Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Our Journey Thus Far

My fiance and I decided back in November 2010 to build a house with Ryan Homes in Western New York.  We are first time home buyers and builders so we immediately began searching the internet for information about the company and stumbled upon a few blogs about building with Ryan.  I was very impressed with the mostly positive things that people had to say about their experience despite the negative press found on the internet.  Therefore, I decided to start a blog about our journey with Ryan Homes in order to document our experience and share it with the rest of the world and our families.  We are a little further along in the building process than most who start a blog but I think this post should catch everyone up.  :) 

We got engaged in September 2010 and had been looking to buy a house to move into as we are outgrowing our apartment.  When looking at resale homes, we discovered that any house within our price range would have to have renovations to live up to our standards.  We happened to stumble upon Ryan Homes at the suggestion of my mom.  She thought we should "make sure we explored all our options."  We stopped by a Ryan model home and met with the sales rep. and she spent two hours with us talking about pricing and options.  We were very impressed.  After much thought and deliberation along with sleepless nights we decided to move forward.  We signed a purchase agreement with Ryan in November 2010 and applied for our mortgage soon after.  Within a few weeks, we were approved and ready to begin our journey!  Here are the details about the house we are building with Ryan:

  • We are building a Florence, Elevation B with no stone/brick, just siding
  • We chose the three bedroom w/ the loft (it is just the two of us right now and if we need a fourth bedroom down the line, it is a simple fix to put up one wall to make a fourth bedroom)
  • Upgraded kitchen cabinets to 42" Cherry Spice with island (extra tall cabinets due to our 9' ceilings)
  • Crown molding for kitchen cabinets (nice finished look)
  •  Appliance package (black stove, over stove microwave, and dishwasher) 
  • We also are having them install an ice maker kit so we will have a connection in the wall
  • Upgraded to maple spice double sink in master bath and maple spice cabinet in second bath (this was the only dispute between my future hubby and I, he didn't see the need for two sinks and I HAD to HAVE them...needless to say I WON!)
  • Pine stair with oak handrail upstairs (otherwise would have been a half wall...yuck!)
  • Upgraded light package to brushed nickel light fixtures throughout the house
  • An extra overhead light in the dining room
  • Extra outlet in garage
  • 2nd light on the garage (looks so unbalanced without it)
  • Future Tube for our Flat Screen Television in the living room (this is so you don't see any wires hanging from the tv)
  • Recessed lighting: 5 in kitchen, 4 in living room
  • Upgraded carpet padding throughout the entire house
 They recently broke ground a few weeks ago (January 19, 2011) and since then there has been a lot of progress on the outside of the house.  We expect to close around the end of April or early May.  We are one of the last houses to be built in this phase of the neighborhood.  There is actually another house that is making progress a few days ahead of us.  It is fun to see what their house looks like and we say to ourselves, "That's what ours will look like in a day or two."  Here are some pictures of the process so far:

Our lot (November 2010)
  Putting the sold sign on the lot (November 2010)
Our cabinet/countertop/flooring selections for the kitchen
Breaking ground :) (1/19/2011)
Foundation poured (1/20/2011)
Backfilled with dirt (its looks so small!) 1/27/2011
We have a first floor! (1/31/2011)
And a SECOND FLOOR (2/1/2011)

That is as far as they have gotten up until this point.  We had a snow storm today and travel was difficult so we didn't make it out to check on progress.  However, I also don't think that the guys would have been working today anyway...too much blowing snow and chilly temps.  Our pre-drywall walk through is next Friday so we are excited to see the progress happening inside at that point.  My dad is traveling out to help us walk through and make sure everything is looking good.  He is our "house specialist" as he has been dubbed a "handy man" his whole life.  We are happy to have someone like that in our lives because otherwise we would need to hire our own inspector.  We are very excited to see the progress over the coming weeks! Stay tuned!


  1. I'm so glad to have a new blog to follow! Welcome to our little "blogging family." Congratulations on your new home. Your house looks great. I love the Florence Elevation B! I also like your flooring and cabinet selections. I'm looking forward to watching your progress.

  2. Looking forward to watching the progress on your new home Congrats

  3. Welcome to the Ryan Homes blogging world. It's amazing how many of them there are now. Look forward to follow your progress and I am jealous. We won't break ground until probably June/July.

  4. Welcome to the family!!! :) We broke ground around the same time, however we dont even have a first floor yet....we'll see how it looks on blog is

  5. Also..i wonder why your closing date is so far out...We are expected to close end of march first week of april....and were not even under roof yet...I wish it was like extreme makeover and our houses could be done in two weeks tops!!! Could u imagine????

  6. Thanks everyone for the warm welcome!

    India-We actually asked for them to push our closing date back because of our current lease situation with our apartment..and it would be great if it was like extreme makeover! I'm so anxious to get in there and start decorating!

  7. You were right to get double sinks in the master bath. Have you seen what it looks like with just one sink? They don't even put cabinets under the counter and in one of my neighbors houses they only put a small mirror above the one sink! Totally stupid! Anyway, congrats on your next door neighbor and good friend has the florence, elevation B with similar options to what you picked. I'll see if she'll let me take some pictures to post on my blog.