Saturday, October 8, 2011

And the journey begins...

My process started back in May 2011 while I was deployed to Iraq.  My husband and I decided to buy a home as we are currently living in two separate households (Hawaii & Virginia) and with the amount he was paying for rent for a one bedroom apt it only made sense to use that money towards our own house.  My husband sent me a few websites of home builders in the area we were looking in (Waldorf, MD) and after some extensive online research we decided to build with Ryan Homes.  The complicated part for me was that I wouldn't be able to drive to a model to see it in person anytime soon.  I contacted the sales rep at one of the communities we were interested in and she has been amazing ever since.  Through the long distance communication she sent me numerous emails with options, pictures, and cost estimates to name a few.  When I completed my tour in Iraq at the beginning of Aug I returned home to Hawaii.  I went to Maryland in mid Aug for two weeks and during this time I visited the sales rep, visited some communities and toured some models despite an earthquake and pending hurricane. The day before I was to fly back we decided on a community and a model!  Talk about a busy...

We decided on the Zachary sad that I haven't seen blogs about it but oh well I guess I can be the first!  Selections on the home haven't been so easy as I am trying to decide on colors from 4,500 miles away.  But luckily I found a Daltile showroom here that features the tiles Ryan Homes uses and Lowes carries the Bruce Hardwood Floors...challenging but not impossible!  And viewing pictures of your selections has truly been helpful.

So this is what we have so far:

Zachary Model - Elevation C with Partial Stone
Siding - Island Pearl
Shutters - Winestone
Stone - hubby will be picking the color-Bucks County Rubble
9' ceilings
2' side extension
Garage Door Opener
Side Window in Garage (county requirement)

Foyer/Powder Room/Laundry Room::
Bruce Manchester Cherry Hardwood

42" Scottsdale Maple Cognac Cabinets w/crown molding
Upgraded Kitchen with cooktop & wall oven
Standard Island
Tan Brown Granite - Ubatuba Granite
Upgraded Kitchen Faucet (not by choice, had to get due to the granite)
Ceramic Tile Floors - Fidenza Cafe
Tile Backsplash (thanks to Shara's blog)
Recessed Lights

Family Room:
Optional Side Windows
4' extension
Fireplace w/blower - Ubatuba
Recessed Lights over Fireplace
Ceiling Fan Rough In

Morning Room:
Ceramic Tile Floors - Fidenza Cafe
Optional Side Windows
Ceiling Fan Rough In

Dining Room:
Bruce Manchester Cherry Hardwood
Bay Window - Side

Living Room:
Bay Window - Side

Owner's Bedroom:
Upgraded to Alternate Luxury Owner's Bath which includes the sitting area
Ceramic Tiles - Fidenza Cafe w/Slate Radiance Saddle Accent
Upgraded cabinets to Fairfield Maple Spice
Ceiling Fan Rough In

Guest Bath:
Ceramic Tiles - Brixton Mushroom
Upgraded cabinets to Fairfield Maple Spice

Bedrooms 2 ,3 & 4:
Ceiling Fan Rough In

Basement Lvl:
Finished with Media Room
Powder Room with vinyl floor #66182
Upgraded cabinets to Fairfield Maple Spice
Recessed Lights in Basement and Media Room

My husband met with CTI and Guardian:

I was not impressed with the samples they sent so we are going with the standard carpet in the Living Rm, Family Rm, all bedrooms, stairs and basement level...we will replace at a later time.

With Guardian we chose 1 pr speaker and flat panel prewire in the family room.  7.1 surround sound and flat panel prewire in the media room as well as two pairs of speaker prewires in the basement area.  We also chose the 6pk bundle of cable outlets

We were approved on 23 September and have our pre-construction meeting on 12 October.  The one thing I am concerned about is the layout of the house on the lot.  I have read some of the disappointments with the topo of the house and lot.  And some wishing that the house was closer to the front so that they would have a decent sized back yard.  With three boys I definitely need the yard space.  Wish us luck!!!

Once I figure out how to post pictures I will post some.

Have a good one!


  1. I'm not familiar with the Zachary floor plan, but the selections you made sound great! I can't imagine going through the process being so far away. We are contingent, so I am living vicariously through other bloggers until we sell our house and can get started on our new home. Good luck through the process!

  2. Thanks Rachel, I noticed some of our selections were the same...great taste! I hope your home sells quickly so you can begin your new home journey!

  3. The Zachary is a very nice floor plan. The model home in a development we were first considering was the Zachary. Some food for thought...find out the model# of the garage door opener...usually it is a chain driven base model...we ended up getting a top of the line belt driven(extremely quiet) model installed for less then RH wanted for the option. The company that installed the garage doors actually put a sticker on the door with the garage door openers they were offering and the prices...the prices including installation were about the same as Lowes and Home Depot, but the opener is awesome...Liftmaster 8550

  4. Forgot to mention...your selections are awesome and you are going to love the quardian pre-wire are awesome...don't forget to add ethernet jacks where your TVs and/or blueray player and/or receiver are going to can use wireless, but hardwire is soooo much smoother and faster and it is so much better to do this when building instead of trying to fish wires later..especially with a finished basement...just some thoughts I had when reading through your awesome list of selections.

  5. We have a Courtland in Waldorf, MD currently and we are building an Avalon in La Plata, MD. Which neighborhood did you decide on in Waldorf? Nikki in Piney Grove is our salesperson.

  6. Our home is in Brentwood. Is your Courtland also in Piney Grove? We visited that community and liked it but the Zachary wasn't offered there. Congrats on your new home in La Plata. Looking forward to reading on your progress!

  7. Our Courtland is in Charles Crossing. You have to go through our neighborhood to get to Piney Grove. We signed a contract to have our Courtland built 10 years ago. We watched the prices skyrocket and then come right back down to where they were back then. Brentwood is a great neighborhood. I think you'll love it there.