Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Pre-Construction Meeting

We've got backhoe  Excavator!

(lucky for me, I have friends in the construction industry, who were horrified that I mis-identified this excavator.  Apparently, on a back hoe, the hoe is on the back.  Who knew?)

We had our pre-construction meeting today and met our PM.  He seems like a pretty competent kind of guy, but young!  Seems as if he has worked for Ryan for several years and knows his way in and out of the county code book though.  He let us know that the backhoe would start digging tomorrow (!).  And that it would finish digging tomorrow too.  Apparently, it only takes about 4 hours to dig out the foundation.   We are looking at a closing sometime in September, and he expects that our pre-drywall meeting will be in 5 weeks.

Other than that, the pre-construction meeting was pretty bland and boring.  We went over our choices, and through this giant list of specs.  The sales rep yawned.  Several times.  She must have been bored out of her gourd - she must sit through hundreds of these.  We found out where the alternative location for the microwave is (next to the fridge) and learned about some minor changes in the house design that have happened, mostly due to code changes or Energy Star certification changes.  I would have never noticed any of them, except maybe one.

The air returns will now be over each door upstairs, instead of in the ceiling.  Apparently, the cold air return is now centralized in the hallway, and because of this they have to change the locations of the returns in each bedroom.  BF and I are having a debate about this - I thought this meant there would be a vent that you could see through (and hear through!) above the door.  BF thinks it will be open only on one side and connected to duct work.  Anyone have any intel on this?  I'd really rather not have open space above the door that you could hear/see through.  What if I want to go upstairs, shut the door and scream obscenities?  If there is a hole in the door, that's not going to be such a private moment...

But regardless, I'm starting to get excited!


  1. The digging part doesn't take very long since they use the bulldozer tractor to dig and get the dirt out. The pre dry wall meeting sounds about right 5 weeks. It will go fast. Sept is right around the corner. Our sales rep was only there for thepre construction meeting for first 20 mins before a client showed up to take a look around the model.

    What other code changes were there that was added the only one I was aware of as the microwave location. Are there new ones?

  2. Here in NY the microwave isn't an issue being over the stove (which is a huge surprise since we have more gov't regulation than any other state other than CA maybe) but I'm interested in knowing the other code things that have changed. I am sure I wouldn't notice either. Not sure about the air returns..sorry!

  3. So I think you are both correct, unless based on your last statement you think there will be a hole in the actual door...then BF is absolutely correct. Based on the information you have supplied I would say that the cold air return duct is running down the upstairs hallway(above the ceiling) and the vents will be attached to the 2 doors were directly across the hall from each other you could stand on a chair in one room, look thru the vent, thru the duct, and thru the other vent into the room across the hall, but you wouldn't be able to see much since the vent openings are usually slanted...not just a grid. As far as sound is concerned it really makes no difference if the vent is in the ceiling or in the wall above the door...all cold air returns feed into a central return duct so from a sound perspective it would be the same no matter what. The vent can't just be a hole in the door to the hallway, it has to be attached to duct work in the ceiling to form a closed loop system.