Friday, April 29, 2011


We talked to our loan rep who talked to their boss. Boss Man said all the final paperwork to make this new mortgage company a broker (or whatever) for NVR should be finalized today. Meaning on Monday we SHOULD be able to fill out the application (you know, that 1 single piece of paper we are missing to send this all to underwriting). But I have quickly learned that "SHOULD" doesn't always mean will. And lately for us, it rarely means will. lol So we'll see. The important thing is, everything is moving along. =)

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Interesting Night

I took the kids to see the lot tonight. They wanted to see it. And SURPRISE!! Two of the neighbor men were out, one with his kids. One of the little boys was having a blast on our lot. lol I parked just before the intersection. I didn't want to frighten the kids. My kids got out, played, and did the "Mom, where am I standing now?" game.

As the daddy left he stopped by the van (I stood next to it as my littlest girl had no shoes on and was NOT getting out of the van). He introduced himself. (I am so bad with names!! =( Forgive Mr. Neighbor-man...not that I would post it here). He seemed very nice. Turns out they moved down from Pittsburgh not long ago and his mom is the administrator at the elementary school my kids will be slated to go too. =) He had two of the cutest little boys ever! They were about my two youngest kids' ages. He seemed very friendly. Can't wait to meet his wife!

But the whole time we are talking, I kept thinking "What if we don't become neighbors after all?" I had a bad feeling in the pit of stomach. I am hoping I am just being paranoid. Do you know how hard it is to watch your kids 55+ yards away, keep the one in car calm, carry on a conversation, and be thinking that the whole time? lol I was afraid I'd say something stupid. That's more like me...foot in mouth disease. lol

The lumber for the Naples next to/across from us was delivered today. They spent the day digging and blowing up the GRANITE on that site. Grrrreeeaaat. lol

Two big metal bins now sit in front of our lot. and more dirt looks like it has been put down, along with more stakes in the ground...which was kinda weird. So I guess they were there today.

Apparently the few people in that neighborhood are excited to be seeing people come in, and curious about the houses too. lol

It was a neat night. The kids are STOKED!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Pre-Con meeting was today!

We had our pre-construction meeting this afternoon. And our P.M. is AWESOME!!! We'll call him "J." J. was VERY knowledgeable, and friendly!

So here's the breakdown:

Planning on breaking ground May 10th (the day I picked in my last post for my guess as to knowing about final approval. If you want to play the game, just list the day on the last post. we had to make some changes due to new information.). The lot has already has some work done to it. He said he considers "breaking ground" actually digging the holes for the mortars (is that right?). The house directly next to us is scheduled to break ground either the same week or the week after us. And since we're on a corner, the house right across the street, to the side of us, is about to pour the foundation already! (it's a Naples). So the lots right around me will all be done all around the same time! =)

Right now, the projected closing date is July 25th! I had been guessing July 21st all along. So we'll see!! =) (The 25th is a Monday, I'd love to around the 21st so we can have some help moving over the weekend and have the week of the 25th to clean up our rental before the 1st of August).

Our front yard only will get sod. However, if it's too hot and dry and here, they will wait until September-ish to put it out. Our HVAC unit will be located on the side of the house, next to the garage (we have side entry).

We went over every option in the house and where it would be located. He liked the idea of the outlet in the closet. =)

I have a paper somewhere with notes on it, but I can't find it. =( Something about pressurizing our ventilation system so there is less than 2% leakage (makes it energy star!). They also do something around the windows to make sure no air comes in or goes out there as well.

The slab has a moisture barrier below it! =) And Killingsworth treats the slab and bottom of the wood for bugs and termites. And something about an R19 rating?? I wish I could find that darn paper. He also said that if we wanted more than just the basic landscaping (shrubs and such in front of the house) we can talk to the landscapers ourselves and work something out. Hubby wants the WHOLE yard sodded. Wonder how expensive that will get?

He explained what we all already knew: That the closing date is only the goal date not set in stone. After the pre-drywall meeting, we'll get a letter with the actual closing date on it. (so maybe it will be July

We went to the lot together and it was graded down and staked already! =) He asked if we had any questions. J. is cool. We like him.

Our poor Rep, C., tried to take part in the meeting, but unfortunately, someone just showed up and took her attention the whole time. lol She is ALWAYS busy!

J. said he would give us weekly updates on Fridays. =) That excited me!

All and all a good meeting. It took about an hour. Our next official meeting with be with Guardian to stake out where the electrical will be, then the pre-dry wall.

Also found out a friend of a friend is moving into the neighborhood all the way from NY! So who knows! =)

Is all this really happening? It's VERY exciting!

Let the rest of the journey begin!! =)

we will have a public walkway in front of the house and around the corner. And YES, the developer will extend the road to at least cover our yard. lol We didn't want to drive in dirt to get to our driveway. So we will have a paved a road there. =) Eventually it will go all the down (you can see the posts for the other homes in the background).

Who's in? new game! lol

With the new information we need to start over b/c we aren't finding out this week! lol

So, who wants to play? Same reward, I will write a post about you! =)

Name the day(or days) you think we may hear back from our lovely mortgage company!

I'm going with Tues. May 10th.

Anyone? Bueller?

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Understanding = May we called the mortgage company directly and talked to our Loan Officer there.

Because they are new, they need some legal stuff signed by NVR, broker stuff. We can't fill out the app until then. They "SHOULD" have it this week. Then it will take about a week. So we are looking at sometime in May. In the words of Charlie Brown, "UGH!". lol

Dare I hope for a YES answer before Mother's Day? Probably not. Doesn't seem to be my luck.

We also learned we can only lock in the rate at 45-50 days out with this company instead of 60. Ok. I have to trust God knows what He is doing here.

But, I can say that it has helped to have this understanding. So If they get by this Friday, It will probably be the Second week of May (knowing our So that's our update, if you're interested.

What a bad dream! lol And what did your's say?

So I woke up today with a "start", so to speak.

I woke up from this horrible dream where we were looking through the house, we were a few days a way from closing. And I noticed that all the faucets were all wrong! I don't think anyone in their right mind even makes such tiny, ugly faucets. Only my imagination! lol You know those ones in public restrooms where you push down the handle and water comes out for like 10 seconds? Yeah. Those were it, only smaller!! Looked real tacky in the kitchen. I didn't know how I was going to do dishes. lol

Anyway, in the dream, I was freaking out, because Closing was a few days away, we couldn't reach our PM or our Rep, and we still didn't have final approval.

What a horrible dream!! When I woke up, I had the thought: "I bet our realtor would have caught some of this." Then it hit me... OMGosh!! I forgot to call her and tell her that our pre-con meeting is tomorrow!! She wanted to be there! I wanted her to be there!

I got up and FBed her right away. I still haven't heard from her. I'm such a crappy person sometimes! =( I hope she can forgive me!

So, in other news, my baby girl is sick and now my eldest and I seem to have some kind of creepy crud too. Add this to the bad dream and bad day, I want so bad to drive the 30 minutes over to the model and look around. But at this point, I'm not so sure it would cheer me up. The mortgage company STILL hasn't sent us the application to fill out. You know, that 1 piece of paper we're missing. *sigh* So I'm not sure if going over would cheer me up or stress me out more. LOL SO I'm blogging instead.

I did look back over our pre-approval letter. I love where it says: "Name of Mortgage Company is pleased to inform you that your mortgage request has been approved on the above referenced property." LOL I love that on the top in bold print it says LOAN COMMITMENT.

The rest of it just goes on to say that any change in our financial situation could adversely affect this approval and that we needed to get a list of stuff in before closing. I don't like the amount was for our offer and not the final price. But I do know that they asked for the ratified contract and all addendums in that list of stuff to turn in before closing. So....

Oddly enough, reading this kinda cheered me up. LOL So I guess that helped. lol

What did your pre-approval letter say that you just loved?

Anyway... Thanks for letting me ramble. I just needed to waste some time. I REALLY don't feel like doing chores. lol

Monday, April 25, 2011

Loan Status Update

Wow. Ok, so my DH calls our Loan Rep just to check on the progress of things (we sent it out last Monday). The LR (Loan Rep) tell us that "oops" they need us to fill out an application for THIS particular mortgage company. They only have the one for NVR we had filled out. Did it really take them an ENTIRE week to figure this out?


I HOPING that they have looked over everything else and are close to being ready to give us an answer ("approved" being the answer we are looking for), but need this last little bitty piece of paper(s) *drippings with sarcasm*. Our LR did tell us that we "should" have an answer by weeks end. We'll see.....

So our holding pattern continues. I SOOOOOOO wanted an answer before we went to our Pre-con meeting this Wed. But that doesn't look to be the case any longer. It would have been a load off our backs if we did get it. It would allow us to thoroughly enjoy the process. Instead, we go to every meeting holding our breaths. Not knowing is hard. Oh well, soon enough we will have our answers. What's another few more days? It's already been 2 months. lol

Saturday, April 23, 2011


(I know, I'm a day early, but...)

I hope you all enjoy this lovely holiday weekend! I'm sure we're all very busy. =) May it bring you lots of joy!

Friday, April 22, 2011


Ok, another blog has me worried.

We upgraded to stainless and it comes with a GE dishwasher model GLD5660RSS.

Does anyone know if this is a "quiet" dishwasher?

@ Bitty

Ok, I just figured out my SPAM folder. =/ And for some reason, your comments were in it. =( I'm so sorry! I didn't put them there, ignore you, or anything like that!

I'm so so sorry!!!

I have marked them NOT SPAM now!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Let's have some fun!!!

Ok...we all know we're waiting for final approval. This started out as joke btwn my sister and me but lets do this here!

When do you think we'll hear the news (hear from the mortgage company)? They got it in their hands this past Tuesday, April 19th.

Let's see who is the closest. The winner gets bragging rights. LOL Oh, I know! I'll write a post about how "Awesome" the winner is!

I just can't sit here and stress. Let's make it fun. Let's make it a game! Smack talking is allowed....on a friendly basis.

My guess is next Tuesday, late afternoon.

Anyone else want to play? What's your guess?

Anons: you can play too. Just put a symbol, letter, something in your post so if another anon posts, we can tell which one is which. =)



I have two kids not feeling well. The baby being the worst right now. I just want to fix it for them. I am doing all I can, but sometimes you just feel like it's not enough.

On top of this, I am anxious. VERY ANXIOUS and frustrated.

My loan rep got back to me. We seem to have a pre-con meeting next Wed. That excites me. What excites me more is that she is off today and got back to me. That's a first! That really did a lot for how I feel about this whole mess. I was originally told to expect a call about this last week. Now the actual meeting won't be until next week. They couldn't prelim our stuff to this week. It happens. It is what it is, and I am relieved to finally have a date and time. =) You have NO idea how crapped out I have been feeling today and this did a lot for me. Thank you C.!!! =D

I can only HOPE we will have approval before then. I was so hoping to have good news to give to my kids and family for Easter. Week's not over yet, but I'm not sure if underwriters work on Good Friday. *shrugs* So it looks like it may sometime next week before we know. With our luck, the END of next week. =/

I know we aren't the only ones waiting. I know Ryan would like the go ahead too. I think EVERYONE will feel better once the answer comes in.

Our lives feel like they are on pause right now. We are just waiting. This is so want something more than anything.... and not be in control of it. To have to wait and trust. It's very hard.

So, my life is a bit frustrating right now. And maybe my headaches and sick kids aren't helping that frustration. I am soooo ready for something to "right" for us. You know?

Anyway, I needed to vent. Thanks for letting me. And thank you C. for getting back to me on your day off. You have renewed some of my waning faith in all of this. You have NO idea what that means to me right now.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

playing around . . .

I was playing around on my computer tonight trying to figure out a way to put our new cabinets with the old pics. This is what I came up with. lol So it's the white maple butterscotch cabinets in the top pic with the granite in the first pic (the amber/honey color) and flooring right there under it not labeled. (the cabinets are not pure white, more antique like, distressed. It matches our kitchen table! lol)

We kept everything else the same (all the flooring). And our railing is cherry and the both upstairs baths.

Anyway, Just thought I'd share. I'm so corny. lol


I went to edit my blog and at the top it says STATS. check that out!!

My blog has been viewed by:

The United States 7148 times
Indonesia 24 times
Iran 23 times
Denmark 18 times
United Kingdom 16 times
Ukraine 8 times
Romania 4 times
Canada 3 times
India 2 times
Russia 2 times

I'm world wide baby! lol Seriously though, why are people in some of these countries viewing my blog so much? Crazy, huh? I didn't think Ryan Homes built in some of these places.

If you check out the stats, you also learn what browsers are looking you up (firefox, chrome, mobile, internet explorer, ect.) and what operating systems people have used (windows, ipads, blackberry, macintosh, ect.).

Under traffic sources, you can see who else has referred you.

You can see how may views each blog entry has gotten. Look around. It's kinda neat!

I just wish there was a way to see everyone who was viewing and following me (you know, the ones who are invisible). lol

Seriously, I am a bit concerned about some of these views. I just don't understand why? They never comment, so I am leery of ANYONE (I don't care what country you are from, including ours) who just lurks and never comments. Maybe it's just me. lol

So anyway, check your own stats! It's kinda neat!

Cleaning Granite Countertops

Since we are getting granite in the kitchen, I thought I'd look up efficient ways to clean it. I found a neat site:

The people here all give some good ideas and I thought I'd pass it along to ya'll! One posted response says Ubba Tuba doesn't need sealing. You may want to research this some of you Ubba Tuba granite bloggers!

Enjoy! Happy Reading!

Haggling the price of your Ryan Home

Did you know that you can make an offer on the house you want to build with Ryan? YUP!

We sat down, picked out options, came up with what the price "should be", or as my hubby in the car biz puts it "sticker price", on the house. We have realtor who was also there. We then talked and made an offer and signed the papers with the Ryan Rep. In a few days time, she got back to us with the counter offer, and we took it. It was close to where we really wanted to be, and like I said, a GREAT deal!

Some things to know when making your offer:

1. Put as many options as you can in the first time. You will be adding stuff later, but the more you have in, the better.

2. Ryan Homes accepts and/or counters deals based on 1 thing: DP (Direct Profit). From our understanding of this in our area, they try to stay in the 21-23% direct profit range. This is where all those options come in handy. Some of those you can get at about 50% off, others are already a steal. But it can really knock the price down of the home, since they are truly concerned with is their profit margin. Also why a realtor comes in handy here.

3. Their counter is their final offer, unless you change some options. They will not haggle past that, again due to the DP margin they must keep.

4. Having a realtor does not, NOT, affect the price of the home. We were told that Ryan has a separate account they pay the realtors their 2.5% out of. So if you can get one to help you, DO IT! They know their stuff!

These are pretty much the gold standards with Ryan Homes when haggling on price. =) We were the 2nd contract signed on a new neighborhood. They were really wanting to get things moving quickly (when people see progress, they tend to follow it). So we did get a sweet deal, plus the unexpected incentive money last month due to the developer dropping land prices. All and all, let's just say....we are saving btwn 15-25K on the house's "sticker price". Again, special circumstances with both the land price drop AND being one of the first in the neighborhood. But good deals are out there and can be had!

Just remember those 3/4 points above and you'll also get a sweet deal on your Ryan Home!

Monday, April 18, 2011


I can't believe I'm going to do this~! But this seems to be a pretty tightly knit group, so here I go (plus two of you I now know on FB! =P )

Hello. My name is Noelle (like Christmas, noel). I am married to the love of my life and this year we will celebrate 12 years of marriage. Next month we will have been couple 13 years.

We have 3 beautiful daughters (at least I think they are). =) My eldest is 9. My middle girl will be 6 in June, and my baby will be 2 in June. Yeah...2 birthdays in June, EXACTLY two weeks apart. YIKES~! lol

My middle girl struggles with asthma, badly. ='( It effects every aspect of her health. A cold is never just a cold. She has spent more time in the hospital than I care to re-count. She's my sickest girl. She was born sick with fever and jaundice. At 2 months old she was hospitalize with a fever of 104.7. I can remember packing her ice soaked towels with the nurse. She had to have an IV in her head because she was too sick and dehydrated to for them to get one in anywhere else (and they tried...a lot.) But she never lets her sickness get her down. She is so full of love and life! I can remember one time, she got the stomach flu. She couldn't keep anything down for 5 days. FIVE DAYS!!! After all the dr. visits and everything. It took her falling under her own weight, too weak to stand, before she ever stopped smiling and shed a tear. She's so brave. (the dr. finally admitted her to the hospital at that point...she stayed 3 days).

My eldest is so smart and witty and funny! And she loves to help out. And my youngest is my strong-willed child. lol But also very funny. And TALL!!! Not even 2 yet and in 4t clothing!

My husband and I have struggled all our marriage (financially, with our middle girl's illnesses, ect.), but we've survived. And honestly, I'm glad for it. We been to hell and back. And it's only strengthened our marriage. I know he is the ONLY one for me. I love him with all my heart. Our family means the world to us. I'll take this marriage, that has been full of and pain, over one that hasn't been tested any day of the week. I know where we stand. I know now, no matter what life throws at us, we will make it through, together. =) It's very peaceful, very wonderful place to be. (don't get me wrong, I'd love a little season of easy going. lol)

So this is me. This is us. He works 60+ hours a week at his place of employment, and he works from home. But, he also makes time for family, so I can't complain. he's my superman. I stay home and raise our children. When our youngest turns 3 next year, I want to re-enter the work force (child-care rates go down at 3 yrs of age). Maybe I'll be a lunch lady at a school. It would give the opportunity to be home when my kids get off the bus, and have every holiday and "snow" day off they do. =) I know it isn't glamorous. It doesn't have to be. It just has to make money, and allow me to still be there for my kids. My family has always and will always come first.

(I'm not knocking working moms at all!! I have the utmost respect for them! They do it all!! They rock!!! They are some of the strongest, most together women I know!)

So this is me, Noelle, removing part of veil. Welcome to my life. lol

TODAY'S THE DAY!! update

Today's the day it all goes to final underwriting. I have prayed a bunch! I place this in God's hands. I'm so excited and nervous all at once. Hopefully by early next week, we'll a GREAT answer! =)


Don't know if you have followed the comments or not but...

at 10:15 tonight, my DH got an email from the loan rep. ALL IS ACCOMPLISHED!! =)

Friday, April 15, 2011

*deep breath*

OK. All our paperwork is in. She is over-nighting it on Monday. Underwriting will have it Tuesday. *another deep breath*. This is it. It all comes down to this.

On another note, here was our final selection for the kitchen:

Not thrilled with this picture. Bad lighting. In person and on line there is more of a honey tone to it, less gray.

Wishful Thinking

So.... Our government and budget thing is still "ify" right? Then there is rising gas prices, which jacks up the prices on food and such (it did a few years ago). Now, b/c of the tragedy in Japan, the price of just about everything else is going up too. Need a car? A tv? A fridge? Anything that pretty much requires a microchip or is highly technically advanced has parts made in Japan. Even Ford and I believe Dodge are cutting back on production b/c they use parts made in Japan.

So with everything about to get more expensive, and the "rising" economy on shaky ground, is it too much to hope for that Mortgage Interest Rates will drop in the next month or two?

I know, wishful thinking. But one can always hope!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Benefits to building with Ryan Homes

When we decided a few months ago to start the process with Ryan Homes, I asked questions, got advice, and went online to do research. I quickly realized a lot of what is online, for any company in any business, is negative. After all, it is mostly un-satisfied customers who to take the web, the satisfied ones simple just go about their lives. I did run across a blog ThrifyAmy was writting about her experience and it set something off inside me. I would blog about my experience too. The good, the bad, the ugly. I would be truthful, and let others draw their own conclusions.

And so, my blog was started. =)

Since starting this blog, I have done a little bit of research and from what I learned, there are definite benefits to building with Ryan Homes, and a draw back or two.


1. All Ryan Homes are Energy Star homes. They meet and/or exceed the government standards for this. Did you know they have to pass an inspection to qualify for this? Your house will have to pass too. And when it does, can you say "tax write-off"? =) There are also loans out there, "green loans", for homes like this. Our local credit union has one, and it's amazing. Check into this and do your research!

2. We were told to make sure to put in our contract that we wanted a pre-dry wall inspection. It's there, we provide the inspector and pay the fee. But I have learned that Ryan has a pre-dry wall meeting with every customer. You get to walk through the home with your PM (project manager)and look at everything and address any concerns you have before the dry-wall is put up. This is STANDARD!

3. They don't build "inventory homes" (homes that are just built and sit there until they are sold). They only build a home once a contract has been made with the customer. I like this. It means there are not a lot of empty homes sitting around waiting for young, rebellious, teenagers to do with as they wish.

4. Ryan homes is one of the top 10 builders in the USA. And some sites list them as in the top 5. Did you know that? They are able to build homes in approximately 3-4 months vs. 6-12. Everything is pre-cut at local plants and then shipped to the site. This process allows Ryan to pass savings onto their clients/customers.

5. Post sale meetings!!! Yup, you read that right. Ryan meets with you 30 days after you move in to address any issues you have, and fix them (does a door stick? floor squeak?). This is only the first of 2 meetings.
The second takes place around the 10-11 month mark. This meeting is also to address any concerns that have come up with in your first year in the home, and get those fix if needed (example: nail pops in the wall). How many builders out there offer these? Many will just hand you the keys at closing and then "good luck to you".

6. The Ryan Homes bloggers!! I have met such a wonderful community of people online that offer you real support, answer your questions, and are GENUINELY excited for you because they are going through it all too. They are amazing.

However, I there is one draw back I have found. I call it "nickle and dimeing you". Ryan homes gives you 2 phone jacks, 2 tv jacks. The dinning room I believe comes with a light, and there is florescent in the kitchen that comes standard. All other rooms come with a switch on the wall to turn a light you have plugged in. You want over head lighting (or more fans), you have to pay for the pre-wire. Then if you want Ryan to put in the lights, you to pay for those too. They are NOT included. =/

We opted for a light rough-in (pre-wire in the ceiling) for the study and for 3 more fan rough-ins in the other 3 bedrooms and have one in the Den and Bedroom. However, we are NOT paying Ryan to supply these. We already have 2 fans. I'm not sure if Ryan will supply the one for the Den and Master Bedroom or not. But it's slightly cheaper to do it on our own, plus, we have a hook-up who should be able to help with cost. =)

So, I'm not real happy about the having to pay for lights ON TOP of rough-ins. But so far, that is my ONLY complaint. =) I think if you are paying for the rough-in, they should be included. I don't want to pay for fixtures in my mortgage payment. You know?

So there you go. My honest take on building with Ryan Homes.

Bloggers, feel free to fix any mistakes I may have made and comment about your experiences!

I wonder.....Curious

This is an article I found online about the community I am buying in.

Background: This article was written a few years ago. Back then the development was started, but then abandoned after less than 10 houses were built b/c the developer went bankrupt. It sat abandoned for 2 years. It is now re-open and Wells Fargo is developing the property.

The price points and names of the sections of changed (prices dropped drastically, they now start in the 140's). The elementary school is already built and open.

I wonder how much of this the new developer is planning to keep too. We were told, as far as our Rep knew, that were going to try to keep the original plans for the development as much as possible.

Here's the article:

I have to tell you about a wonderful new community being planned in Concord, NC. I visited today and found LOTS of information about The Mills at Rocky River. This community is being developed by Grace Development , Crosswinds Development, and Ryan Homes is the primary builder. Ryan Homes currently has three different price points open in four different phases of the neighborhood. The first price point is The Manor. These homes are located on roughly .2 acre. They start in the $220,000s. The next price point if The Estates. These homes are on roughly .25 acre and start in the $260,000s. The final price point for Ryan is The Preserve. Third of an acre lots, with a couple of lots up to half acre. These homes start in the $360,000s. Ryan plans to build both ranch and two story plans. They also have many basement lots available due to the lovely rolling topography of the land.

In addition to Ryan, the development companies are talking with several custom builders to build in two of the center sections of the neighborhood. Again, these will be larger lots and the pricing looks to start in the $500-$600,000s.

There is a future section for villas to be built. This will be for the active person who isn't quite ready for a town home but is ready to give someone else the yard work! There is a space for this project but not a date just yet. As well, town homes will wrap around a retail section. This retail was being likened to Phillip's Place by the model agent this afternoon. For those of you from out of town, Phillip's Place is quite nice. Upscale shopping, Restoration Hardware, Dean & Deluca, etc.

The map of the neighborhood also shows a space for a grocery store and a proposed elementary school. Does that mean the developer is offering the land to the county? I don't know but a GREAT location for an elementary school!! After all, CC Griffin Middle School is RIGHT next door.

The two entrances are going to have four lane boulevards to the beginning of the residences. There are several multi-level water features to be built and an awesome looking clubhouse with state of the art fitness center, meeting rooms, and kitchen. Amenities to include a resort style - zero entry pool, kiddie pool, whirl pool, and splash pad, and playground. There will be both walking trails and horse trails (several equine facilities close by!) throughout the neighborhood. And the vision of the neighborhood developer; this inspired the development of the neighborhood. A working millhouse with a working water wheel at the main entrance to the community.

The neighborhood has, thus far, sold five homes. This is the ground floor!!!



Wednesday, April 13, 2011 Edited:Update 2

What a week (past 5 days. I know it's only Wed.).

I found out last night, after reading one blog and doing some research online that the MPI (is that right? It's like PMI for FHA loans) is going up in 3 days,on the 18th, a quarter a percent (.25%). From everything I read that makes a 4.75% loan more like a 5.125% loan. BIG difference in price. We estimated everything at 5% interest, just in case. But, this put it's about $43 a month over that estimate. And the 5% estimate was our last "affordable" estimate. So now, I'm freaking out. FREAKING OUT!! I don't want to get in over our heads. Hopefully by next Friday, I will know one way or the other what's going on. =/

There is also some mumblings of a hike in interest rates soon. None of this is sitting well with me at all, as you can imagine. If we get turned down, I'll know why.

My Grandfather is doing ok. He is glad to be home. =) I should find out by Friday what, if any, treatment he has chose to get for his lung cancer. I can't imagine it will be much. He knows his Alzheimer's is already progressing more quickly than we anticipated. =(

My husband's grandfather is now in the hospital, congestive heart failure. It was very touch and go Sunday. He has made some small improvement since then. But we just don't know what's going to happen.

Our landlord seems impatient with us and wants an answer to us moving or not. *sigh* Remember, our lease was up Jan. 31. They are being kind to allow us a month to month right now with no contract while we wait.

I am ready for some good news. I really am. I want it to be this loan, and this house. I want to be able to afford it. I fear we will no longer be getting this loan. Some days, it seems like life is just baring down on me and I don't know how much longer I can stand it. But for now, I am trying to hold my ground. One day at a time, right?

In other news, I am taking the girls next week to get their flower girl dresses for my sister's wedding. =)

Life is stressful right now, but I am still here! I'm still hanging on.

Minaq2, thanks for asking how he was doing. I know this was a bit more than you asked, but I think maybe I just needed to get it out. *hugs*

UPDATE: We had to go by and sign the final change orders today. Our Rep said that if we got pre-approved chances are good we already have an FHA case # and are grandfathered in. =) So of course, we call our loan person and left a message, just to make sure. YAY! Some good news...or at least some hope for good news!

UPDATE 2: Our loan Rep was going to call our Loan officer to make sure we had a case number, and if we don't, they are going to get us one so we can be grandfathered in! =) So our 4.75% interest rate is what it is. =D SUPER HAPPY!!! And if it goes up a quarter point, we're still good. Man, I can't tell you the relief this has brought me! =D =D =D

Monday, April 11, 2011

Psst....wanna figure out your mortgage payment?

I have 2 incredible sites that get it almost perfect!!

First, if you are putting down less than 20%, you're going to need to figure out your PMI. For that go here:

Then go to:

You plug in the total loan amount, the amount down, the interest rate, taxes (you can find out what they are in your area online, and you insurance.

When it comes up with the total, subtract the $80 PMI and add the one you go from the first website. VIOLA! You'll be darn close to your payment!! (especially if you've called your insurance company and have a figure for that!)

Taxes: We add our county and city taxes together and know it 1.08 per $100 (we also confirmed with our Ryan Rep who can look it up).

Take the value of the loan/total amount before down payment divide by 100 then multiply by the taxes.

example: 205,000 / 100 * 1.08 = 2214 in taxes a year. (just picked a number)

Happy Calculating!!!!

Executive Decision Made

I did it. We have a change order for the antique white/Maple stained white cabinets and...STAINLESS STEEL!!!

Just thought I'd let you guys know!! ;)

Looking to build in the Charlotte, NC area?

The Mills at Rocky River has dropped their prices!!

The Venice, which offers 2224-2834 sq ft starts in the 140's. The Rome, over 3000 sq ft, starts in the upper 160's now! The model home out there, The Verona, starts in the 180's now!

Some great deals to be had!! Just thought I'd throw that out there! Here are the links to all the different homes they are offering and the starting price points.



The neighborhood is set to have pool and the club house is HUGE!! To include a kitchen, work out rooms, and locker rooms! They hope to have the pool open by Summer 2012.

They are just minutes from I485, in Cabarrus County, which offers lower taxes and better schools! (two of the schools, an elementary and a middle school, are IN the neighborhood!)

The neighborhood itself sits far back off the main road. As it develops, they are planning on putting shops in up by the main road, and from my understanding, a grocery store as well. Schools and shopping at arms reach! And when you add being so close to Charlotte, what else could you ask for.

I'm just excited. And I like the share good things. This seems like a good thing to me.

Sunday, April 10, 2011


We did a major last minute change tonight. We changed our cabinets to match our kitchen table. We are going with the final upgrade of the antique white cabinets with the St. Cecelia Granite!

It will look something like these:

Here is where I need your help. I want to keep our black appliances for the following reasons:

1. to compliment the black and white fireplace we have
2. I think the stark white appliances against the antique white ones is a bit too white. See example below:


He thinks the white is the better way to go. Especially since we get the microwave above the stove. And our fridge is white, so it wouldn't matter.

We will eventually upgrade to stainless, but we don't want that in our mortgage payment. You know? So for now...which do we get?

What do you guys think? I need answers by 3 pm tomorrow!!!! HELP US!! lol sink overlooks my den and white and black fireplace....

Model Homes

My sister, mom, the kids and I all went around the area yesterday looking at different builder model homes. We had to go by the model in our neighborhood and tell our Rep we were pre-approved. That led to an afternoon of curiosity and fun. We decided to check out other model homes. lol

I don't like Lennar at all!!! They're prices are all inclusive, including upgrades, but I still was not impressed. Orleans was nice, and impressed me the most. But the model home of course was SUPER huge!!

In the end, I left that afternoon feeling even more in love with the house we chose from Ryan. =) I am glad we chose Ryan. I'm glad we chose the Milan! I didn't go set out to compare at all. We just went out for a bit of fun. But at the end of the afternoon, I realized I was totally in love with our soon-to-home (God willing).

I did feel bad for the Reps at these models. There was me, my 3 kids, my sister, her two kids, and my mom. So 3 adults, 5 kids. I can only imagine the terror on their faces when saw us all approaching! lol

Friday, April 8, 2011

Guardian meeting and pricing

We had our meeting with Guardian this morning. It took about 2 hours (mainly because my hubby is more indecisive than I can be. lol).

We were told that we have 3 meetings with Guardian (you can do more).

Meeting 1: Sit down with your Guard. Rep and discuss what you want for the house

Meeting 2: Meet at the construction site to physically mark where you want your
picks to be.

Meeting 3: After construction to show you how to do everything.

I know some bloggers added an additional meeting after the first one. They talked options the first time, and then decided and signed papers the second time.

Price List for things are:

Digital Pre-wire Den $440
Digital Pre-wire bedroom $330
- You only want these if you are mounting your tv to the wall


Surround sound pre-wire $565
This is where they pre-wire and YOU set up what you have

Surround sound Silver $1350 they provide sub-woofer
$1100 you provide sub-woofer
*gives you 5 classic in-ceiling or in-wall surround sound speakers

Surround sound Gold $2560 them sub-woofer
$1850 you sub-woofer
*gives you 5 Deluxe in-ceiling (you can aim them) or in-wall surround sound speakers

There is third option at $3280 them and $2160 you, but it's more for basement theaters.

The speakers they use are from Klipsch. They now provide the speaker systems for 1 out of ever 2 movie theaters. Good stuff.


2 room (in ceiling) speakers $1995
Pre-wire only $710

4 room (in ceiling) speakers $3425
Pre-wire only $1425

you can sub and outdoor speaker for a room

Outdoor speaker $145

If you have surround sound, it will hook up through the surround sound.


It is installed for for free. If you ask, you can get up to 6 months free monitoring.

You must sign a 36 month monitoring contract, for $40 a month to $60 a month, depending on coverage.

You can have it installed for about $1450 with NO contract for service. You can decide when to activate it and for how long. However this price is higher than the price of paying for the service over the 36 month period (@ $40 a month).

Our Guardian rep was AWESOME!! Very laid back, not pushy at all, and best of all, PATIENT WITH US!! lol (how do you think I got all these prices, lol) Loved him!

In the end we went with Data ports ($250 for 2)for each tv (allows internet access through the tv ex. ordering netflix), and with the $1100 surround sound with 3 all speakers and two ceiling speakers (we have our own sub-woofer)

We were undecided about the extra monthly expense of the alarm system. So we drew up and signed two contracts. One with it, one without it. We told him we would call him Monday with our answer. =) Either way, it doesn't change the amount of the change order we are giving our Ryan Rep.

SO....we're done!! Next steps: Approval and pre-construction! (God willing)




Thursday, April 7, 2011


We have a pre-approval letter!

It's for the first amount of the home, before the upgrades, so we're working on getting that part fixed.

We have to get them our bank statements, w2's, and copy of our drivers licenses. We also have to write a letter explaining our credit and bankruptcy. We have loan rep from somewhere who is going to help us that.

I know it's not an approval. Not yet anyway. =)

I went out to the property tonight with my kids and parked the van on it. I got and prayed over it. My eldest daughter took that opportunity to roll all 4 windows in the van down and blast worship music. I love her.

I stood in the middle of it and told the Lord the desire of my heart. But I also know, and said, no matter what, I will continue to love HIM no matter what. We then came home, and my hubby walked through the door with the pre-approval letter. They faxed it to him.

We are going to get it all together tomorrow and send it in tomorrow. Our appt. with Guardian is at 10. They can't submit it to underwriting until the 15th. So we should know soon. I'm still praying.

On another front, some of you have started following my other blog, my personal one. My grandfather (who has been a father figure to me since my dad died when I was 11) has Alzheimer's. We found today he also has lung cancer. At least a stage 2. He sees the oncologist tomorrow. He as already said he will not get surgery. He probably won't opt for the Chemo either. He's already dying of one disease. Why fight the other one when you already have a death sentence.

He lives less than 2 minutes from me right now. My heart grieves over this. I love him so much. As sad and cruel as this may sound, I just pray he goes peacefully in his sleep when the time comes.

So life is full of up and downs right now. A pre-approval is a start. Now we just hope underwriting likes what they see and approves us officially. Hopefully by the beginning of the week after next, we'll know (the 15th is next Friday. So I'm thinking maybe Wed. the week following we might now....maybe).

So.... for now, my little blip is still beeping!!!

_______/\_____/\_____/\______beep beep beep. =)

Keep us in your prayers please. To have come this far..... Please. Thank you.

___/\____/\_______/\ Beep....beep....

LOL That's my heartline, like a hosptial....barely beeping, but still beeping none the less!! I'm on life support! lol At least it feels this way. I'm getting weary in this journey of yes, no, maybe.

We heard from bank 4.


They want stuff We have a list. I'm not sure what's all on it yet. I can assume things like bank statements, taxes, and such. They emailed it to my hubby, so I'll know it all tonight. I do know they want a letter explaining our b/k and credit. YIKES!

How do you say, "oops! We totally screwed up young. The economy crashed. It caught up to us. Now we learned and only got the two credit cards we have to 1. establish credit to get a home and 2. for emergancies only. We no longer purchase ANYTHING we don't need or have the cash for. PERIOD!"

Any suggestions out there? HELP!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Guardian question

Ok, so we meet with Guardian in a few days, and then everything will be done and we just wait.

I know that we will discuss the alarm system thing (not happening), all the pre-wire stuff, extra outlets, ect. Is there anything else we should know or expect? Do they discuss any lighting stuff?

I looked at the lighting in the model today and it was fine. I don't think any of it was upgraded because the dining room light was candle-like. Does that make sense? Anyway, if that is the one light I don't like, I can upgrade it later in life. You know?

I know that the extra lights we wanted come with the house, so I'm good there.

I'm going to take some of the advice I learned here and put a few extra outlets in (garage for one and then one of our master closets. Maybe an extra on the island too).

Can anyone tell me the pro's of having them pre-wire for digital? Is it worth the money?

Ok, I think I have rambled enough. Any info you could give me would be great. Thanks so much guys! Love ya!

oh no

I'm so indecisive.

Went the model today to look at the morning room and cabinet space and outlets in the gourmet island. While I was there I walked around back to see exactly how big our patio was going to be. WOW! Niced size!!! BUT>>>>

They had the HVAC unit back on there. AND, that outside wall is the one we plan on putting the fireplace. Grundle mumph. =/

The whole reason we put it there was so:

1. we could see tv no problem from any point in the kitchen and
2. when you walked in the home the first thing you saw down the all was the fireplace and pics on the mantle, NOT the tv.

Now I'm wondering if we should switch the wall the fire place is on since it will cut into our patio. Enough of the patio is going to go missing with the HVAC unit. I wonder if we can get the HVAC unit moved? If so, I wouldn't mind the fire place thing so much.... I think.

AGH!! I wish I could make up my mind!!!

new blogger and just ramblings

I'm getting ready to head over to the model to check out a few things. It's always bitter sweet. I'm ready for our financing to come through.

Plus, I had wanted to take my mom to see it and my sister did it instead. Without me. I wanted to be with her the first time she saw what we were building. I'll never get that now. And it bothers me and makes me sad. I never said a word to my sister about it. She can't undo it. It is what it is. Why upset her, or possibly start an argument. But I do feel like she robbed me of an experience that was mine to have. Not hers. It bothers me more than it probably should. I need to figure out how to let this go. Like I said, I can't change it. *sigh*

I am excited though!! We have a new blogger AND...she's in my area!!! I'm so excited! I have someone in my area!! lol

That is her link! Please welcome Minaq2 to our Ryan Homes blogging community! =) I love keeping up with everyone and seeing everyone's progress! =)

Anyway, it's almost 11. I need to get my tail in gear if I'm going to get back in time to feed "baby bean" and put her down for her nap. TTYL

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Morning room ? for my blogging family

Do you guys have a light in your morning rooms? What does it look like?

Friday, April 1, 2011

Staying Organized thru the Process

I have a 3 ring binder I am using to say organized. I highly recommend this! I put a copy of the plans that Ryan gives you in the outer sleeve with the picture of the house and name showing.

Inside I have tabs for different things.

Some of things inside are:

Tabs for Guardian
RiteRug (flooring place)
Stuff to buy after purchase of the house,
Financials (records of every check, every expense, print outs of pricing)
A section of general info (copy of blue prints, lots, neighborhood
info, Ryan info they give you)
PM meeting info
Rep communications (emails from my Rep answering questions or about home)

I have several copies of blue prints. One is plain and is in the general info section. One is in the after purchase section and has the placements of furntiure. The other is in the guardian section for electrical work. I got them from the Ryan website. I also printed out pictures of all of our choices for flooring and colors and have those in there as well. I also have notebook paper for notes.

I also have copies of everything we've signed and done with our Rep. Every change order, ect.

This notebook comes with me to every meeting!! No matter what. I never lose a thing a this way, and have good records of everything! When this all done, I hope to have the pictures I have taken through the building process in there too. I think when all is said and done, it will be neat to have (on top of keeping good records).

So this was just a thought I'd pass along. I only have a 1/2" binder right now, but it looks like I will need to go a 1" binder. So for all of you out there who are considering building or just in the beginning of this process, give it a thought!