Homeownership Hiccups

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

I can sum everything I've learned about homeownership so far into one word: DOUBLE.

With any project, when estimating time, cost, materials - whatever - always double.

It's funny how things always seem so straightforward and easy when in reality, they never turn out that way.

Our first adventure started with the hardwood flooring. The company we chose was very highly rated and in the end, I have to admit, the work they did was absolutely fantastic.

Going from this..
To this...

Holy cow, we couldn't be happier.

But the process of obtaining these gorgeous floors was not as easy as we thought it would be. There were many things that went wrong. On the first day, the workers came three hours late and the company only sent two guys who couldn't speak English. They got straight to work, which was great, but I had really no way to communicate with them until the rest of the crew showed up. For almost two hours, I had no idea what was going on in the process. It would have been nice to at least have some updates.

When they started tearing up the carpets, I could see what I thought was just old padding remnants stuck to the floor but we later found out were stains (likely from pet urine) that had damaged the wood underneath.
Seriously so gross!

They tried to sand them out but you could clearly see the stains on the wood even when they tested spots of the color we wanted. It's kind of hard to see in these pictures but at least you can get an idea of what we were dealing with. See the blotchy discolorations? Yep, that's it.
At that point, we were told that the boards had to be replaced unless we wanted to live with the marks.

The stains covered about 70% of the floor we were having done so we knew it would be a lot of work. We wanted this to be an investment in the house for us and for the future should we decide to sell down the road, so we had no choice but to go ahead with the repairs.

Of course, this meant (yep, you guessed it) double the labor, double the cost, and double the time. What was supposed to be a two day project turned into four and we had a much bigger hole in our wallets as a result.

Overall, I am really happy with the floors and I think they did an incredible job but we definitely learned a lesson.

Unfortunately, the hiccups didn't stop there.

The carpet company was lined up to install our new carpet in the three bedrooms upstairs after the floors had dried. Because the hardwood took longer than we had originally planned, we had to bump the carpet installation back considerably. Due to our tight schedule, they were set to arrive at noon the day before our move-in.

Around 9:00AM that morning, I was on my way to work when the installers called me to tell me they were there and ready to install. (At least these guys were three hours early!) Confused, I called the sales guy we worked with to explain the issue and he apologized for the mix up but insisted that I try to make it work since their schedule was so backed up. Since I was almost at work, I had no choice but to turn around, call my boss to let him know what had happened, and head over to the house. After I arrived, they began installing and my sister-in-law Kristen was able to swing by soon after so I could go to work. She stayed until my parents could be there while the intallers finished up.

I then got a call around 1:00PM from my dad saying that they had run out of carpet and would have to come back another day to complete the job. I know these are all probably common issues but it was still so frustrating. Fortunately, this time, we only doubled the days of work, not the dinero.

The last issue we had was with our furniture. It was supposed to be delivered the day before we moved in but since two pieces came in damaged, we had to push the entire delivery back a week. This meant there would be no place to sit for a week. Well, except for the shiny new floors, or our bed. Grrr...

I can't say that I expected everything to go smoothly, but I also didn't expect everything to have issues.

Now that we are in our house with beautiful floors and comfy furniture, I feel much better. It's just hard when so many things go wrong all at once! Maybe in the future we should only take on one project at a time. That way, if we encounter bumps in the road, they won't feel so overwhelming!

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