Custom Home Part 4

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Building A Custom Home On A Golf Course Part 4

by Scott A. Sumner
    In our last article in this 5 part series we saw the home start to take place.  The framing, roof lines with shingles give you a pretty good feel of how your house will work.  It was quite fast to this stage, but there is much to do to finish a home and the detailed work inside is just starting to happen.
    We began our recent progress by choosing the cabinets at Rizzos.  Nick and his son Nick Jr and brother Gabriell their staff have been in the cabinet business for over 30 years.  They have recently have constructed the cabinets at the Whitewater Clubhouse and display townhomes so I had the opportunity to see their work first hand.  Lori, our designer, and myself both like the maple look and decided on a light stain, shaker finish.  It gives an elegant simple modern look and it was an easy decision.  The next choice is what kind of countertop to choose.  I really like the solid, luxurious feel of granite, which is the real trend nowadays.  Granite can be very expensive, in our case some $6000 to cover all the areas including island.  This was over my budget so we have decided on a granite island shelve which is  the most prominent aspect of the layout and will use the traditional arborite on the rest of the counter surfaces.  You can also choose whats called korian for a great look although it is almost as expensive as  granite.  Near the end of our decision our counter top decision process, it was presented that you could place granite tiles adjacent to each other closely abutted on the top of the counters to achieve the granite look at a cost of about 20% of a complete smooth sheet.  I think this look could be very nice but we choose to go with the completely smooth surface of arborite.  The island counter top will be granite 1 1/4inch in depth instead of 3/4 inch as it gives a much better overall look I think.
     Another decision you have to make with cabinets is your appliances as the openings are determined by their size.  This became the most difficult choice so far for me as there are so many brands to choose from including different sizes and whether you go stainless or not.  There is a lot to consider and I went to many appliances places before deciding on the General Electric brand.  They seem to offer a great look and fair price complete with stainless handles.  Our fridge will have two vertical door opening and dispenser for water and ice built in.  It will look good against the maple cabinets.  It can take 4 weeks or more to construct your cabinets so you have to work ahead here.
   In the laundry area there are new technologies that allow you to save energy with front loading machines.  They use less water, don't have an agitator and as one salesperson told me save wear and tear on the clothes.  I choose to go with the new technology even though I think the old models are a good buy.  It will cost some $1300 more to get the new approach to laundry.
   A critical area of any home is your heating and air conditioning.  The team of Dave Robertson and staff at All Temp have a great reputation of providing high quality work and a good product with Bryant.  We had chosen them in our home package with Brunos and after meeting Dave and seeing his showroom we felt positive about this choice.  The warm weather we can get here made an air conditioning unit a good choice and Dave and his team are in the process of doing duct work.  You have to choose where you want your furnace to be located in the basement.  It will effect the flow of your rooms when you develop them.  Continued from previous page.
   The electrical work is fully underway by Alan our electrician.  I have come to call him the pot - lite king as he wants you to have good exterior lighting on your home.  We will have 12 exterior pot lites and some inside to highlite the kitchen and living room areas.  Electrical is an important area as well in a home.  You must choose where you want your outlets, cable tv, phone and it is all wired now.  I want to have brushed stainless steel covers on the outlets and switch locations as I think it gives a rich look and isn't really that expensive.
     At this time I also meet with Dan Gerolami and his company to choose plumbing fixtures and tubs.  His company, Geralomi Mechanical does some 85% of new home construction plumbing in Thunder Bay and we were able to pick a great looking soaking tub at his supplier Wolseley.  I like baths the best and am tall so chose a 6 foot by 42 inch soaking tub for the main bathroom.  Because I am not a fan of one piece shower and tubs I also choose a smaller version of the tub in the other bathroom.  It will also have a shower and require more ceramic tile up the wall.  You should really spend some timer making sure your tubs, taps etc are in the positions in the room you want.  It all adds up to getting what works for you the best. Remember building a custom home is all about decisions, decisions, decisions.  That all add up to the end product.  There is much to look at in terms of toilets and hardware.  You can spend a lot of money here if you want, say getting a one piece toilet versus two piece.  It is about look mostly here.
   The work site is very messy now as the insulation is going up and it is wrapped in plastic.  The drywall sheets have been delivered.  Earlier in the month the basement floor was poured and recently the garage floor.  In addition we had a meeting to finalize out James Hardy board exterior.  Heikki helped us and place his order.  We will have a unique trim highlite around the windows which will really set the house off.  You must also pick the colour of your soffit and fascia material.  This is an important choice in your homes look as well.
    It has been an intense time in the progress of the house.  You might think not much is happening by looking at the out side but a lot has.  I'm hoping we can get the driveway paved and sod the lot before the cold weather.  Let's hope for the best in these areas as it is  all weather dependent.

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