We had been talking about adding on to the house for a while. It's a good size now, but it just wasn't perfect for our family yet. The living room is my "office" with papers and craft projects usually sprawled all over the dining room, Keith wants a soundproof room to play his electric guitar, we only have 2 bedrooms upstairs, our master bathroom is also our main guest bathroom, our master closet is a bit small, and some other things. As soon as we found out that we were expecting a second child, we had a fire lit under us to get started on the addition.
Within about 2 weeks of finding out about being pregnant, we contacted a contractor and I started frantically drawing up ideas to present to the contractor. We worked with the first contractor for about a month before deciding that he wasn't the right person for our job. We then started working with an architect who came highly recommended to us by THE metal structural engineer in the area to come up with the exact plans that we wanted. The plans stage took ALOT longer than I expected, but about 5 months later we finally had something that we were happy enough with to start getting bids on it. We worked with a second contractor who was new to general contracting. We hoped that his enthusiasm for the job would make up for his lack of experience, but when we didn't have even an inital estimate from him 3 months later, we decided to get a bid from a 3rd contractor while we waited to hear back from contractor #2. Before contractor 2 even responded to us, we had a bid back from contractor 3 within 2 weeks! After doing some research about contractor 3, we decided that he was the right person for our project! Contractor 3 is young and energetic, LOVES our house and the idea of working on it, and he's very excited to have our project for his portfolio and potential marketing in magazines.
So... this afternoon, we FINALLY signed a contract and wrote our first huge check! The contract states that permits will be done within 90 days and construction will be completed within 6 months of receiving the permits! That means that in no more than 9 months we'll have our addition completed!!! The contractor even said that it's realistic that it won't take nearly that long and he expects to be done by late February! After such slow progress on the plans and working with contractor 2, it's refreshing to work with someone who is on top of things and wants to get them done quickly and right!
What is involved in this "addition"? LOTS! We're basically adding on a detached 2 car garage (which will look like a miniature version of the barn); filling in the current workshop with Annabelle's bedroom, Corgan's bedroom, a soundproof media/entertainment room, and a hallway; enlarging the current workshop bathroom by taking space from the current guest bathroom and making that the kids' bathroom; keeping a little of the workshop space in the main house structure (for cat litter, garbage cans, the water treatment equipment, etc.); adding a hallway; adding a master suite on the back of the house; and adding 80 ft of porch space (some screened in, some not). If you look at the attached plans, you can see where the front door is (at the bottom left of the page, between the laundry room and the silo stairs) and from there get a feel for where everything is.
Both Annabelle (Bedroom 3) and Corgan (Bedroom 2) will have lofts in their bedrooms (the shaded areas). Annabelle's loft will consist of a landing area and a catwalk to the main loft space. Corgan will have only the main loft space on the left (the shaded part on the right in Bedroom 2 is a drop-down ceiling). The closets of the two kids' rooms will have a secret passage way between them (not so secret anymore though).
The media room will not actually have a stairwell coming down into it. We took out the stairs to save money (I still need to get the latest prints). It will have french doors to the outside though. The porch will come off of the media room too and wrap all of the way around to the back of the house.
The master suite will have a garden tub in the bedroom, a huge shower, and a big walk-in closet (much bigger than we currently have anyway). The bedroom also has french doors to the screened in part of the porch outside.
The contractor is planning to get a temporary land development permit and they are scheduled to break ground early next week at the latest! I can't wait to get this started, and I'm even more excited about getting it done! Yea!!!