Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Happy Holidays!

My Pinterest-inspired wreath finally hung
Since I just made and put our wreath out yesterday (better late than never right?) I wanted to wish you all a very happy holiday season.  I hope your holidays are filled with joy and happiness!  


Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Where is Eboni?

My thought every morning!
Well hello friends and happiest holidays to you!!  

I wanted to check in as I have been catching up on your blogs and it's so exciting to see the next set of homes underway!  

So what's been going on with us and what's next?  
  • As far as our home is concerned, there are some very small things to be addressed at our 30-day, but nothing immediate!  Our refrigerator takes about 30 min. to fill a cup with water.  They came to check the line to ensure it was fully open and it was.  This turned into a call to the manufacture by our PM.  He is taking care of this, so I hope to have it addressed soon.  While moving the refrigerator, they scratched a few wood planks, even though they put down a protector board.  Our PM will be replacing those planks. 
  • A few cabinets had small scratches.  Our PM called the cabinet guy to address the issues.  He came, made the issues even worse, so now our PM is replacing the cabinets.  Our PM is the best!  We did not have to say one word...he just said "I will have them replaced".  
  • Ordered blinds, but they are taking forever...so hopefully the neighbors aren't looking too hard!  HAHAHA I have to change clothes in my closet to keep it PG in the community.  
  • We painted the laundry room - boy does paint transform a room!  
  • Washer and dryer decided upon, delivered AND used already HAHAHA - we decided on the Maytag Bravos XL (in Granite color) and I love them...oh...did I mention I scored a floor model dryer with only a small scratch that you can't see unless I point it out to you...for 50% off???  Yes...$1199 sliced in half!  
  • Purchased paint for secondary bedrooms and master closets - All McCormick Paints because we had a coupon from our builder as this is what they used in the homes.  They also offer a great quality product with awesome colors!  
  • Replaced our standard thermostat with a Nest - LOVE!
  • Purchased a dining room table and four chairs from Restoration Hardware - I need to do an entire post on this purchase, but to keep it quick, ask about purchasing floor models.  They will possibly have a wait list of people (yes, I couldn't believe it either).  If there is a scratch like on the leg of the table...do you really care?  If not, grab that thing for a huge discounted price.  Well...that is what we did!  After all, a scratch will only add to the whole 'rustic' look! LOL  It should be delivered tomorrow.  
  • Painting 2nd and 3rd bedrooms, master closets and great/living room shelving areas this Saturday...and no we will NOT be doing this ourselves.  The laundry room was fun but I dare not put my painting skills to a wall where people actually have time to observe the mess-ups.  HAHAHA 
  • Having shelving installed in the great/living room near the fireplace next weekend.
  • Currently entertaining quotes for closet systems in our closets.  So far, I am still leaning towards to the Elfa System, but we shall see.
  • Entertainment systems, such as TVs, speakers and lighting controls are in the making through Magnolia.
  • On the prowl for two more chairs to complete the dining room table.  I wanted airchairs at the heads of the table to mix it up a little.  
  • Planning on finishing the garage before the snow comes! YIKES
  • I will be putting in a peep hole in the front entrance then adding a peep hole viewer.

We have also managed to get that big heavy mattress to the third floor which will be our guest mattress.  It took us about 3 days to do so, but we made it!  I hope to have the guest bedroom completed soon after it's painted.  
We have a list of projects to do but these are the ones that are more immediate.    

Eboni's Advice Corner: 
  • If you want something added to your home and there is still construction going on in your community, ask the guys on-site about completing the work.  Winter is approaching which means they will gladly accept more work.  For us, we thought "why not, they are the same guys who put the home together.  If anyone knows the in's and out's...it's them"!  Our painters actually painted our model homes so that was a score.  It was super easy to tell them exactly what we wanted and you can't beat the price with a stick!  
  • Don't forget to ask about floor models on appliances and select furniture items.  This could save you a ton of money and you could still achieve your vision.
  • Don't feel obligated to take on so many projects at one time!  It's your home, you just moved in and hopefully you are not going anywhere too soon.  Take some time to plan and get things exactly how you want them.  
Sorry I do not have any pictures of anything as it stands, but as projects get finished maybe I will post them here or create another blog.  


Tuesday, December 9, 2014

We're New Homeowners

It's official (actually official on December 5th but I have been sooooo busy with the move)...WE ARE NEW HOMEOWNERS!!!

I will be sure to update once we have had time to unpack.  I tried to update on my phone but it failed to upload.  Better late than never!  Everything was efficient and smooth with closing.  We decided to move ourselves...which is probably why I am still tired and late on posting!  

Big thanks to NVHomes and to everyone involved!  We had one dynamic team including our broker and his office, the loan officer and her office, PM, SR and the settlement office.  

Now the real fun starts!


Thursday, December 4, 2014

Final Inspection + Pre-Settlement + Pictures

Happy Thursday!  

This may be a lengthy post, but I want to cover as much as possible as we are wrapping up our building journey!  So let's get to it!!!

Final Inspection
I spoke about hiring your own inspector for pre-drywall and post (right before your complete your final walk-through).  I will spare you the time of all my personal opinions on this topic...but let me just say it has been well worth the money.  Not that anything major was found on either inspection, but having a professional not emotionally attached to the home to give you the piece of mind is priceless!  

We had the same exact guy from our pre inspection complete our post inspection.  Overall, it was a great inspection but here are the things he found:

  • Electrical panel not installed correctly - the electrical panel located in the 'Man Cave' was installed that in the event the fire department needed to remove the panel, the trim surrounding panel would prevent the panel from being removed.  During our walk-through, our PM noted that he will have the electrician out before we settle to move the panel over a few inches.  This will fix this issue.    
  • The stopper located in one of sinks in the guest bathroom did not stopper correctly - when fully engaged, the water still drained from the sink.  Our PM noted this will be fixed before we settle.  
  • The water was not hooked up in the refrigerator.  Our PM noted the guys will be there today to hook everything up and test it.  
  • The air filter was dirty - our PM noted they change this out the day you settle because there is clean up still going on.
  • One of the outlets in the kitchen was wired with reverse polarity.  This could be a potential safety concern.  Our PM will have the electrician out to fix this ASAP.
So again, nothing too major, but it's nice to have someone know what exactly to look for.  

Pre-Settlement Walk
Our PM had our home smelling soooo good.  He used some type of pad thing placed in the vent...and boy was it welcoming!  He had the fireplace going and I was instantly in love!  This was my first time seeing the fireplace because I did not attend the inspection.  For me, this is where it started to become really real!  In attendance, there was my hubby and I, our PM and a representative from our Real Estate Broker (he was on travel so he sent someone from the firm whom we've worked with before).  Our PM had water waiting for us (very much needed) because this is where we went over the huge binder with all the information about our new home.  We did not go over each and every page because we would probably still be there!  LOL  What he covered was very sufficient for us.  Afterwards, we had some questions then we went on the tour.  Each room at every level was covered.  We had our own blue tape to mark the place up again, but our PM gave us free range to use his green and blue tape as we walked through.  He covered all of the workings in the home from the utility closet to the dishwasher.  

After we walked through, we signed a few documents and my hubby and I were left alone to mark up the place.  We marked as much as we could, and yes we were very picky.  We saw a couple of scratches on the cabinet, so our PM scheduled the cabinet guy to come out this Saturday.  #score 
Like other builders, NV Homes will come out for the 30 day inspection to fix anything we may have missed.  However, we thought since they offered to fix anything before we moved in, why not?  

In the pictures below, you will notice tape that either we or our PM placed throughout the home.  We have a settlement date for tomorrow so we are super pumped.  

OHHHHH two more things...
  • I noticed that our garage door opener was missing, so our PM will check on this and have it completed as well.  This is big because manual lifting a garage door in the winter is not for me.  HAHAHAHA (not to mention it was included).  LOL
  • I do not think I will be painting large rooms upon moving in.  I saw enough settling that caused me to rethink that plan.  I will be paint small rooms like the kitchen pantry and garage but no bedroom or living room spaces.  #ICanWait

I will miss blogging about our building journey, but I will just start a new chapter on making this house a home.  

As always, if you have any specific questions I am here to help.  I tried to make this post informative without creating a book for you to read.  LOL  Enjoy the pics and I will post final pics once we move in.  

It's almost official!

I love our fireplace

Fireplace with lights on

Touch-screen fireplace remote

Kitchen view

One less extinguisher to buy!  Thanks NV

Our PM used a little marketing here! Smell good pad in vent

Pantry - we will most likely replace the shelving unit with the Elfa System

Dining room

Dining room

'Man Cave' wired for 5.1 surround sound - electrical panel discussed above pictured to the left of the windows

I love our cooktop and we will add a backsplash too

Great room with tape (LOL): wired for 5.1 surround sound and I will get shelving put in those spaces

Switch controlled outlets identified - weird angle but they are aligned


Monday, December 1, 2014

Hello December

Helloooo December!  Where has this year gone?  It seems like December was such a far thought not too long ago...and BOOM...it is December 1st!   

This year has been yet another memorable year for us!  I know a lot of you are embracing your new homes, and we will be joining you soon.  We are scheduled to close this week (Yaaaayyyy), so you could imagine how excited we are about our next steps.  

I have not been to the home since returning from my travels (partly because I wanted to leave a little unknown for the surprise factor when we do our final walk-through).  As you know, we hired our own inspector for our pre-drywall inspection and we hired them again for our final walk-through.  The inspection will take place tomorrow (which my hubby will attend), followed by our pre-settlement walk-through on Wednesday.  We will be moving in soon there after.  I have been on pins and needles about announcing an official date because it always seems like something will "come-up".  I hope this is not the case, but I will let you know once we are IN the home!  LOL  

I look forward to making some big purchases (finally) and making our house a home.  I hope you all are settling in well and filling your spaces with lots of love and laughter.  


Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Officially Counting Down...

Let the official countdown begin...

...but first...let me express to you that painting (something I thought I would love) is something I may actually hate dislike.  Between HGTV and you awesome DIY-ers, it seemed like such a fun thing to do.  Let me tell you...those edges...I can't 'cut in' an edge if I really tried.  And I am saying that because I really did try and failed to no end.  I even cheated with some sort of cutting in tool and still managed to mess up the darn ceiling!  LOL  We had to prime all (meaning two) the accent walls in our current apartment.  It was such a  disappointing job, I had to break it up over a 3-day period.  And to think I was about to paint our new place.  No way.  Not at all.  Not this gal.  Nope.  
You see the problem was I watched the (hired) guys do our accent wall without tape and it popped in my mind that I could do it too.  Ha...I was more than just wrong...I was all the way wrong!  Am I the only non-painting painter out there?  Please say no!  LOL  
Super kudos to you out there doing those fab paint jobs.  

Now on to some updates!  We met with our broker over the weekend, as he took on our 'first guest' title!  It was exciting to walk in, take shoes off and walk around like it was our home.  The heat temp was set just right, making it super nice and cozy.  I could have easily snuggled on the floor with my iPad and had a grand time.  Maybe that is why they lock people like me out...because I don't know how to act.  HAHAHA  

Seriously, it was nice to see the place pretty much finished.  Although there was blue tape everywhere (walls, ceilings, stairs and floors) I could appreciate them acknowledging all the marks and dings.  If you all remember, there was that issue of our dining room chandelier being in the wrong spot.  That was fixed...but only 50% complete.  They did move it, but now they need to fix the ceiling that was cut.  There was also the issue of the master shower tile being replaced where they placed the jets.  They took out the jets, which I am assuming was done to begin repairing the tiles.  They still have some detailing to do inside and outside.   

My last meeting with our PM will be this Friday before the holiday vacation.  It will be the last time I see the place before we have our pre-settlement and settlement meetings.  I have really enjoyed this process!  It went by soooo fast!  I remember thinking "Oh I can't wait to be where all the other bloggers are"!  I was there before I could turn around.  You all have made this process even better: bouncing ideas off each other, learning from our mistakes, laughing (and maybe crying) together!  You all are awesome and I thank you for everything!!! 

Here are just a few pics from the weekend!  Have a great rest of the week!

Painting those accent walls 

Staircase with lots of blue tape

Pantry with blue tape

Chandelier moved


Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Updates, Blinds and More...

Well hello there!  It seems like it's been a little while since my last update, so here I am with a brief one for you.  We have been busy with priming our current apartment walls (because it's in the lease to do so if you changed the original color), packing, shopping for window treatment and upcoming holiday travel planning.  We will be closing once we return from our holiday travel, so getting things squared away in the next week is super important.

Every weekend, we still visit to see the progress because we are not locked out yet.  Yipppeee.  Our PM has warned us that the inevitable 'lock-out' period is approaching.  LOL!  Last weekend, we met some new neighbors and saw hardwood and carpet being installed.  Unfortunately, I was unable to get those pics because the men were busy working and I tried to stay out the way.

The cook-top and dishwasher has also installed.  I must admit that our kitchen was the one place I had the most joy 'designing'.  They installed our shower in the master suite as well.  There are still some things that need to be addressed (which I hope to be done this week).  There are some tiles that need to be replaced where the shower was installed and our dining room chandelier is not placed where we requested.  Our PM assured us this will be fixed so I am just waiting it out.  We also opted for them to omit the wire shelving in our master closets and the laundry room.  We will be placing Elfa systems in our closets and cabinets in the laundry room.

Oh...I almost forgot...we have been shopping for window blinds and boy-oh-boy, did I misjudge the price of those things AND how many choices you have!  We decided on cordless faux wood blinds in the color Textured Coconut (doesn't that sound fun), placed throughout the home.  We decided on faux wood because not only does it give us the look we want without the real wood price tag, but they are easy to care for (meaning the sun and water wont attack them like the real wood blinds).  Our installer and company is ready for us to say 'go', but that will not happen until we close.

I would love to know what window treatment are you going with?  

Here are a couple of pictures!
Carpet laid and covered


Master shower (you can see the broken tiles around the jets)

Blind selections


Saturday, November 1, 2014

Happy November || Updates + Pics

October was great, but November will be even better!  For us, November means our home will be ready for delivery.  Thinking back to when our search first started, it's hard to believe it's almost over.  
As promised, I made a visit today and I am posting TODAY!  I could not believe how much has been completed since last week.  Although our PM emailed an update yesterday (his Friday ritual), we still wanted to see it for ourselves.  I know pretty soon, we will be locked out (like others in our row), so we need to take full advantage of the 'free-time'!  There were so many surprises, I'm not sure where to begin!  For the 100th first time, I got a little sentimental about being in the space.  Here's a list of items installed this week:
  • Tile flooring
  • Granite 
  • Some recessed lighting 
  • Kitchen pendant lights
  • Tankless hot water tank 
  • Some electrical/low voltage covers
  • Shower/tub tiles (master and hall baths)
  • Outside lighting
  • Thermostat (we will be changing this out once we move in)
  • Outside sidewalk/driveway 
Out of everything listed, guess what was the most exciting surprise?  Electric!  Yes, we walked in to a place lit with electric.  From the kitchen to our closets...we could see everything without using our iPhone light! 

Our PM informed us that our hardwood and carpet will be in next week.  He also mentioned that all electrical, HVAC and low voltage items will be completed next week.  If the weather holds up (lets all cross our fingers), we will have sod laid as well.  SAY WHAAAAT???  

Here are a few pics that I managed to snap in between my screaming of excitement!  I'm really in love with the place and can't wait to make it ours.  I adore our kitchen (as you can probably tell as most of the pics reflect this space)!  Honestly, the small things excite me just as much as the larger items.  The Rev-A-Shelf additions are awesome because towels, sponges and SOS pads, etc can have a home without being just 'out' in plain sight.

Yes! We have lights (garage entrance)
The kitchen (but not our Monster)! 

Granite selection



Yep...the kitchen again

...and again

Kitchen island

More Rev-A-Shelf

Master bath

Master bath

Laundry room
Loving the tile selection at the main entrance (hubby selection)


Thursday, October 30, 2014

Weekend Update + Pics

My gosh...it's almost the weekend again and I am JUST now posting about last weekend.  Please forgive the tardiness...this has been one busy busy week.  So really quick...over last weekend, we drove out to check on the progress of the home.  We were surprised to not only see trim completed, but they put in our darn cabinets, balusters, microwave and oven!  Whoooo Hooooo...it's getting real y'all!  LOL

I couldn't get great pics because everything was covered (since they appeared to be in a painting phase), but it was still a grand view to see progress.  

Since things are moving right along, we have scheduled our final inspection from the same company who performed our pre-drywall inspection.  You can read about our inspection results here.  

Below are a few pics of progress!  I can't wait to see what's new this weekend.  

Cabinets, microwave and oven in kitchen (microwave and stove covered)

Our choice: dark cabinets

Standard molding in dining room

Trim on windows

We have a garage door!


Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Furnishing Our Home || Washer + Dryer

The time has come to get some shopping done (or at least that is what I'm telling myself)!  In the first post of my "Furnishing Our Home" segment, I figured we could discuss washers and dryers!  I know many of you have blogged about some pretty awesome washer and dryers...and boy there are some fancy ones on the market these days.  Do you remember growing up with a heavy-duty washer with about four main options: 'hot', 'cold', 'whites' and 'colors'?  Talk about technological advances!  

In our current apartment, we have a front loading set.  After using it for the last two years, I am pretty certain front loading is not for us.  We love the look and all the features, but we are constantly cleaning it.  Honestly, we hardly use any of the specialty features, but I guess they can be nice to have.  With our current set, there can be build-up of gunk and a smell of ewww if you fail to leave the door open and clean it periodically.  

With that, we have decided to shop for top-loaders (which is what we know best).  While there are many brands with so many different features available, we have narrowed it down to either a Maytag or Whirlpool.  There are so many options that you don't think about like a locking lid, view windows or not, stem, sanitize settings, and finally, whether or not you want your machine to sing a tune to you when you open the lid!  After reading reviews on both, I am torn!  There are pros and cons of both sets, so I need your help!  I will say that for me, the Maytag is leading the pack based on the reviews, but I would love to hear from you!        

Has anyone purchased a Maytag or Whirlpool?  If so, which model did you purchase?

If you went with a different make like LG or Samsung, which make/model did you go with and why?  Maytag and Whirlpool are our initial thoughts but we are not opposed to switching to another brand if they're awesome!  

Thank you to Sherry & John and LuLu for all the research and great insight!   

Whirlpool Cabrio
Whirlpool Cabrio

Maytag Bravos XL

Maytag Bravos XL


Monday, October 20, 2014

Meet Diesel and the Drywall

This past Sunday, there were two reasons to celebrate: Diesel, our yorkie celebrated his BIG 5th birthday aaannnnddd we have drywall!  Yiiippppeeee!!!
Up until this point, we had not taken Diesel out to the site because there was so much going on and he is one active little guy.  Our PM gave us the OK (we asked in advance just to make sure it was safe to walk through).  Although there was no active construction, our PM said sometimes drywalling can be dangerous.   Better safe than sorry right?  

So, let me just say it was unbelievably large with drywall compared to how it looked without drywall.  Many people told me this would be the case, but my mind couldn't grasp the concept.  I could not understand how the heck the space would appear to be larger with more materials inside???  Huh???  Hey, I am not complaining at all, just amused.  

We let Diesel explore a little, but not too much because he could easily fit through some of the gaps like stair rails.  I didn't take too many pics, but at least you can see the garage and great room!   

I hear everything moves fast after drywall is up.  I can't wait to see it transform even more.  It's about time to think about furnishing the place right?  We have so many items to purchase.  I feel a future post brewing on furnishing our home.  :-)  I know you all will help me make some great decisions!

Hi, I'm Diesel!
Diesel enjoying his birthday popsicle
Diesel looking out of the deck level doors in his "I'm the birthday boy" shirt
Looking into the great room from the kitchen
Looking into the garage