comment on the bottom right you will see a NOTIFY ME box, check that box and you will get an email when someone comments on that blog.

      Aslo some bloggers have a FOLLOW ME section to place an email. Only a very few have these and if it is there you can submit your email and you will get notified when they post any new posts.

  11. DWT2: I ended up being wrong in the custom pricing. There was confusion on my end. They aren’t charging $250 extra... They are just requiring that for the custom request. The $250 would go towards the custom price.... It's not Extra! So if custom costs $1000.. After you pay $250 for request all that is left that is owed is $750. Make sense?

  12. They make you pay $250 for a custom request!?!? Holy smokes, that's nuts!

    When we built our house we had a huge thick folder of 'non-standard' requests. LOL

    If they charged us $250 for every one we could have bought two houses instead of one! The wall we changed in the laundry room cost us $25. So worth it to have a decent amount of closet space. I don't know how anyone lives in a Ravenna without that extra closet space. My husband uses the whole longest wall for just his shirts!

    1. No, it's $250 per "custom request" but it goes towards the costs so if you agree to it they take that money towards it. Ie. My extra granite hangover on island was $350 but I paid the upfront $250 so we only owe $100. Hope that makes sense. If we decline then we get the $250 back. But that first $250 is out of pocket. I guess it persuades people from making a lot of custom requests. We kept getting the "Ryan Homes is not a custom builder" lingo. I'm sure this is now a tactic to reduce the amount of custom requests coming in.
      Can you show me a picture of the closet you refer to? I was actually wondering if at the pre-construction mtg we can request not to build our bathroom linen closet since we have two in the hallway. It backs into the closet and I would love to have them not drywall that up so we can have a bigger closet and use that portion for shoe storage area.