Holy wow, this process is crazy! But I will say God works in mysterious ways and the plan you think you have will likely be tossed out the window.
This process isn't any cheaper than it was in the beginning but if we're ever going to do anything with that piece of land we have on Buckhorn Church Road, then we better start making some decisions.
We are so glad that the Lord made us wait before jumping into a decision. We've been known to be so excited about something that we just jump all in. About a month ago we were ready to sign a contract and get the ball rolling. We got a baby-sitter for the night (thanks, Grammy and PaPa) and drove the 20 minutes to this contractor's office with huge grins plastered on our faces. We just knew it was time-- we were going to sign that contract. We pull up into the driveway, wait for 10 minutes since he wasn't there yet, then just as we are about to ring his cell, he comes up and almost drives past us, like maybe he had somewhere else to go? He couldn't possibly have forgotten about our meeting. We had just set it up that morning. Could he?
Long story short, it was a wasted trip. The contract was not prepared, numbers had risen with no real reason why, numbers had to be tightened back up (again), and topics discussed at the last meeting had to be revisited. Perhaps they were forgotten? Not on our end, I take notes at every single meeting we have with every contractor. Call them "minutes" if you will. I'm glad I did.
When we got back in the car, I wanted to cry. I looked at Brad and said "tell me exactly what's on your mind." He said "I'm glad there wasn't a contract to sign." Good grief!
So we took time off and went on vacation for a few days. "The Contract" was faxed to Brad the following week. It looked fine but we just couldn't shake the feeling we got at the last meeting with this contractor.
Let me go ahead and say this for you future home builders: meeting with a contractor(s) is kind of like dating or courting. You get all involved, start falling in love, then something happens and you realize this relationship isn't going to work out. So it's time to break up. But you really don't want to because someone's feelings are gonna get hurt. I mean, he invited us to his home for a tour and a beer. This is a legit relationship. What do you do now? You google how to reject a contractor. And it's not pretty.
Some say we should explain why we aren't hiring him and others say keep it short, sweet, and to the point; do not burn any bridges. You may change your mind or need him later. Either way, it's proper to let the contractor know. Don't leave him in limbo; he will call and you'll fumble around with your words. Keep reading.
So we get back on the phone with our other boyfriend, I mean contractor, and set up another date to review his proposed contract again. Look at us! Dating two at one time! How cheeky. How necessary. This is our forever home. We don't want to make a mistake or wonder "what if..." So yes, we've gotten 3 different proposals from 3 different contractors.
We spent this entire weekend back and forth with this contractor fixing our proposal to get it within a price range we can afford. And lo' and behold, guess what we're doing tonight? Signing a contract! Say a little prayer for us that we are making the right decision. Please.
Oh and that other contractor? He called on Saturday as I was emailing "the one" back. How ironic. I didn't even know what to say. So, to buy some time, I told him we were still thinking it over. His response: "Okay, well it had been a week since I sent the proposed contract. Hadn't heard from you. Also, I printed 6 of those floor plans you picked. Paid $48 to have them copied for you. I'm sure you'll need them to take to the bank and such..." Is he trying to tell me that I owe him $48? We never told him to print the plans. Yes, it's from a home he has built before so he could easily make new copies for us. Copyright law broken? Not sure but probably. Guess who will be receiving their "Dear John" letter this week? Yeah... Break ups are never fun. Let's just pray he doesn't call for a reason WHY we didn't pick him. I really don't want to tell him...
That it's because your older-than-old-school communication through phone calls and faxes are ridiculous, driving out to your office 5 times (the last of which was a total waste) when the other contractor is willing to come to us or meet anywhere since he knows we have a small child, numbers increasing out of nowhere, and not remembering what you were suppose to be researching between meeting dates.
So tonight's the night! We're getting engaged! No really, we sign our proposal then get started designing our very own floor plan. Sure, the main idea is from one we found online but to avoid buying them then having to make all the changes we want or violating copyright laws, we get to use a drafter to design our plans! Let's pray all this dating we've been doing will turn into a beautiful marriage of home building, communication, and selecting paint colors and tile!