Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Questions and Answers for and by our PM


Questions and Answers during our preconstruction meeting

As mentioned in my previous post a few minutes ago, our PM is very "by-the-book" type of person.  After talking to him the first 10 minutes I knew most of our requests will be a "NO" answers.  Here are the list of questions  we asked our PM.

1) How many meetings will we have during the whole building process?
3 times: Preconstruction, Pre-drywall, Final walk-through.  The first 30 days (after closing) will depend on how many issues we have.  After the 30 days, we will contact another person to fix things or contact RH customer service.

2) Can the basement window be moved to another location so it's not blocked by the deck?
yes and he actually recommended to move it to the side of the house.

3) Can we put extra insulation in the laundry room and garage?
yes as long as it's done after the county inspection and not getting in the way of workers.  It'll has to be a day when they are not working on the house or at night.

4) Can we add an extra switch for the backyard floodlight?  1 in the morning room and one in the basement?  
He'll need to ask the electrician and pay for extra labor and material.  Don't know the cost yet.

5) Move wetbar rough-in?  Yes but we kept it at the same location as the model home.

6) Can we select our garage door? PM and SR didn't know there were 2 types of garage doors.  1 has the squared windows and the other has curve/elliptical windows.  We wanted the elliptical one.

7)  Put in 2x4 where we will hang our TVs?  Yes but we'll need to bribe the workers with coffee and doughnuts :)

8) Do showers have soap dish?  According the the SR, yes, If not then they will not provide them, we'll have to install it after.

9) Move the washer/dryer hookups lower so we can install a counter-top?  No because it prevents future access for maintenance.  We'll need to mount the counter-top higher or cut around the lines like pictured below.

 10) Can we expand our basement bathroom to use up the empty space behind the wall?
No, it has to go by the blueprint.  I really wanted this and it's not much work needed.

11)HVAC specs:  Our concern was that our house is 3 levels, over over 4000 sq ft, 2 story foyer and family room but we are only getting 1 zone unit.  Our PM said it should be enough and we just need to close the vents to regulate the cooling and heating.  It doesn't sound very comforting. 
AC unit = 13 SEERS (I was hoping 14 or higher), 13 is bare minimum.
Heater = forgot to ask about this one
Water heater= Was told 55Gal high efficiency.  Didn't ask for make and model
Insulation: Walls = R15, Attic R45. Sunroom is R38 since the ceiling is sloped.

12) How are drywall installed?
They use glue, nails to hold, screws to tighten.  This is what I was hoping they use and it's good.  If it's only nail than you'll see pop nail everywhere after year 1.

13)Type of door is the front door?
Insulated Fiberglass.  This is good, it's efficient and long lasting vs wooden door.

14)If I bring my own medallions for the chandelier and foyer lights, can you install them?
He'll need to ask his installer for labor and paint cost.

15) Can I use my own building inspector?
yes but let him know when

16) Can we paint the walls before the 10month inspection?
yes but not recommended.  If you paint the walls and repairs are needed, they will only prime the area but you'll need to do the final paint to match the color.  I'm ok with that.

17) We didn't pay for the fireplace blower ($350) but will there be an electrical plug inside if I install the blower myself in the future? Yes

18) Can you keep the extra building materials in the garage instead of dumping it?
No, they have to clear the house of any material for inspection but I'm free to jump into the dumpster and salvage anything I want.

19) Some other stuff I didn't even bother to ask because I knew the answer will be no but I'll list them here anyway in case your PM is more accommodating.

-Extend my front porch a little wider.
-Walk way from the garage to the front door (we have a side-loading garage)
-Extend the driveway 1' to the left and 1' to the right to make it wider.



  1. We took a drive through our neighborhood and only saw the latter example for the garage door. We still plan on asking if the door with elliptical windows will be an option.

  2. Great post!!

    I have found that some contractors are willing to do side jobs for you but you must catch them to ask for what you want. Your PM responses sounds very much like our PMs responses. However, I would get everything you can while building and put your swim suit on and go dumpster diving!! lol There are lots of goodies in them. The contractors must clean up their mess or they will be fined. I literally watched the guys throw precious pieces of our hard earned hardwood flooring in the trash and I happily went and took it back. LOL

    Happy Building Cloud Clou! Strap your seatbelt on and Enjoy the ride!

  3. Cloud... we were able to get our driveway widened we just had to cut a check to the asphalt company. Also, the shower shelves are provided from wherever you got the tile from. Here in PA it is Rusmur flooring. We got 2 shelves to match the tile. They came out really nice!