Wednesday, July 17, 2013

4.5 months in....

Hi everyone!  Obviously this blog has not been a priority lately - we have gotten wrapped up with unpacking, settling in and getting a summer routine going.

I have plenty to share now that we have been in the house a few months.

The good:
-I feel like the house is well constructed.  The quality of materials is good, the workmanship is decent (more on that later) and the neighborhood is great
-Our energy bills have never been lower - even when we lived in a house half the size.  $90 last month for  electricity and that was with running the AC 24/7 (it has been hot in VA!)
I am so glad we got the garage door opener with the house
I am so glad we got the deck with the house

The OK:
-We did our 30 day inspection late (our schedules were kind of crazy).  They fixed a few things like an outlet that wasn't working, the crooked chandelier, looked at the dishwasher (it wasn't drying) and re-stained the stairs that didn't match the floors.
-I know they save a lot of things for the 10 month, but they left us with dinged up drywall that is an eyesore, a crooked bannister, crooked trim, the messed up front door, cracks in the drywall around the stairs and a few other things.  I can't believe I have to live with these things until the end of the year.

The bad:
-Our yard grading is terrible in the back.  We have taken video of a literal river running right down the middle of our backyard towards the drain.  All of our other neighbors have the swail at the back of their yard where it is out of the way.  Ours is just awful.  Every time we have a rain storm, my husband texts a pic of the river to our PM.  Nothing has been done.
-When we called the PM to ask him something the other day, we were informed that we have a new PM.  No big deal, but this guy hasn't contacted us either.
-We have YET to receive our survey.  I don't know if this is just an oversight, or if they really don't care what we have to say....
-I feel like we have been put on the back burner.  I wish there was more (any??) communication from the PM when we call.  When we did our walk through, our PM (who we really liked!) assured us that he would be here when or if we needed him. But he has been extremely busy with another development and I have no assurance that MAJOR things will get done like fixing some of the baseboards, crooked trim on the doors, the very obviously crooked bannister, our bedroom door that sticks terribly, the drainage issue, broken hardwood planks (from sloppy installation) and the major cracks and dings in the drywall.

Sunday, June 30, 2013

After a few months...

We've had an interesting few months -- move in was a bear, as always, but we are in and somewhat settled.

We've painted two rooms now, each roughly 400 square feet of wall space. They are the girls' rooms, and the girls got to pick their colors. It took about 3 hours for the first, and about an hour and a half for the second, thanks to lessons learned from the first.

That's about it. Not much excitement, but it's coming along.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Moving in

Sorry to have been away for so long, but I think it happens to the best of us when your life is turned upside down by MOVING!  So, we are settling in.  Still somewhat living out of boxes, but we are unpacking a few more every day.  And finding so many things that we don't need anymore!

Overall, we have been happy with our home.  However, there are a few things that need to be addressed, and I am waiting for them to be done.

First, when it rains, our backyard floods.  Like, whirpool at the drain next to our yard flooding.  Not good.  And this needs to be fixed.  We texted our PM a pic and he said he was aware.  Waiting to hear what he will do about it.  Next is the cabinet that needs to be replaced.  PM found an issue with it at our walkthrough and said it would be replaced in a week and a half.  It has been 2 weeks, and no word when it will be replaced.  And third - now that we have lived in the house almost 2 weeks, we have noticed that the stain on the stairs doesn't match the floor at all.  PM mentioned that he wanted to redo the stairs.  Hoping this happens soon as well.

We will have plenty on the 30 day punch list :)

Monday, March 4, 2013

Welcome to the new fitness program.

We've embarked upon a new exercise program... Move in!

As of yesterday we had the beds in and set up, and the basics in the kitchen. I have to fix a water leak in the old fridge, but it's more an annoyance than a real issue.

The only issue is the sheer amount of stuff to be moved in.

Friday, March 1, 2013

We closed!

We closed yesterday, but it was a total nightmare.  Let's just say when NVR gives you a 100% clear to close, it doesn't always mean that.

We actually had a good working relationship with NVR up until yesterday.  Everything has been pretty smooth sailing for the last 6 months.  We got the clear to close call on Wednesday, the day before closing.  We were all set to close at noon yesterday.  This time worked out for us, because I have to pick my kids up from school at 2:30, which is 30 minutes away from the office on a good traffic day.  Also, the cable guy was coming around 3pm to get us hooked up.

We got a call around 10:30 that said we had to push back closing until 1.  Fine, but it cuts it a little close.  They had ordered a document and wanted to be sure it was there in time.  On our way over the office, at 12:55, we get a call from our loan officer.  We had something on our credit report from 2009, a very small (under $100) medical bill.  All this time, for months, they had thought it wasn't our bill so they never told us about it, and we didn't know about it either.  Six months they had to let us know about this bill.  And they are calling us 5 minutes before closing saying we need to fix it.  Insanity.  They totally dropped the ball on this one.  So, we had to call and confirm the debt, pay it off and let our loan officer know.  By the time this was over with, it was 1:30.  Now we are really cutting it close.  So we go over to the office.  And we wait.  Another 20 minutes.  They didn't have the paperwork in order, and it had to be faxed over.  Then, we had to wait for the closer to show up.  I was steamed.  I furiously signed all my paperwork and had to leave Josh to sign the rest while I raced to get the kids.  I was late picking them up and they were crying :(  Ugh.  Not how I wanted closing to go at all.  It was totally stressful right up till the end.  They also underestimated our closing costs by $1000. And Josh was there from 1:45-almost 4pm.  It should have taken an hour.  And we missed the cable appointment.  Now we have to wait till Tuesday to get cable, and probably wednesday until guardian can come in.  They really, really dropped the ball on this one.

For a company who is so hung up on 10s on the survey, they should have come through for us.  Things in the house should have been perfect when we closed.  Closing should have run more smoothly.  I really feel like they weren't trying hard enough for 10s.  A 10 is perfection, and my house is far from perfect as it sits right now.

There were also some things left undone at the house.  They never tore up the flower bed encroaching into our yard.  And there were a couple other little things that weren't done.  I didn't really want to close until everything was done, but I felt like we had to.

Anyway, despite all of this, we are thrilled to be homeowners and we are thrilled the mortgage and building processes are OVER!

Monday, February 25, 2013

Closing delayed

Closing was supposed to happen today, but sadly some paperwork from another company didn't make it to the NVR office in time, so we have been delayed.  We have been assured we will close by Thursday (the end of the month) and I sure hope so.  We have almost everything packed and scheduled for this week.  There's nothing else holding up closing - just the underwriters, so fingers crossed.  I spoke to our PM about the Certificate of Occupancy and he says it is handled and he's never had a closing held up by that.  So that's one thing I'm not worried about anymore.

We went to see the house on Sunday and found that they had fixed some things, but not the door yet.  Or the backyard.  We have a backdoor neighbor's flower bed encroaching on our yard and it has to be dug up ASAP.

We also noticed some new things that we hadn't noticed before.  Stain on the risers on the steps (it looks like a sloppy job).  Drywall around the corners on the stairs looks terrible.  And the shorter railing on the stairs is crooked (not centered where it meets the wall).

I also think they put in way too much shelving in our bedroom closet, but that's not really their fault.

Hope it all comes together in time....

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Pre-Settlement Meeting today

Today was our pre-settlement meeting.  We have been looking forward to this day for a long time!  Meeting started right around 10am and took about 2 hours.  Our PM was great - he went over everything we needed to know from water shut off to sealing granite and grout to advising us not to use rock salt on the driveway when it's icy.  We got the big binder plus lots of great advice.  Our PM was great today.  He made note of any area that needed attention (most was very minor), walked us through, and assured us we could call for anything after settlement.  I even asked him if he knew someone who could help us get our washer and dryer upstairs and he said he would check for us.  I am leaning towards giving him major kudos on the survey because he genuinely seems interested in us being satisfied with the house and confident that we can rely on him and his team if we have any questions.  I am waiting to see how everything goes this next week and post settlement.  If he comes through for us on the things we talked about, I think he's got it in the bag.  Overall, I am very pleased with the construction and experience.

Some things that needed to be fixed before settlement are:
front door needs to be redone completely
touch ups on paint and trim
touch ups on hardwood
very minor electrical stuff
along with a couple other things that I can't recall at the moment

One thing that made a big difference was that my husband had mentioned needing to tweak something up in the attic - but said he would do it after we closed.  Our PM said he would handle it before closing.  Now, I don't think we got it in writing, but I sure hope he does it, because I know it would mean a lot to my husband not to have to do it, even though it was fairly minor.

Not much had changed with the house since last time except it had been majorly cleaned AND we had sod!