My husband Mike and I were on the hunt — which I dubbed “Operation ReloSouth” — for the perfect location to build our retirement home. We found it — a no-snow, lower cost, more relaxed area of the country near water — in Hampton Lake SC. And this is our story.
I thought my husband Mike and I were looking at model homes so that “someday” we would build our retirement home in beautiful Hampton Lake, S.C. I thought I could “relax” once we decided that “someday” David Weekley Homes would build us our Pawley.
But Mike kept wanting to visit Hampton Lake. Every visit Mike
dragged me encouraged me to walk through the Weekley homes under construction”just to be sure” we picked the right model. He’d pull out his phone and snap photos of whatever home was being built. He’d measure doorways, closets and other stuff, while I walked around and admired the countertops and furniture. After all, it wasn’t like I needed to pay close attention to the house itself; it wasn’t ours.
Every visit to Hampton Lake we’d talk with Nancy Cantor, our sales consultant whom we now call friend, about any incentives or changes in the Weekley build offers. I should point out that Nancy is the third salesperson with whom we’ve discussed building a Weekley home. (I dare say that Mike and I are probably known as “the couple who took years to sign on the dotted line.” I wonder if Nancy got a signing bonus for finally getting us to commit?!) After we finished exploring the Weekley homes under construction and talking with Nancy, we’d walk our lot, talking about someday putting in a dock, which we knew had to be built before our home could be built since the lot is narrow and the heavy equipment wouldn’t “fit” after the house was built. I teased Mike that “someday,” after we put in the dock, we could come visit and sit on lawn chairs admiring our own lake view even though we wouldn’t have a house built yet!
Typically, buyers who haven’t signed a contract for Weekley to build them a house don’t get to visit the Weekley Design Center. We did. Multiple times. That’s when we met Tressa, design manager. I liked her right away, maybe because her taste and my taste are so similar. Or perhaps she just wants me to think that! She’s so Southern, I’m not sure!
But pay attention here! The visit that changed everything in my world occurred October 20, 2015. Weekley was building a new model, one we’d never seen! The model, The Blue Point, is a riff on the Pawley, only a bit bigger and better for folks like us in some ways. Mike was intrigued. I was too. “Knowing” that our build was years away, I mostly played Scrabble on my phone, while Mike spent, I kid you not, hours roaming the construction sight, measuring, staring into space, measuring and staring some more.
That night we ate dinner with the David Weekley Blue Point plans scattered all over the table. We looked hard at the numbers (okay, Mike looked hard at the numbers while I looked at the kitchen and bathroom layouts) and then we returned to the build-in-process to walk through the house again. And again. And the next day we pored over the design drawings again. And again. Hint: Examine everything, more than twice, before making a major life-altering decision.
On October 26, 2015, the day after our 36th wedding anniversary, Mike and I signed a contract with Weekley. They would build us a David Weekley Blue Point home. On our lot. Seriously. With that major decision made, I asked Mike if we could go hang out at the pool.
Mike had other ideas.
Up Next: Operation ReloSouth: Building a Dock in Hampton Lake SC