Getting started–or how to go from sane to crazy in just one month

So, John and I are building a house…well, we’re not building it, but you know what I mean! And I was thinking the other day, gee, this would make a great story. Lynne & John build a house–while trying not to go crazy and/or kill someone in the process. And then I had to Google that–I mean really, someone must have already written that story, right? 😉 Strangely, no, they have not. In honor of that (no one having my title), I’ve decided to write a blog about our house building process.

Process…sometimes that has a bad taste in the software world. I looked up the definition…I kind of wanted to go with this one:

 “natural or involuntary series of changes”

Sounds like a house building process, huh? But we’ll go with this definition instead:

“a systematic series of mechanized or chemical operations that are performed in order to produce or manufacture something”

Now I’ll have to catch us up to the current day by giving you a brief timeline of our journey to this point.
  1. June 2013–Thinking about remodeling our house–updating the kitchen, bumping out the master bedroom some. After discussion, we realize a) this will make our house the most expensive house in the neighborhood + $40K (since it’s probably already the most expensive house) and b) we don’t want to retire in this house because it’s a 2-story house. At this point, I’m still limping from my knee surgery from last October and using a cane half the time.
  2. July 2013–We start looking around at existing houses with pools…cause you know it’s always cheaper to buy a house with a pool than to put in your own pool. It’s a discouraging–ugly houses, houses in locations we hate, houses that are 2-story…
  3. August 2013–Let’s try new houses–we’ve never bought a new house, might be fun. Where are these people building you ask? Alamo Ranch–traffic galore, houses upon houses upon houses…try to go eat somewhere, wait in traffic. Shudder! Other locations–small lots, builders we don’t like, floor plans that are very rigid and unmodifiable.
  4. September 2013–Maybe we should build on our own lot…where are lots? Huh, there’s one right down the street from here–we spend the month trying to decide if we would want that lot. Eventually determine the street noise would drive us bonkers (after thinking about ways to build the house around the pool, install acoustic barriers, grow bamboo).
  5. October 2013–Okay, while we look for lots, let’s interview builders. We got to so many model homes that they all run together. We take pictures of model homes, and they still all run together. We narrow it down to 3 builders and interview them–yay, we’re progressing.
  6. November 2013--We’ve picked a builder–we like his houses, we like him, we like his sales guy, Larry Armstrong. 🙂 Our builder is Jack Uptmore of Uptmore Custom Homes. We find a lot we like, Jack thinks it’s a great lot, we try to make an offer.
  7. December 2013–I don’t know who owns this lot, I’m thinking they’re elderly and dislike technology. They are certainly sloooow. We meet with a designer to start the house plans. See the progression of pictures.
  8. January 2014–We’ve settled on a price for the lot. We’re getting closer on the house design. Panic sets in–how in the world will we manage all of this. What are we doing? Ack!
  9. February 2014–John has a breakdown. This is apparently the month to go from sane to crazy! 😉 It’s temporary, thank goodness. Our design is done, the lot is under contract, now there are a million things to do before the option period expires. We have to make sure we can actually build on this lot for the amount of money we have! Important consideration.
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