We’re twelve days out from the new year, so I think I’m overdue a few project diary entries. Thanks for all the kind notes here and on IG about the holiday cards. When I send them out each year I’m finished with them – I never expect feedback from recipients. I typically get a few texts or notes as they arrive, but this year I received a record amount of notes. Must have been that big jolt of color that arrived on most people’s doorsteps as a huge winter storm of snow and ice and arctic air settled in.
I may have mentioned this before, but we are acting as our own general contractor on this project. That was not the original plan, but then the project was put on hold for a few years, and now scheduling and costs are completely wacky. We don’t want to change the scope of the project, so managing it ourselves is a way to cushion some of the significant cost increases – 20% + in many cases. Painful.
I wouldn’t recommend this route, to be honest. We have the knowledge and resources to do it, but it’s still a huge hassle and a ton of work. Since we paused the project in 2020, we’ve also had big professional changes – I’m now a principal and owner of my architectural firm, and M is president of the St. Louis AIA – so we have a greater number of obligations and more pulls on our time. We also have a kid in college, so there have been some big financial changes too. Managing the project and self-performing some of the work will inevitably mean it will take longer, but it also gives us more control on when the work is happening and what the finished product will look like. We’ve operated like this as a team for 23 years now, and we enjoy it and are good at it. It’s just going to be SLOW.
Here are the catch up posts I’m committed to writing by next week:
Mid-November -basement beam installation – MEP coordination before and after
Mid-December – new mechanical systems installed just prior to E home from college
Mid-December – new lateral lines in yard
Mid-January – tree removal, surveyor, mass excavation & footings and foundations – in the throes of this as we speak