Friday, June 24, 2011

Moving forward...

We had our new project manager (for lack of a better word?  he isn't the project manager, but I guess he's the new guy for our development) come and measure our tub today.  YAY!  He's going to order the tub and the tile and hopefully we'll have a better idea where we stand with the tub being fixed.  Thank goodness!

I guess I'll hear from him next week about the remainder of the 30 day fixes we need taken care of - it has been raining a lot and they are all outside things that need fixing.  He is also supposed to bring us the touch up paint that we've been asking our old PM for since OCTOBER.  I hope so!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Would you build with Ryan Homes/NVR again?

Answer below in the comments section!  Why or why not?

For us, I'm not sure.  The jury is still out. 

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Some fixes.

Like I said in one of my last posts, Ryan finally was able to coordinate the concrete contractor to come and complete the repairs of our sidewalk and walkways, so that is all set.  Whew.

I will be emailing the person who is taking things over for us this week with our list of things that still need to be taken care of.   I'm very grateful to say that the service department showed up on Friday afternoon to fix our pillars and my husband watched how they were repaired and is confident that he can do it in the future.  (Although it STILL bothers me that they would even need repairing in the first couple of years...but whatev, I guess.)

We also were able to pick out our bathroom tile this weekend.  I have no idea what we picked, LOL.  I honestly am NOT that great at things like that.  I know what I like and don't like, but putting things together???  I have NO idea.  My husband knew what he wanted, so I just went with it.  A darker colored tile with a little glass/tile mosaic accent.  It was hard because we weren't given any parameters of what we could or couldn't choose - and neither was the person at the selection center.  So here's hoping we don't have to go back and re-pick anything.

I am still disappointed to report that I never heard from the division manager regarding my email. 

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Landscaping Pictures





Our awesome looking grass...

Love my little rock wall!

It seems that we're moving in the right direction.

But I'm not going to get my hopes up.  Yet. 

It looks like a strongly worded email worked?  I sent the email (see the post below) to the District Manager of Ryan Homes on Monday at 11am.  I still have not heard 1 single word from him.  I did, however, finally get phone calls from another guy from Ryan Homes who will be overseeing the rest of the work on our house and make sure things get finished up and FINALLY got a phone call from the person from the selection center.  It just took over a week AND this new guy telling her to call us to get that to happen. For reals???? 

I'm not gonna lie, I'm NOT happy that I still haven't heard from the District Manager.  What kind of customer service is that?  At the very least reply to my email to let me know you got it, return my phone calls, ACKNOWLEDGE that I'm contacting you!  I totally get that he's a busy guy - wouldn't want his job!  However, that's his job.  And my husband and I are paying a lot of money for a house that isn't the way its supposed to be.   I'm curious what got the ball email or the fact that I posted it on this blog. 

We'll be going to pick out the tile on Saturday, I hope.  That was basically the only option we were given so we're trying to squeeze it in among the million and ten other things we have going on that day.  It's going to take 6ish weeks for the tile to come in and once that happens they have to take out the old tub, put the new one in, redo the plumbing, then tile, then hook up shower head, etc.  It won't be a quick process.  Which is part of why I'm so irritated about everything up until this point taking so long.  I knew it wouldn't be a quick fix. 

I'm very appreciative and thankful for the new person, Steve, who will be working on things with us.  He assured me that he's going to try to get all of our outside issues taken care of as quickly as possible.  We did get our walkway repaired yesterday.  Of course it was right in the middle of our landscaping being installed.  It was fine, both the concrete guys and landscapers were easy going and willing to work around each other.  It just stinks because our landscapers have to come back today to finish the job because they couldn't finish the areas around where the sidewalk was repaired.  Which was exactly what I was trying to avoid from the very beginning when I told people MONTHS ago that we had landscaping scheduled.  Oh well, like I said, our landscapers are very flexible and easy to work with and willing to come back today.  For those in the Western NY area, we used Groundbreakers Landscaping.  They've been fantastic and VERY resonably priced.  I hope to take after pictures tonight and will post them soon.  They did a beautiful job and really worked with me to give me exactly what I wanted.  They have a website if you want to check them out.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Apparently patience, being respectful, and kindness get you NOWHERE.

No wonder people so often resort to acting like a-holes.

Let me tell you...the last 6-8 weeks have been such a nightmare!  I am out of patience and I'm unleashing the floodgates.  Bear with me.  Where shall I start?

I think I'll start with saying that anyone who is currently building their house or has just moved in - do NOT fill out your customer satisfaction survey until every single thing in your home is done and it is done to your satisfaction.  I'm at the point where I feel like once they got their coveted 10's from us, they stopped trying to make sure we were happy.  (Did that happen to anyone else?  All we heard from our Sales rep and PM when we would thank them for something was to make sure we gave them all 10's on the survey.)

Next...the tub in the master bath.  Well, we've finally come to the agreement that Ryan Homes will replace it.  But not until we were told by the Service Manager that no, they'd just repair them.  Excuse me, but we UPGRADED that tub and in being in the house for less than 8 months we've had no less than 8 cracks appear in that tub.  Repair 1 or 2?  Ok.  Repair 8????  I don't think so.  There is a freaking problem with the tub, why on earth do I have to go above this guys head to the Division Manager in Buffalo?  And even then, when I spoke with the Division Manager, he tells me that the tub can be fixed, but if we want them to, they'll replace the tub and install a tile surround (because the 1 piece unit cannot fit into the bathroom) and to let them know what they want us to do.  Um, seriously?!  I've escalated this issue to YOU because we want the tub replaced.  Then, the tub he sends me to review as a replacement is not the right kind of tub for our bathroom - I email him to let him know this and I also asked him about the possibility of upgrading the tub to a whirlpool tub because when we were originally told the tub should be replaced (by a Ryan Home Employee who shall remain nameless...) we were told that it should be replaced by a whirlpool tub with a tile surround.  To get the the whirlpool tub, we have to pay for it.  And it took over 2 weeks for me to get that information, several unreturned phone calls, and a conversation with my PM!!   We passed on paying extra for the whirlpool tub (we have too many other projects going on right now) and I let the district manager know immediately.  He told me that the woman from the Selection Center would be in touch to pick out the tile - and guess who I STILL haven't heard from?  It has been a week!  I even emailed him on Thursday to let him know I hadn't heard from the woman and maybe I should contact her myself, he said no and copied her on the email...still NOTHING.  Are you freaking kidding?  How hard is this?  And it's supposed to take 6 weeks for the tile to come in once we pick it, so I'd like to get it picked ASAP.  

Here's the email I sent to him yesterday - I was so ticked off when I wrote this!  I emailed him over 24 hours ago and haven't even gotten a response. 


Just wanted to let you know that we still haven’t heard from XXXX in regards to coming in and picking out the tile selections. My husband will be out of the country next week so we will be unable to do any tile selections Sunday 6/19-Sunday 6/26 and I don’t want to push this out any further than we have to.

My husband and I are getting to the point where we’re frustrated and losing patience. We are still waiting on our 30 day inspection issues to be fixed such as pillars being painted, our front door being painted, the decorative piece over the garage actually being secured and properly fit (it looks horrible). Our front walkway and sidewalk also need to be replaced and that hasn’t happened either. I completely understand that some things have been backlogged due to the weather issues, but I have also made it known that we had landscaping scheduled for June – and I already pushed it back because the sidewalk wasn’t done. You can imagine my frustration when the house across the street from me had their sidewalk and driveway fixed on Thursday, when their house was built after ours! And when we went to ask XXXXX if we were next, they said we were not on their schedule. I don’t want to go forward with my landscaping to have it messed up when the sidewalk is installed.

I’m also getting to the point where I’m feeling disappointment in some things. We paid $250,000+ for an “estate” home and currently I don’t feel like I live in an estate home. Maybe I’ll feel better once all of the necessary fixes and repairs are made. We have to call the service center because the bases of our front porch pillars are falling apart. Our front porch was an expensive upgrade and for a $250,000 house, those pillar bases shouldn’t be falling apart after 8 months. I see houses built after ours getting their 30 day inspection fixes taken care of while we are still waiting on ours (and our 10 month is due in August!). I’ve found out from new Ryan home builders (ones who have XXXX as their sales rep – he told them) that apparently there are only in-ground pools allowed in XXXXX Estates. My husband and I were never informed of that by our sales rep, XXXXX. I think that’s an important piece of information! Also, I see houses going up now that have garage doors with windows. I had no idea that you could upgrade the garage door because we were never told we could upgrade the garage door.

I apologize for this long email, but like I said, my husband and I are both getting to the point where we are getting fed up. We are beginning to feel like being flexible, nice, and patient is getting us nothing but a waiting game. We just want our house to be finished so it can really start feeling like a home to us.

So, crazy right??  We have been in our house since the middle of October and we're still waiting for our 30 day inspection items to be finished!  How freaking ridiculous, insane, and UNACCEPTABLE is that???  Like I've read on other blogs, our grass is coming in like crap.  We're absolutely going to have to reseed ourselves.  You're supposed to hydroseed within 24 hours after grading the lawn - it was DAYS. Our PM told us he would seal our concrete driveway for us - that never happened.  We've been BEGGING for the ceiling paint and accent paint so we can do touch ups for months.  Nothing. 

I can't even begin to tell you how furious I am over our sidewalk situation.  The sidewalk and our walkway sank over the winter and needs to be replaced.  I understand, no problem.  I was told at the end of April - APRIL that it would be in a few weeks.  It is now JUNE 14th and I have nothing.  And I'm having my landscaping installed tomorrow - and I've already pushed it back a week and a half for the sidewalk.  This is NOT right.  I've told our PM a million and ten times that we wanted this done before our landscaping and he assured me that it would be.  Imagine my shock when last Thursday the concrete people were at the house across the street from me tearing out their walkway and part of their driveway and then they got their repairs done (and upgraded to the wider sidewalk!!) on Friday!!  They moved into their house a MONTH after ours - their house started almost a month after ours.  What the heck???  We asked the concrete people if we were next and nope.  Not even on the schedule.  I look out the window this morning...and guess who is getting landscaping?!  Spitting.NAILS.furious. 

And that's all just the icing on the cake people!  I was lucky enough to find out the last week in April that one of the people doing the work in our home - AFTER WE WERE LIVING THERE is a Level 3, violent, SEX OFFENDER!!  Ryan Homes and NVR is not screening these people before they come into our home.  I understand if they build the house before we live there, but AFTER?  This man was in our house when myself and my 2 young children were home.  He has been in my neighbors homes when they've been alone with their young children.  How did I find this out, you ask?  Well, my husband and I wanted to put up a wall and french doors in our formal living room to turn it into another office.  This man had been at our house doing things, we liked him, he was friendly and did good work and gave us a good price, so we hired him.  Clearly that was the biggest mistake of our lives!  The day arrived for him to show up and nothing.  Couldn't get ahold of him, didn't show up, nothing.  Finally got ahold of him - AFTER I did a Google search where he promptly came up on the NY Sex Offender Registry.  FABULOUS.  Not only had he already been in our house - but we'd given him $800 to order the door for the project.  (Note: LESSON LEARNED!!!!)  So we were stuck.  We've spent the last 6 weeks with one excuse after another after another - horrible communiation and mostly through text messages if we were lucky.  We couldn't just fire him or else we were out $800.  Long story short, we finally got the door last week.  He was supposed to show Monday and didn't, had another excuse and we fired him.  YAY!  I feel like a weight has been lifted.  He still has $200 of materials and he "said" he'd drop them off.  Doubtful.  If he doesn't get them to us by next week, we'll call the police and take him to small claims.  I'm not worried and we're currently searching for a new contractor. 

My main issue though - yes, I need to do due dilligence any time I hire a contractor for my home.  However, so does Ryan and NVR if they're sending people into my home after I already live there!!!  I should get a say whether or not a LEVEL 3 (meaning high risk of repeat offense), violent, sex offender comes into my home!  And I'm willing to bet a lot of other homeowners - especially women with young children would feel the same way!

Overall, do I still love my house and where we live?  Yes, I do.  And I do feel like the structure of my house is good.  But I feel like the ball is being dropped and we're being ignored left and right.  I'm DONE!  I'm sick of it!  Apparently the polite and patient squeaky wheel gets NOTHING.  

Stay tuned...I have a very interesting story about some of my poor neighbors and the issues they are dealing with in their home!