Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Catching Up

We are building a new house.  A new home.  I decided I want to keep a log or a journal or something to document the process.  Hmmmmm, what should I do?  A paper journal?  A photo book? 

A light bulb moment.  I have a blog.  And my last post?  "If not now, when?" in regard to moving to Coeur d'Alene.  This post will be to catch up with the process and document our new home on an ongoing basis.

We decided to move to Idaho many years ago.  The plan was to move after our daughter graduated from High School in 2008.  She decided to go to Western Washington University in Bellingham and we decide to wait.  

Our 2010 was not a good one for us.  We lost many loved ones and any thought of moving was out of the question.  In 2011, we put our home in Marysville on the market.  No luck, no sale.  In 2012, we tried again.  This time, it sold.  Yes, NOW is the time!

Our Marysville home:

In September of 2012, I received an offer to work in Hayden, ID.  I jumped on it.  I was thinking, "Maybe, just maybe, if I go to Idaho and work, the house will sell."  I started work in Hayden, Idaho on October 15 and stayed with my friend Susan in Spokane.  It took a little while, but sell, the house did.  I rented a house in November in Hayden and our Marysville home closed on December 3, 2012.

We moved over Thanksgiving and, wow, we have way too much stuff!  We had a huge moving van, a couple pickup loads and a pull trailer.  And there was more than one trip over the mountains.

We settled in and the search for a new home began.  As the search began, my job was gone.  It was a contract position and by the end of November, the budget was gone.  

Burning up the internet, we would find houses, drive by and decide if we should look inside.  But let me, back up...

We had made a couple trips to the Coeur d'Alene area before we moved.  We stayed with our friends, the Snyders   They drove me, us, or me and my sister around to see different areas.  

I really liked the Snyder's house.  Loved the style and how it was built.  I had found a house online I wanted to see and it was not far from Cheryl's.  Turns out the house I liked was one built by the son of the man who built Cheryl's.  But, the price was way more than I wanted.

We also went to the East side of Coeur d'Alene and found some awesome property.  This was 2011.  Forest Ridge at Mullan Trail.

The lot Scooter liked overlooked the freeway, and had an incredible view - 180 degree view of Lake Coeur d'Alene.  I loved the view, but the road noise from I-90 was awful.  AND the price was way out of our range - just for the lot!  This is another lot, but it was closer to Mullan Trail Road and I wasn't hot about that either.

And our house didn't sell.  We took the house off of the market and decided to wait.  We waited a year and put the house on the market again in June of 2012.  Luckier this time, we got an offer in November and accepted it.

Now we're back to 2013.  Again, burning up the internet.  It seemed Scooter was looking day and night.  Driving me crazy.  We drove by so many homes.  He found one in a development called Clark Heights in Hayden built by Aspen Homes.  We talked to a Realtor we knew and she got us inside the house.  It was a beauty.  Loved the house.  Loved the style, loved the work done by the builder.  The location was OK.  But, no room for a shop.  And Scooter has so many toys, we definitely need a shop.

Seemed to be the common theme we found.  We would find an OK house, but no room for a shop or we'd find a house with a shop and the house needed too much work or the price was way out of our range.  It was a very frustrating process.  We looked everywhere.  Well, everywhere but the "prairie."  There were some homes there that might have worked, but I won't live there.  Too windy.  I don't like the wind at all.

Back to square one.  I did not want to build.  Period.  But, it looked like I was going to lose the battle.  Turns out the homes we liked the best (including Cheryl's) were build by Aspen Homes.  

We took a few rides to the developments where Aspen homes were being or had been built.  We really liked one with a Rathdrum address, but it was too far away from the Coeur d'Alene area.  We also found one we liked at Fernan Lake.  But the lots were more than what we wanted to spend.  So, back to Forest Ridge at Mullan Trail.  We still really liked the location.  It is only only a couple miles to I-90 and about 5 miles total to Coeur d'Alene.

I knew the view lots would be out of our budget, but I really liked lot 37.  

I liked that no houses would be built to the East or North of our house.  I loved the "out in the woods" feeling, but really being close to town.  And it is also only about 10 minutes to one of the boat launches on Lake Coeur d'Alene, which Scooter really liked.

Next, we go to Aspen Homes.  We talked to the builder, Todd, and really liked what we heard.  Most of the anxiety I had about building were addressed and I was reassured that building really could be for us.  After telling him what we wanted, we looked at some floor plans and I got hooked.  We decided to buy lot 37 and the process begins!

On February 7, we gave the Realtor our earnest money for lot 37 on Shiras Road, in Coeur d'Alene, ID.  The next move:  Floor plan details.  

We decided on The Breckenridge floor plan. 

We then worked with Todd and the architect, Joe, to make this plan ours.  After a month of back and forth with Joe on what we wanted and needed, including enlarging the garage which negates the need for a separate garage.  Our floor plan:


On March 6, we signed a contract.  We also went to the title company and paid for the lot.  We now own 1.08 acres of land in Idaho!

This is it.  We are building a new home.  It will be flipped so the garage is on the left, but we're pretty excited about the whole process, even me.  

Now I'm caught up.  We're waiting for the permit process.  More when we break ground!




  1. This will be such an exciting journey for you. I am excited to follow along! I have never wanted to build either, but you never know someday it might happen. We tented in Coeur d' Alene about 10 years ago when we were on a two week vacation out west. It rained the whole time we were there and our tent leaked right on my head during the night. The next day we packed up and headed back towards Michigan. With the extra couple of days we gained by cutting Idaho short we were able to go through Yellowstone, so in a way I am thankful it rained.

  2. This is awesome, Debbie! It sounds like it was meant to be. Best of luck in your exciting new venture!

  3. Oh Debbie, I am so excited for you. We really must get together this spring or summer. You are not very far away now!

  4. This will be an incredible experience. You will learn and share a lot. It will be so interesting to see how it all goes. I love true to life stories of creating something big!

  5. Oh this is so exciting! Love the design of your home...your dream home!