Wednesday, October 17, 2012


Anyone familiar with that commercial for insurance that features Green Bay Packer QB Aaron Rodgers where they talk about doing the discount double check? Okay...just YouTube it if you aren't.  Anyway...this post is just a little rant about options and a little piece of advice for anyone just starting the process.  We are in the holding pattern on our pre-construction meeting while our plans get written up and approved by the county.  So in the meantime, I thought it best to go back over all of the options just to make sure that we had everything.  Well in a visit to the Harper's Mill ROME model I was talking to my SR about a couple of things and somehow got on the topic of certain options when I discover that one of the options (bronze faucets in all bathrooms) was not included in the last ADDENDUM that we signed.  WHAT!!!!! So tac on another $1200 bucks because my SR "missed" this particular option! AAARRGGGGHHHHH......this was just one of the several things that we had to go back and add in over the last couple of weeks when we thought that it was already in the contract.  Fortunately none of them were structural options so we didn't get hit with the $600 per change charge...BUT STILL!

So to those of you who may be starting this process of building a home- BEWARE OF THE OPTIONS list.  It can be rather in our case where we though a bronze upgrade included certain things but it actually didn't.  Ask questions! Read the blogs! We have been able to find so much useful information regarding the home building process that our SR didn't EVER mention!  Don't EVER ASSUME that something, anything, you see in the model is included because it probably isn't.  My advice is you go room by room and painstakingly go through EVERYTHING and if you like it ask the SR if its included (make sure you are specific to the neighborhood to which you are planning on building as it can differ by in our case where the granite was included in the neighborhood that had the model but not in the neighborhood that we are moving into even though its like 1 mile apart).  Finally, document your conversations with the SR- keep any emails that you send to ensure that you keep them on track.  Not that it will do anything to eliminating the cost of the options but we've got to keep these SRs in line.  They can't just think that because they have you hooked that they can do whatever they want.

Okay so just Check, Doublecheck and Triple check EVERYTHING! This is your house, your money and your future...don't let them push you around!


  1. Good post.... I agree that it's a good idea to know is standard and what is an upgrade. Maybe they should have a pamphlet of some sort at the model that states all of that material.... It would make life much easier for them and us :)

  2. 110% in agreement, stuff was missed in our pre construction meeting too and we had to pay for it when we thought it was already in the price....I feel your pain....I did get some killer deals though and incentives so I try to focus on the positive, things get missed, but why do we pay for it? But I try to think they made up for it by framing the study for french doors and ordering those for me on the side after closing for us to install.....but everything missed for us was over $1000.00...

  3. It's an arduous task, important nonetheless. I found I missed items because the verbiage and codes are sometimes vague, or abbreviated.

    - no backsplash in kitchen
    - no banister in stairwell
    - no concrete driveway
    - no crown molding
    - no stairs on deck

    At the last minute, we approved the banister and concrete driveway. The others I can tackle myself, or contract out.

  4. My advice is to read through the options line by line and highlight the things that are YES in one color and MAYBE in another color and prioritize. That way you can look at your budget and add the things that are highest priority first. As for SR, I was disappointed in how little time they spent discussing major options. For instance, I had no idea that it was possible to add a backsplash in the kitchen. Our SR never mentioned it and when I went through the crazy upgrade list, I did not see it (Tiny font used and overwhelming amount of choices). Once I started reading blogs, I realized this was possible but it was too late to add. So, after we move in, I will have to hire someone to do this.
    Also, our SR was clearly against certain upgrades and did a convincing job of talking us out of a few (which I am now glad about, like ORB throughout the house). I'm not sure why, maybe they have just seen too many issues with certain upgrades or Ryan does not like doing them but know what you want and try to visualize it in your home. Add what you think is important to YOU.