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Having a house built

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    I like the curtains under the sinks. Mine is waiting for a false back (time frame for that Aliya?). And I really like how the pull-out cutting board is behind a false drawer front.

    And it looks like the step up to the regular size dishwasher is typical.
    T7-8 since Feb 2005


      sjean, I predict you will have your false back by thanksgiving Think the blueprints for the house will be ready by the end of the week. Starting to get excited. I have loved looking at the pictures of all your homes. Lot of useful info on this forum.
      A fanatic is one who can't change his mind and won't change the subject. ~Winston Churchill


        i built my house a little over 5 years ago and at the time i was the bookkeeper for the contractor, so he really did a lot of research to try to find things that worked.

        just a few things he did....

        i too have the pull out shelves in my kitchen. they make it so much easier. i wanted the top to bottom revolving cabinets for the upper ones but they were way too pricey so i keep items there that i dont often need.

        we installed a maytag gemini range. it is not a hc accessible unit but it works well for me. it has two ovens, one is a normal oven size, but it has a small oven on is the size of the drawer on a normal oven but at the top instead of down on the floor. this works well for me for everyday cooking and if we cook something like a turkey or ham the guys put it in the large oven on the bottom. you can see it here....

        we used special handicap seals for all of the doorways which makes it much easier to get in and out of the house. and, he put in wheelchair hinges on the entrance doors which are offset and get the door out of the way.

        we also put in 40" doors throughout the house which is sooooooo much better than normal doors.

        our house has a normal foundation but no stairs. the contractor just put in a gentle slope for the sidewalk to follow that drains away from the house so there are no water issues. no one would ever look at this house and realize it is handicapped accessible. the way it is done looks stylish and "normal".

        we also put in french doors with the hc seals as sliders would not support the weight of my motorized chair.

        our deck has ramps going off of each side for easy access to all parts of the yard.

        the one major bit of advice i would offer is for you to be onsight with every advance so that they can let you try out the area before it is actually built. for example, our plans were supposed to be hc plans, but when they framed up the bathroom and took me in, we found out that the turning radius was not sufficient. also, the layout did not allow for a transfer from chair to the toilet. so by having me onsight, he could take a chalk and draw in all of the fixtures and let me try it out before anything was installed or built. this was invaluable in the construction. we spent one entire day drawing out the bathroom and then scrubbing it out and starting over to make it easily accessible.

        the same thing happened in the kitchen. the layout just did not flow. for example, the way the plans were drawn, when i got something out of the fridge, i had no where to put it down while i closed the fridge and turned. so we spent another entire day with him drawing in different lay outs and letting me try them. when they didnt work, he just scrubbed out the chalk and we tried again.

        our ceiling fans have switches on the wall along with the light switches. there is a slider along the side of the switch that allows me to control the fan speed. i had never seen those but they are wonderful.

        also, instead of door knobs, we have levers. that way i can open the door with my fist and not have to try to grip a knob and turn it. we found these at lowes and they were no more expensive than regular knobs. they even come in 3 or 4 finishes.

        the previous advice about the garage is good. our garage had to be enlarged after it was framed up in order to accomodate my big vehicle.

        once our subfloor was down, the contractor brought me in and we tried different turns and whatever to make sure all was well before any further building. this cut down on a lot of waste of materials and labor for having to redo things that didnt work.

        our floor plan is open with a lot of archways. our only real doors are on bathrooms and bedrooms. everything else is wide archways.

        i am sure there are a lot of other things, but these are the ones that popped into my mind. after 5 years, all of these things just seem routine. i dont think anyone who walked into my house would even realize it was hc accessible if they didnt see the kitchen sink open underneath and also my vanity in the master bath. that is they only obvious accomodation in the house.

        i hope you will enjoy the building process and that your end result will be a home that you will enjoy for years to come.


          Thanks spinky88, I have never seen that type of range before wish I had one now I hate heating the large oven when I just want to make cookies, etc. I really want a wall oven and a range top I can get under pretty sure we will have enough counter space to accomadate all the appliances. We are only having doors on the bedrooms and baths oh and the laundry room but on our bedroom, bath and the laundry room we had planned on pocket doors.

          Is your garage level with your house? We had planned on raising the garage a few blocks (blocks are expensive though so we will see) so there wouldn't be a really steep ramp from the garage to the house. Our land is fairly level but the man that will dig the foundation said we could slope the land like your talking about that way its just a gentle incline from the drive to the front door.

          I have never heard of the seals for the doorways guess I should research that. I have already thought of remotes or the light switch type fan control we already have one of those in this house and they are nice.

          you were lucky to be working for a contractor that did so much research when we had this house built the builder didn't know much about wheelchair access but he did work with us to a degree. The cabinet shop that supplied our cabinets are the ones that told me about the higher kick plate under the lower cabinets I didn't have a clue as to those being available. He is also the one that told me about having the sink open but I want a false back on the next one I don't like looking at the pipes. In our bathroom we just have a pedestal sink this new home I want a vanity so I can have room to sit stuff. I like the looks of pedestal sinks but there is no place for me to sit my things which I hate.

          Do you have a picture of the front of your house so I could see how yours was sloped?

          We thought our blueprints would be finished this week but now the lady is saying early Monday.
          A fanatic is one who can't change his mind and won't change the subject. ~Winston Churchill


            ok, i got my son to take some pictures, but i am lousy at getting pics onto the forum. i hope this works!!!

            also, i wanted to tell you that we considered pocket doors too, but the contractor said they would add considerable cost due to the special construction; in that the doors have to slide into the wall. he said this makes the wiring more tedious as they have to accomodate the pocket. you may want to check and see if this will be true for you so that you may budget accordingly if that is indeed accurate.

            i hope the pics help...if they actually come through! lol


              Thanks for the pictures and nice landscaping. Hope we can get our home as accessible as the front of yours. As for the pocket doors my husband is going to do our electrical work so that should be okay as far as construction will have to check with the framer I guess.
              A fanatic is one who can't change his mind and won't change the subject. ~Winston Churchill


                I love your house & landscaping. We have all oopen space too with wide archways. No more crashing into walls! We went to a smaller house because the kids are on their own (i just moved back/temp) because it is less to keep up and clean. The blocks in under the garage are better you don't evenneed a ramp. I have a cememt circle graduated. A ramp takes up a lot of space. Ib will try to send some pics the contractor took.


                  your house and garage seem to be built a lot like ours. i like that garage door! you need to post a pic of your house from the front so we can see!!!

                  on the inside of our garage, the floor is the same height as the floor inside. i can just roll right into the house from the garage with no need for a ramp.

                  i hope you will enjoy your new house. i understand what you mean about downsizing...the less to clean the better!

                  Aliya, i had one more thought for you since you mentioned space in the bathroom. my contractor built a vanity with the roll under sink, but he put drawers down the side as well. i didnt want all of my make up and stuff out on the counter, so he put a shallow built in cabinet in the wall just above the side of the vanity. it is about 4" or so deep and recessed into the wall. it is perfect to hold prescriptions and my make up. the door matches the doors to the cabinet over the toilet and also the closed vanity at my husband's sink. being so shallow, it fit into the wall between the studs.


                    I like the garage doors also and they are the kind we want we are going with two seperate garage doors if possible.

                    Good idea with the cabinet spinky88. So guess its similar to how medicine cabinets are recessed. All I know I do want a vanity this time no more pedestal sink.
                    A fanatic is one who can't change his mind and won't change the subject. ~Winston Churchill


                      Originally posted by spinky88
                      i got my son to take some pictures, but i am lousy at getting pics onto the forum. i hope this works!!!
                      What a lovely yard you have!



                        thank you. the guys have worked hard, and i sure do enjoy sitting out looking at it.