Custom Home Part 5

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Building A Custom Golf Home Part 5

by Scott A.Sumner
    We are at the drywall stage in our home and this can be a very messy part of the work.  The good thing is you know you are getting closer to completion.  Some say a rule of thumb is after the drywall is up you are about 4 weeks away from occupancy.
    Kai Hilden is the owner of M & L Drywall and is very busy in new home construction.  An important point I learned at this stage from Kai was the importance of using what is called resilient channel.  "We screw it on to the trusses and then screw the drywall on to the resilient channel.  The reason is because the temperature change in NW Ontario is very extreme and the expansion and contraction of the wood in the trusses," states Kai Hilden.  "The trusses can lift up and if you don't have resilient channel the dry wall lifts and you can have a hair line crack.  It works like a spring and it gives, so basically most people do this now.  We have been doing it for 3 or 4 years, because in the past 1 of 10 jobs would have a lift."
      Before the drywall is placed in position the home has to be insulated.  "We insulate it and call an inspection.   Then we place the vapor barriers and call an inspection.  Then it is ready to go," notes HIlden.  "We place mud on two times after taping and sand it each time after it is dry.  Taping is an art.  I've been in the dry wall business for 30 years and I still dont know how to tape.
    M & L has one of the best tapers in Thunder Bay in Erik who has been in the field for over 30 years starting with his father as soon as he could walk.
    Does Kai Hilden like his job?  "Time goes very good.  It is physical work so you stay in shape.  We call it drywall aerobics.  It isnt tough if you stay in shape," laughs Hilden.  "I like to see the finished work and you get paid well.  People don't want to work physical work anymore it seems.  Drywall is a great area to be involved in.  You can do rounded corner beads.   The ceiling are 90 to 100 % smooth ceiling rather than textured.  Designers are also involved in picking colors and they look good"
If you want to get drywall work done say in your basement March April and May are good times as the workers are less busy then.  In last few years though the construction has been so busy any one who wants to work can work year round.
     Another important step happened at this time and that is picking flooring colours.  We started with the granite top on our kitchen island and the bathroom vanity granite colours.  Then designer Lori and myself chose the hardwood flooring colour and finally the ceramic tile for the bathroom, kitchen and laundry room floors and up the wall on the tubs in the bathroom.  You really have to bring your samples with you and by trial and error choose what look good especially in combination with each other.  The rugs in the bedrooms are also to be picked.
     The next decision to make was interior doors, hardware and trim.  My contact person here was Mike of Windsor Plywood.  Mike showed me the selection of interior doors.  It is basically a paint grade door but gives a much more solid feel.  I had used hollow doors before in my condo and for about $80 extra per door you get a better feel.  Of course you could have a solid maple door for instant which would cost perhap $400 extra per door, but our interior image as developed with designer Lori is to have a painted door and trim.  Our wood focus will be on the flooring.
    The trim is another selection to make.  You place the trim board on the floor and around the doors.  Here you can choose various styles and widths and because our home has 9 foot ceilings I decided a wider trim would look best.  The kitchen area will also have a pantry adjacent to the cabinets.  The maple shaker look will lend itself to having a maple door with metal dividers and frosted glass.  The door will be stained the same colour as the cabinets themselves by Rizzos Cabinets so will give a rich look.  Here we decided to go with a solid maple door to achieve the image so count on a up charge of about $400 over the basic door allowance.
       The flooring aspect of our home is an important decision as it will really affect your overall look.  Most of our flooring will be hardwood with some ceramic and little carpet.  Many people seem to have no carpet but I think it provides the best feel in your bedrooms.
   Gilbert, Jason and Michael Copetti of Intercity Ceramic Tile were very helpful in choosing the ceramic for the bathrooms, laundry room and entrance area from the garage.  The trick is to have samples of your other selections like cabinet colours, hardwood, granite colours and perhaps even paint.  You really have to make things flow and designer Lori helped along with the Intercity staff to choose a good look.  We also had to find a matching tile to place up the wall around the tub enclosure.  You can pay all amounts for ceramic tile, say $1.79 per foot to $10.00 plus and that doesnt include grout etc and labour.  Gilbert Copetti informs that many new home builders can find it difficult to spend a lot on flooring as this stage as it is one of the last things you do on your home and generally you have upgraded galore to this point.  Flooring is something that shouldn't be skimped on and will really add to you enjoyment and value.  Your best bet could be to choose an instock tile as you will gain a better price and still have great selection.  Also your tiles will be available when you need them.
   Overall my home is coming along nicely.  Our driveway is paved and was one of the last jobs of the year for Brunos Contracting on a warm sunny Rememberance Day.  I think it will make me feel like I am living in a finished house this winter, instead of a construction zone.  Whats left is the paint colours on the walls, choosing some cabinet top colours, light fixtures, the alarm and many other little details Im sure.  Something tells me we are getting closer to finishing this process.  It should be another month and Im extending my series one more month to part 6.  Well show you the final product!

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