Updates

The  drywall, closing, taping, texture guys from Skyline started first thing this morning.  They’re not as accommodating at Nathan and Brian, in that they wouldn’t let me in to see the house.  Liability issues, they said.  But it’s going well.  They said they’d be done by Wednesday.

Carpet:  Received a call from the flooring store today, the carpet arrived, and they have an opening Thursday morning between 9-10 to install the carpet.  Check

Flooring:   This is getting confusing.  Lumber Liquidators told me I had to accept the materials by Jan 31, 2013, or I would not get the reduced price.  When I called today, I was told that they couldn’t deliver until next week.  Huh?    After much discussion, it seems like they can get the floor delivered by tomorrow, and the Skyline crew said that they could store it in the Office/Den, as they will not be fixing stuff up in that room.  Check.

Next I need to call the installers to arrange for the installation.

Counter Tops:  Can’t do anything about that until I know when the floor is going to be installed and completed.

Exterior Space/Sidewalk Issue:    Managed to have a conversation with Dick about the sidewalks.  When I asked why did the sidewalks for the skirting have to be poured with the driveway on Wednesday, as I was planning to put decks and stairs in and any concrete around the house would just get in the way, Dick thought about it, and said we could hold off on the sidewalks.  So I emailed the builder and told them that they need to coordinate the skirting with the park, as I would be adding decking.  No word back from builder, yet.

Deck:  I asked Dick to advise me what the maximum decking I could have.  As long as I keep ANY decking three feet from the sidewalk and the neighbor’s property, AND as long as it is not enclosed (which would make it living space), I could, for all intents and purposes, deck the entire lot.  I won’t do that, but the size of my decking will be limited by the size of my bank account.

I really don’t want anything fancy, but I do want a big enough outdoor space to sit out with friends.    Also, I’m thinking of a small patio outside the prow end, fenced in (gently) … and have that as my fragrance garden (star jasmine, daphne, gardenias, lavender, etc.).  Put both my 4 x 4 raised bed forms in the back of the house, and then lots of container plantings on the deck.  I’d like to experiment with  espaliering container-planted (or ground planted, not sure which yet) dwarf fruit trees around the fencing.

Awning over driveway:  Nathan told me that a 30′ awning had been ordered, but that makes it about 1 foot too  short for the space.  Again, I emailed builder, asking for an additional foot.  The driveway is going to be 50′ (length of house) and mostly 12′ wide.  Just up at the front entrance (of the driveway, on the cul-de-sac entrance) it’s going to be narrower than 12′, which is why the awning can’t go the entire length.  A minor little hitch that makes me think it’s going to be a major headache.  As it stands, with the 30′ length, it doesn’t cover the the back stairs completely.  So if it’s raining, and I need to bring groceries into the house, I’m gonna get rained on.  No word back from builder about size of awning.

The Tree:  And the saga continues:  Now that the pad is pretty much cleared of extraneous coverings (rocks and dirt), this one root basically goes from the tree to the bottom of the front stairs.  Also, there are several shallow roots that virtually abut the house, and I when I asked how the sidewalk would fair on top of that, I was told they were going to cut back all the exposed roots.   I said, “wait a sec, those are basal roots, and they affect the health and longevity of the tree”, Dick said “If it gets sick, or turns brown, we’ll take it down”.   Go figure. He knows that both trees are at the end of their lives but the owners are insistent.  I suggested that I would be willing to pay for a baby Monterrey pine if the one comes down, and as they take 5 years to mature and get tall, we should be about ready to replace the other one.  We’ll see.

Escrow:  You pay for the house, in full, when it leaves the factory.  As I was going to have to liquidate one of my IRAs to pay for part of this, I asked the builder if I could pay half when the home left the factory, and the other half after January 1, so I wouldn’t take the income hit in 2012, when I had been working the first half of the year.  They said no problem.  So half the cost of the house was wired on the last day of business before the Christmas holiday, Friday, Dec. 20, and the house was supposed to leave 12/21 for my lot, if you remember.  Only, due to weather, it was left in the factory for an additional two weeks.  Further, I had asked for an updated, balance-due invoice, as I was being credited something for the fridge I didn’t take.  As I was paying bills over the weekend, I realized I hadn’t gotten the updated invoice, and asked them for a copy so the funds could be wired.  I got the invoice, but then this rather odd statement from David “Let us know when the money is being wired so we can have the title company expedite escrow”.  Expedite it?  It should be all ready the minute you get the money, no?  I’ve asked for an explanation, because I need the key to let workman in to do carpet, floors and countertops, as well, as take delivery of sofa, fridge, cleaned area rug, and dining room set.  No answer from builder, yet.

That is all for now.  More later.

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