Monday, October 16, 2006

September 30, 2006

We visited the Home Show today in a big hurry. We only had 2 hours so we limited our visit to structural stuff mainly. Of course I bought some fudge too :)

We spoke with the Nudura guy about his product. He knows Michael and recommends him. He said we should use their block for the gable ends as well as the straight walls. He also said we won't get an occupancy permit with exposed foam in the basement so we'll have to check into that.

We met with Acorn Timberframes. I really liked their ideas and photos of stuff they have done and we'll keep them in mind. They live in the Valley so a bit farther than the guy we are meeting today which is a consideration. Their prices were actually lower than we expected which is a nice thing.

We raced home in time to meet with Mark from Gillis and Company Timberframes. He was very helpful and knowledgeable. He seems to think we'll be able to go further with our money than we hoped and would end up with a finished main floor and bedroom floor before the money ran out. He liked the building site and had some ideas already. We decided we would like to work with him and signed the papers. He will be sending us a questionnaire soon so we can start thinking about a lot of different things and so he will be able to refer to it when he starts drawing the conceptual design. He charges $50 per hour for the conceptual drawings and we will go back and forth with him via email to make adjustments. We will discuss formal plans if we come up with a plan we like.

Monday, October 09, 2006

September 25, 2006

Trent the digger guy stopped by on his way home from a job. He dug two holes about 8 feet deep and a small trench where we want the driveway and cut out for the basement. He said there would be little to no problem to dig at the top of the hill. I think we're both happy with the idea of building there and having the end of the hill as our yard and hopefully avoid the problems of building at the end with the hill sloping away on three sides.

We told him we would be in touch in a few weeks to let him know what we want to do.

August 31, 2006

Ooops, I missed this one.

We met with the architect today. He didn't seem very encouraging or interested to be honest. He seemed unwilling to talk about costs and how they would change if we were doing our own work and he kept suggesting we think about doing something really "nice looking" which I guess was his way of saying he preferred a different kind of home than what we wanted. He would charge $5000 to draw up plans if we knew basically what we wanted. We'd take the plans and be on our own from that point on. We hope to GC the house ourself and do a fair bit of building but we would hope for $5000 we'd have some guidance throughout the project. I think we went away quite discouraged.

September 19, 2006

We met with the mortgage rep and discussed what we can afford and what we want to spend. Luckily she says it will be no problem to get what we want. Apparently we can 'afford' significantly more than that but we won't take their word for it.

The draws on the mortgage are getting stricter all the time and some builders get into trouble trying to have enough done with the money they receive to get the next draw. We should be able to get this place roof tight and avoid the first two draws before we have to start the mortgage. If it's possible to build with our own money (or line of credit) for the first 1/3 to 1/2 of the project things will be much easier.

August 2006

Donnie spoke with the septic guy and he said we could pick our location and he would make it work. We'd like to avoid having a super expensive septic system so we're hoping to have the digger guy in first to see what the ground is like. Hopefully Donnie can add more here about the septic information later.

August 2006

Donnie met with the NS Power guy and he measured the driveway up to the hill. He says it costs a flat rate of $35.10 per metre. It is 341 metres along the driveway to the end of the hill. The provide the first 92 metres for free.

August 28, 2006

Mike came up to witch for water. He's supposed to be really good at it. He found a vein easily and showed us where he thought we should dig or drill. We asked him to come over to the spot I found and he found it too! He agreed with Donnie's depth estimate too. It looks like it won't be hard to find water on the hill despite everyone in the community telling us it would be trouble.

August 28, 2006

We had a neighbor up to the property to witch for water and he left us his stick to try ourselves. He isn't able to get around much so we tried some. I found one spot that felt funny and drew the stick down. Donnie 'measured' it and it looks like water is about 25 feet below the surface. Now to find out if we know what we are doing!

August 27, 2006

It looks like we have a final agreement on the house. We received our listing price and will rent back from the purchasers for 18 months while we build. It really couldn't have worked out any better if we had planned it. We're both in shock it happened so quickly and that we are actually going to be building the new place in the next year and a half.

August 21, 2006

The agent called and asked if we would consider a deal where we would rent the house back from the purchasers for a year or two until they moved here. We talked about it and it could be a smart way to build the new house.

July 25, 2006

We finally decided to put the house onthe market. We are asking $162,500 despite the agent thinking it's too much. We really don't need to sell since we don't have any plans to build just yet. We'll make plans soon enough if anyone was to offer us that much. Isaac is excited and hopes it sells right away so we can live in a camper while we build the new house.

April 1, 2006

We went to the home show to get some ideas and just look around. We still have no idea when we are going to build. Donnie was mostly interested in the ICF systems. The Nudura guys know Michael and spoke well of him so it looks like hiring him to do the exterior is probably going to be a smart idea.

March 21, 2006

We met with the Realtor tonight about selling the house. We mostly want to find out what the market is like and how much we can expect. She suggested we list it for around $130,000 but I know Donnie isn't interested in selling for that little. She says it needs to go on the market sooner than later if we want to get the benefit of the spring buyers. We told her we would be in touch with the idea of putting it on the market for a test run around the long weekend in May.

February 3, 2006

We had some trouble with snow in the driveway. The DOT had either not been plowing up to the end of the road or plowing straight in to the driveway making it impossible for us to plow the driveway. The snow gets really deep just before the gate. We're considering moving the driveway to the right to avoid that spot or filling in the hollow between the rows of trees so maybe the snow won't collect there so badly.

December 31, 2005

We set off fire works and drank warm apple cider to celebrate the new year at the new land. We really need to find a name for our property so we know what to call it.

Some suggestions are:

Lushington Hill

The Farm

The Pad

TimberStone Hill

December 25, 2005

In the afternoon after gifts and food, we went to the pond and skated for the first time at the new land. Donnie plowed the snow with his 4 wheeler and Isaac skated. We'll come back soon and do it again.

November 11, 2005

We've been spending all our free time at the property exploring and cleaning up. So far we've tidied up the 1st pond and around the old house. We've covered the old wells for safety and walked the property lines to see just what we own. 100 acres is pretty big!

Today we spent the whole day off at the property getting to know the place better. Isaac invited a friend over and each drove their 4 wheelers around the fields. Then we took the dogs swimming at the first pond. After lunch we went hiking through the woods toward the Lay's Lake Road and back.

October 9, 2005

We got up early and headed out to the property. Our plan was to clean the place up. We loaded garbage on the truck and burned all the old wood and stuff. The fire was huge and it was an excellent day for burning with a little rain. We tore down the smaller shed and totally cleaned up the big shed. Nanny visited and brought us some snacks when we took a break.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

October 5, 2005

The new land closed today! We borrowed Poppa's truck and hauled the camper up there this afternoon. We stopped to open the gate and Isaac jumped out and climbed the fence to remove the "For Sale" sign. We opened up the shed and explored the property a little bit and are looking forward to coming back on the weekend when we have more time.