Saturday, January 24, 2009

Exterior Design Decisions (and more demo!)

So, demolition is well on its way. Our back porch is pretty much gone and the garage is about three-quarters gone. If the workers continue until 5, I would imagine it will be pretty much completely gone. Next week, the heavy machinery comes in to pull out our exterior basement stairs and start digging for the foundation. A big week here!

So, even though the project has started, the decision-making has only just begun as well. For a long time (even before we owned this house) we had hoped to install fake slate recycled rubber shingles instead of asphalt. After a lot of soul-searching and budget crunching, it just did not make sense to spend an extra $10,000 on that. So, we have decided on architectural asphalt. Our builder is bringing samples over next week so we can make a decision and he can get it ordered. The shingles go on pretty much right after the framing.

Windows are another thing that needs to be decided short-term. We know that we want Andersen 400 series windows. We have Andersen Renewal windows (installed 2 years ago by The Window Place) in the old part of the house so we want the new windows to match as closely as possible and you cannot beat the great classic look combined with the no-maintenance clad Andersen windows. They really fit our house and our budget. We did remind our builder that we have white interiors and sandtone exterior. This would have been a horrible mistake had we not specified this in advance. It's important to note that Andersen window orders must be placed at least 4 weeks in advance of when you think you may need them. It's okay if they sit in a warehouse before they are installed but you do not want to be waiting for windows.

We are also making decisions on siding. We are going to use Hardie cement board siding but there are many options to consider include width of the boards, trim boards, and pre-painted (or unpainted). Samples of those will be here this week too. We are hoping to find a pre-painted color that we like so that we can avoid the additional cost of painting the exterior as well, and we get a better warranty on the finish.

It's amazing how you start to get used to the sound of hammer drills!

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