Friday, December 5, 2008

Catching Up...

OK, so I am new to this, have gotten distracted and failed to update my BLOG. After a few technical delays with the closing on our recent project in Reynoldstown (not construction related) we handed off the newly renovated house to its final residents. Then, off we went to Breckenridge, CO for Thanksgiving. A little skiing and turkey you would expect? Not for us! Although we did ski a bit with my son and ate some large roasted fowl with Terry's brother and sister-in-law, it was just days later that we ripped out our one-and-only bathroom in our tiny ski house. No rest for the weary! And, we hate to admit, we did so with very little planning and budgeting. We are the experts, so of course we could renovate a little bathroom and do some upgrades to the house, no problem. Since we never do this to our clients, we are fine with admiting our foibles and their consequenses for two reasons. One, you DIY'ers will enjoy laughing at the mistakes of a pro and for those of you hiring contractors, maybe you can understand why we press so hard to get finish selections, fixture choices and cabinetry plans completed. Lead times drive schedules that drive cost... you get the picture. Here they are-

1. Always have all your plumbing parts available before tearing out your shower. We had the trim for the shower fixture but knew we needed the shower valve. No big deal we thought, it's a Hansgrohe and readily available. Ha! Calling to schedule the pick up with a Denver supplier, I found out it was on back order and 3 weeks out. Yikes! I race to my computer and find one in Minnesota that was shiped overnight. Consequence = 1 day delay $50 shipping. We were lucky.

2. These bankruptcy's are creating delays in getting parts for common items. Needing a converter to switch our gas service from propane to natural gas (which just became available to our neighborhood) we stopped into our fireplace supplier to place the order. "Oh, that part is only about $50 and stocked by the manufacturer but they are in bankruptcy and so are not shipping normally. It could be 3-4 weeks for delivery. " After a lot of begging we are supposed to get it next week before we have to head back to Atanta. We'll see. Consequence = still don't have the part, could have to order more propane at top dollar.

3. Athough it is great to be able to pick up cabinets, fixtures and tile/stone off-the-shelf it is much more cost efficient and quality conscious to research and order. We are happy with the overall design of the bath, but settled for a vanity cabinet we don't love. Also, we probably could have done better on some of the stone accents pieces. We ALWAYS do this stuff ahead of time for our clients and are reminded of why. With the internet and easy shipping, you can get great finishes and fixtures and nice prices by giving yourself some lead time. Consequence = Average vanity cabinet and increased cost of probably $200 or so.

All-in-all we are having a great time. The powder was awsome this morning. We had to take a break and we couldn't shower anyway so why not pile on the clothes and play in the snow. We are back at it now and hoping for a shower (water, not snow) soon. The cold weather is working in our favor :-)

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