Monday, May 20, 2013

We are closed

I never really thought that the day we closed would be so anti-climactic. But it was. Courtney and I met that night to delve into our business plan for the bank to look at and we sat there just staring at each other. Not high fives, smiles of happiness, or even sighs of relief, just an overwhelming sense of "what's next?" It was a little sad to not be more excited to tell you the truth. What has brought us here?

We had the contractor drama earlier this year and had to switch contractors due to the initial one being way too shady and not following through on things promised. We felt good with the decision we made and went forward with our plans. We had numerous meetings crunching numbers, making decisions, and timelines. We felt good about our plan. It would be a lot of work, but one that we felt was reasonable and doable. All along we are waiting on final engineered plans. We had the first set that was about 500 square feet less in the main house and about 700 square feet less in the garage. We had informed our contractor of the changes, not specific numbers, but what we thought the changes would be.

Fast forward to Tuesday before we were first suppose to close that following Monday. Final engineered plans came in. We rushed the plans to our contractor so that we could apply for permits and get the ball rolling. Friday I get a call from my contractor and he told me to sit down. Immediately I knew this was bad news. Mind you we had 3 events Saturday and were up to our ears in flowers. Not good timing. Long story short, the new plans were larger than he had expected - like a lot more larger than he had estimated. So all our estimates, all our number crunching was pointless. We were in the range of 100,000 over budget.!?!? Seriously. It was like he punched me in the gut. Courtney freaked out, I mean on the verge of tears and we just stared at each other like how could this have happened.

My initial reaction was to drive to our architects house and give him a piece of my mind. Because if we had known this to begin with we have approached things very differently. Then I was mad that our contractor obviously did not reflect changes like I assumed he did. And then I was mad at us for not catching that. It was just not anywhere near what we had budgeted for. So, we pushed closing. Mostly because the appraisal was now incorrect and that had to get that changed. It took 2 weeks for the appraisal to come back and get all the necessary paper work signed.

Now, we are building only the main house and one ballroom with an apartment upstairs. We are approaching Wells Fargo for a business loan to finish the rest of the project. It all feels surreal, but also so ungodly frustrating. The whole process from the end of re-zoning on has been the hardest and most rocky road I have ever experienced. It has caused riffs in me and Sam, me and Court, Court and Mikhail, and any other combination you can think of. Everyone is on the line. And everyone is stressed to the max.

So, closing was just another day. We closed and we were back at it trying to put his ginormous puzzle that is The Bradford together. And as exciting as this should be, it is just at a point where it is stressful. Add Wedding season on top of it and I feel like we are barely hanging on. At least I am.

I will say that through it all, our focus has been on our brides and the weekends are a great getaway for us all. I don't even think about it when I am directing an event and I am happy to say that our events this year so far have rocked. Seriously, the design has been amazing, the clients so much fun, and the team we have is finally getting into a groove. C and D may just be the reason I am sane!

All this to say, we are starting, after a long, tiring process, that is still not over, we are starting to build, hopefully in the next week after we get all the permits. So, be excited for us! We will get there and I hope to be sharing some really great news that all the financing has worked out and that things are going smoothly. One can hope..right?

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