A few months ago when my husband and I first began talking about building a Ryan home, I turned to the Internet for information. Along with many negative reviews, I found a great blog that documented a person's journey with Ryan. I've followed it (and a couple of others that have popped up) and have found it very helpful and reassuring. We made our decision to build with Ryan and I decided that even if no one else read it, I'd start a blog to document our journey. It is our family's history in the making.
Last week we signed our purchase agreement and began our journey to building our Ryan Home. We weren't planning on building quite yet, but we decided to move forward! We actually had to enter a raffle for our lot because there were 4 lots that were being released and 6 families interested in them. It was an interesting experience, and while we didn't get our first choice, we got our second choice of lots. The neat thing was that this unique raffle allowed us to meet our future neighbors! How fun! Though we're starting the process now, we won't break ground until October and the house will be finished in February. Right in the middle of winter!
While I was filled with excitement a week ago, we've realized that we need to make some changes on our original plan to be sure that we can afford our new home without being house poor. I know in the end we will be totally thrilled with the house we build, but we now must decide what to "sacrifice". All along we decided to do mainly structural upgrades. We figure there are a lot of things we can do ourselves after we move in - flooring, faucets, fixtures, etc... While that's still the plan, we now have to give up one or a couple of the structural upgrades we were planning on. At first, we were going to build the Florence. When we learned that the Phase 2 price increase was only going to be $4,000 rather than the predicted $10,000 we decided to upgrade to the Venice. The main difference was that this house had about 200 more square feet, larger bedrooms, and more closet space, yet had a very similar floor plan downstairs to the Florence which we really liked. So now that we have to give something up, one of the considerations is going back to the Florence. Another consideration is keeping the Venice and losing the morning room, which I really, REALLY love and feel makes the downstairs! The other option and may be combined with the downgrade in house model, would be to do all vinyl siding rather than the all brick front that we were originally planning. I'm feeling very conflicted! I am looking forward to our 14 day deadline when all of these decisions need to be finalized. If anyone has any advice, I'd love to hear it!
Tomorrow we have our flooring appointment! That should be fun. Then we sit down and seriously talk about what we need to make our monthly payment more comfortable.