A Real Life Reno

If you haven’t heard, Brian and I are attempting to renovate a future dream home that needs a major transformation. It’s fitting to use “attempting” because at this stage, we feel like so much is out of our control. We’re very on-top-of-it kind of people, and even so,  it’s felt like we aren’t getting anywhere at times. We’re constantly waiting on others to get our project moving or have to bug people five or more times before they’ll respond, and that lack of communication drives us (mostly me) nuts.

If you’re new to our story, here’s the condensed version:

We purchased a home in Scottsdale because of its lot size and location. The curb appeal of the house did not speak to us but the potential we saw couldn’t be ignored. We quickly tried to get somewhat of an estimate for a renovation bid before putting in an offer, but most companies told us there was no way to give us a bid until we had the architectural plans. But c’mon, on TV they have contractors able to give quotes right on the spot! We had to use our best judgment with only one quote and moved forward with the purchase and closed on May 18, 2018.

We then signed a contract with a draftsman on May 21 to get right to work on our design and plans. We already had a great start, we thought, because we basically new what we wanted to do to the house. It should only take two-three weeks before we would submit plans to the city, right? Wrong. We didn’t submit our plans to the city until July 23.

The City of Scottsdale then reviewed our submittal in good time as we had notes back on August 10 – three days sooner than what was estimated! But unfortunately what they came back with required an additional surveyor to come to the house and another engineer to review those plans. That should only take two weeks, right? Wrong. We still haven’t gotten that far, or at least we don’t know if we have. Every day this past week they told us it would be ready… any day now.

I also fast forwarded through months worth of tackling the bidding process, price negotiation, messy disagreements with contractors, design decisions, and oh, the kicker of it all: PAYING FOR A HOUSE WE AREN’T LIVING IN. Then there was also that time a new neighbor of ours called a complaint on us because we let the front yard grass grow too much, the pool was green, and a gate broke. All costing us money, and none of it getting us closer to our dream house.

Anyway, these are all first world problems of course and we are so fortunate to be in the position to build a home that will hold years’ worth of memories. We just wanted to share our story because we know there are thousands of people likely going through a similar journey, yet all we see is the HGTV version of renovations done in six weeks and under one hundred thousand dollars. That isn’t real life. Our journey, however, is real and we hope you’ll enjoy following along the realistic version of a major renovation.

Until then, just love life.

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