Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Surprise Walkthrough

I got a call from our project manager early this afternoon. Along with the usual progress updates (ductwork and HVAC installed over the weekend; plumbing and wiring being installed this week) he also asked if I was available to meet with him and do a walkthrough of the house later in the day. (NOT the pre-drywall meeting. That's going to happen next week.) Since I work at a school and my day generally ends by 3pm anyway I jumped at the chance meet him. As luck would have it Jenny was also able to leave work a bit early and also attend.

Jenny and I had walked through the house over the weekend and noted a number of minor issues that we went through with him. Among other things (and his responses):
-Gouges in the garage floor. (Normal and unavoidable. Will be patched prior to closing.)
-Several cracked 2x4's in the framing. (Imperfections are common and these were on non-load bearing walls so it's not an issue.)
-Several holes in the plywood on the walls. (Apparently the construction crew will do this intentionally to give them hand holds to lift walls into place and they will be patched later.)
-Numerous spots where you could look up at the second floor and see where nails were secured into the floor joists. (Also normal and results from going so quickly with a nail gun. The subfloor is secured with not only nails but screws and glue as well to prevent squeaks.)

We also found out what the deal was with the bedroom closet/laundry room nook issue I noted in my previous entry, Slight Deviation in Plans. According to him this was a result of a common tweaking of the house plans based on customer input and other factors and it just hadn't been reflected in the sales materials yet. Like I mentioned in that entry Jenny actually preferred it that way and is glad to have the spot in the laundry room for extra shelving/storage space. (Although he said if we really wanted it the other way it wouldn't have been a problem to re-frame the space.)

We went room by room and had a chance to ask questions. All the ductwork and plumbing had been run, and a crew was working inside on the wiring as we went through it. Being as curious as I am about such things I probably bordered on the annoying with everything I asked about. Seeing as all of this stuff is covered up behind the walls it was absolutely fascinating to me seeing how these systems come together and work.

A few other things of note I learned today that I found especially interesting:
-Electrical wiring around the exterior walls of the house is run at the bottom instead of in the middle as you see on interior walls. Apparently this is an energy efficiency thing. Lower on the wall creates a smaller gap when insulation is placed over it.

-Each spot where the wire is passed through a stud is covered by a little metal plate. This prevents a nail from accidentally hitting the wire if someone goes to put up a picture or otherwise do something that involves putting a hole in the wall through the stud.
Small metal plate protecting the electrical wire.

-One of the things Jenny and I had noticed over the weekend and were curious about was why there a piece of house wrap on the interior wall of the master bathroom. It's the only spot inside the house like that and we figured it was there for a reason but just weren't sure what that was. Turns out we were right and it's actually yet another energy efficiency thing. That piece of house wrap sits between the tub and the exterior wall and helps to keep the water in the tub warmer.

House wrap on the wall of the master bathroom.

I also received a slight slap on the wrist so to speak from the project manager regarding my visits to the site. He had told us any time we wanted to go on the property we needed to check in with the neighborhood office and be escorted. The first time I had done this I was told by the sales representative there that this was more of a formality and I could go down there whenever. I've also read on numerous blogs and talked to other folks that have been through the build process that they had no problem visiting anytime so I didn't think much about it. I've been waiting until evenings once the crews leave to go look around and snap photos and check on things but I was reminded this afternoon that I do need an escort for my own safety.

As it is we're scheduled to do our pre-drywall meeting next Monday and should find out for sure at that point our expected closing date. Hopefully we've finally seen the last of the snow and things should move right on along from here.

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