Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Construction Update

The main part of the construction is finally done. There’s one minor problem to fix, but it still renders my apartment unusable at the moment. (Sort of.)

I asked my contractor to retain my original tub because of an art deco detailing that matches the building’s exterior. I had him reglaze the surface so I could keep it. Doing that costs about $400 whereas a new tub would have been $200 + installation. To me, that’s about equivalent pricing with the added non-monetary benefit of pleasing my aesthetics.

Unfortunately, my contractor didn’t have a whole lot of experience with glazing. He hired an excellent glazer through his business partner who had used this glazer on other projects. The tub looked great when I first saw the work. It was awesome and I knew I had made the right decision.

However, my contractor told me on Tuesday that it would take 24 hours to set and then about 72 hours to cure, so I wouldn’t be able to shower in it till Friday. There were just a few more things to do like hang a towel bar and clean the work area and everything would be done. That was fine with me.

I get a call on Wednesday evening. The contractor has made a boo boo. He misunderstood the glazer. Nothing should have touched the tub for 72 hours at all. Because the contractor thought 24 hours was enough, he laid a canvas drop cloth in the tub so he could step in it and put in the plumbing fixtures. He had inadvertently marred the surface with the texture of the cloth. OOPS.

The glazer said he can’t fix this for at least a week because you can’t lay another layer of glaze down for 7 days after the first application. While I can use the tub over the weekend, it’s not perfect. So really, I’m not going to be able to move back in till June 21st after the reglazing is fully cured. YIKES. That makes it nearly 2 months since I started the project which should have taken 10-15 days.

At least I am only eating the cost of the extra labor for the surprise concrete under the waist-high tile backsplash on a spot of the walls that didn’t need tile. Yes, I went overbudget, but only by $300, less than 10% of the total estimate. And I saved a little money by buying less tile overall.

I will do an inspection over the weekend and hopefully cut a check for final payment next week. Then I will be able to move back in! YAY!

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