Measure Twice, Cut Three Times

I obsess about the big picture – am I on budget, will I meet my project deadline, are my partners happy, are the contractors doing good work – things like that.

My wife…my wife obsesses about the finishes.  She’ll spend 15 minutes debating me about shades of gray (hehe), the placement of the kitchen island, the budget (“but for $200 more, this is light fixture soooo much better”) … and that’s exactly what I need!  I have little interest in being bothered with that kind of stuff; I’ve got far bigger issues to deal with.

With that said, it’s no surprise that I missed a rather glaring issue in out master bedroom that she saw within the first 5 seconds of stepping in the room.

As we’ve wrote about in the past, the master bedroom went through several iterations – we ended up expanding the size of the closet and adding a large fireplace.   This all happened after we had drawn new electrical for overhead lights.   You get the picture … the lighting placement just didn’t look right after we moved things around.

The first time we moved the light placement was after we expanded the closet.  I told my electrician to “center it.”  I never looked at it again.

My wife, however, quickly realized it wasn’t “centered” with the fireplace…it just looked off.  Fortunately for me, my father is an electrical engineer and charges me $0 per hour.  A little father-son bonding and 1 hour of work, the lighting was moved for a third and final time.

Check it out below – far left hole (placement #1), large hole in the middle (placement #2), final hole centered with fireplace (placement #3).

IMG_6543

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On to the Fun Stuff!

Who knew holding down a full time job, flipping a house, managing a few rental properties, helping care for our newborn daughter (it’s mostly my wife), building a website for my father-in-law’s homebuilding business, managing a blog, trying to find some alone time for my wife and I, plus all of the other small projects that come up (tax season, ah!!!) would be so, well, time consuming?   As someone who likes to have more on my plate than I can handle, even I didn’t realize it’d be this difficult!  So you have to understand my apologies for not updating the blog as regularly as construction at the Century Home flip would allow.

So, let me catch you up to speed!  We’re about a week behind our construction schedule, but overall the project remains largely on budget. We passed our electrical inspection last week and our plumbing inspection yesterday – remember, our scope of work called for all new plumbing and electrical in the house. With all of the rough work (incl. demo & framing) done at the house, we’re finally able to move on to the fun stuff!

Our drywallers will begin hanging sheetrock tomorrow and cement board is currently being installed in both of the bathrooms in preparation for tile. Tile! My father and I delivered about 3,000 pounds of marble floor and wall tile earlier this week, which is no easy task.  The plan is to have both bathrooms tiled by the middle of next week.  After that, we’ll be moving on to tile flooring in the kitchen, which still needs to be picked out.

To be sure, there is still on ton of work to do, but the finish line is in sight.  At this point, it’s mostly picking out finishes – paint colors, light fixtures, countertops, etc.

Until next time!

Reader Email: DIY or Hire a Contractor?

Hi Guys.  Love the blog! Thanks so much for sharing your experiences with us; it’s awesome to see.  Flipping a house is something my husband and I have wanted to do for a while, but aren’t really sure where to start. We both have full-time jobs, so I’m not sure if we even have the time.  Do you do the work yourselves, or do you have contractors? Thanks so much.  I can’t wait to see how your latest project turns out – it’s huge!

– Joan

Hi Joan,

Thanks for the email and the
kind words! Great question. We’ve done both.

For our first property (a rental) we basically did everything ourselves (paint, tile, flooring, bathrooms, finished basement, etc).  The rehab took a total of 63 days, with my father and I working most weeknights from 6-10 and then weekends from 8am – 8pm.  We subbed out plumbing and the garage rebuild.  Between my full time job and the rehab, I was working about 80 hours a week.  It wasn’t ideal, but we saved a lot of money. We also do most all of the work at our other rental properties.  If you’re not afraid of putting in the time, then by all means do the work yourselves!  It’s a great way to appreciate and understand everything that goes into a rehab.

That said, I’ll probably never do that again.  For our Century Home flip we’ve subbed out the entire scope of the project, from electrical and plumbing to paint.  There is certainly pieces of the project we could do ourselves to save some cash, but given the size of the house there is no way we’d be able to meet our project timeline.  Managing a crew is a full-time job in and of itself, so while I may not be laying tile I’m sure I’ll be glued to my phone.

Good luck!

Why We Invest in Cleveland. #ThisIsCle

 

You may have read the stories, heard the jokes. But this isn’t the place for people who follow the herd. The city where rock was born knows a thing or two about passion. freedom. and doing it your way. No matter what. Because what they never understood, is that while they were talking about us, we weren’t listening. Under the right conditions, pressure can create diamonds. World-class experiences without the world-class ego. It’s what happens when you’re not trying to be something you’re not. We’ve never been flashy. trendy. perfect. And for that, you’re welcome. Never mainstream. Never meant to be. Always Cleveland