We're building a house. Can't be that hard, right?

We're embarking on a home building expedition, and here's what we have to say about it!

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Tuesday, May 18, 2010

And now, for the interior!

Since you've now seen the lovely artist's rendering of the front of our new house, I'll show you some of the inside.

It's pretty boring, but at least you'll get an idea of what it might someday look like.  This is the first floor:
We have made a few changes already with the builder. First, we are moving the bathroom down about 4 feet and adding a small mudroom. It takes about 18 inches off the kitchen, but will be a great place for muddy boots, coats, running shoes and anything we'd rather not track through the house.

We'll get a cute bench and some wall hooks for that little area.

Second, we added a knee wall in between the kitchen and living room. It's probably about 7-8 feet long and offers a good separation between the kitchen and family room while keeping the feel of an open floor plan.

Third, we have asked for one of two things. We asked that either...the fireplace be moved to the right side wall in between the two windows, or for the fireplace to be exchanged for a wood burning stove that would sit in the corner by the wall that backs into the study. We are waiting to hear back from the builder on that. I guess fire place codes are changing in June so he's not quite sure which option we will be able to go with. We'll find out soon. I really am hoping for the corner stove, but we'll see!

And, forth, we have asked for the doorway to the study to be expanded for a double door. Cute! We hope to get doors with glass cut outs. Should be fun! Oh, and that cute pop out window in the front of the study is going to be a window seat. At 'butt height'. Seriously. Steve the Builder actually had to ask. He had an older couple opt for the window seat and they requested 'dog height' so their little mop of a dog could sit on the seat and see out the window. It was about 4 feet high! Way too high for a seat. He made sure we wanted butt height, not dog height.

After making all these changes, I wanted to see on paper what it really looked like. In all our excitement, we forgot to ask Steve the Builder to print us a copy. So, I googled 'room planner' and found a bunch of websited where you can plan your room. Furniture and everything, down the to inch. This on seemed to be the best: http://www.bassettfurniture.com/.
How does that look? Not bad, I think... it took me about 45 minutes today at work. Don't tell my manager... :)

Next is the upstairs:

For this, we really didn't change much. But, the small changes are a little complicated...

If you look closely, you'll see that there's a big chunk of room on the far left of the drawing that's marked as "unfinished attic"  It's really not attic space because it's not above the second floor and there already is an attic above. It's the space over the garage, which is not heated and has no plumbing/electirc or anything. You can already see the master bedroom and the other 3 bedrooms. But...what some people have been asking, is for the space above the garage to be used. It can be pretty expensive to do during the construction because it's not built in to the price of the house. Steve and his builders will now dormer it during construction (which doesn't cost anything at all, you are just raising up the roof a little) so that in the future, it can be expanded into a master suite.

We have opted for that! In order to do that, you need to push the closet and master bath over about 2 feet (I don't know why, but that's what they said!) which makes your laundry room about 2 feet wider. We decided that because the laundry room is wider, we are putting a closet against the back wall that will run lengthwise and we are moving the window that's there to the back of what will be the master suite. It will sit along side another window we have asked to add. The additional windows only cost us about $150, and since we've only asked for 2 extra so far, Steve is not charging us.

We have also asked for what's called a 'dog-eared' dormer in the front. It's basically a pop out double window that will probably someday be a  reading corner or something. Here's a picture of another house with that option already built in:

 Forget the rest of the picture, this is a totally different house. But see the 2 windows on the top of the garage (it's a side facing garage so that's why it's only 2 window and not the garage doors).

That's what it will look like above our garage.

For the first few years we live there, it will be decoration from the outside only. Then, someday we'll expand into that space and create a 5th bedroom.

Five bedrooms sounds like a lot, but if you look closely at the drawing of the second floor, that '4th' bedroom is REALLY small. In talking, they've been calling it an office or nursery. It's cute, but tiny. My guess is about 7x9 or so. After expanding, we'd have a true 4-bedroom house with an office.

I have not taken a stab at designing the upstairs using Bassett's website yet, but I just might if I get bored later this week!

Thanks to the generosity and foresight of Steve and his contractors, all we'll really have to do someday to have an awesome master suite, is get an electrician in there, wall it up and finish the flooring. Sounds easy. And we love having something to look forward to and work towards. Maybe someday I'll write about my big ideas for that room :) 

One of the things we liked so much about this house model (it's called the Marie), is that while it's already a great house, there is room for a few small expansions down the road.

We can also add a front porch to the house, but that's another big cost up front, so we'll wait on that. There's no prep work for that, so we'll just keep that in our back pockets for some other day (or year!)

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