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.
After we signed on the dotted line with David Weekley to build our Blue Point home, my husband Mike and I worked with Tressa at the David Weekley Design Center choosing fits and finishes and appliances for our new build.
It’s good to know that Weekley offers “levels” of finishes in its homes. If you select anything for your Weekley build other than Level 1 materials/finishes (the basic home, which is really nice), the cost of your build increases. If you delete something from the plan, the cost of the build decreases. As part of a recent promotion, the company gave us an “allowance” (aka cash) that we used toward upgrades from Level 1. That being said, during the actual selection process we didn’t have any idea what a particular upgrade would cost and the pricing process took some days to complete, which means we had to wait to find out if we could actually afford what we chose.
Tressa began by showing us samples in the expansive David Weekley Design Center and talking with us about our likes and dislikes. She quickly nailed our style preferences! The entire choice process — which took about 10 hours over 2 days — was about what we wanted, our “dream build.” As we worked our way room by room in the selection process, Tressa added the items to our summary sheet called an HTS, or Homeowner’s Transaction Summary. That document (plus the actual design floorplans), which we received via email after we returned to New Jersey, is where we first saw the cost of the upgrades we chose at the Design Center.
Weekley’s methodology was a challenge for Mike and me. During two previous home builds, Mike and I knew immediately what the cost of an add on/upgrade was and we could quickly and efficiently parse through the options on the spot. With Weekley it was a choose-and-wait selection process. And, just like in our other builds, we had to purchase only through approved vendors. Don’t even ask me how many different kitchen sink selections Tressa researched and priced for us before we chose one that satisfied our needs for quality, function, and price. That woman is a gem!
We are diligent people and we did our homework. Back in New Jersey, Mike and I spent weeks staring at the architect’s plans, making comments, measuring things out and figuring out if it would suit us as designed. When you are building a home take the time to look at the plans very carefully, over a span of weeks. You will pick up on different things every time your eye falls on the drawings. And you will save yourself time, money and aggravation during the actual build if you get it right on paper.
Mike has a very firm grasp on our cash. Dollars do not fly out of my husband’s fists easily. Soooo…after much back and forth, choosing and re-choosing, updating of the HTS and one architectural plan redraw (and the promise of a red-line change in the field), we have our fits, finishes and tweaks to the Blue Point plan that suit us perfectly!
And if you build with Weekley in South Carolina? Tressa will make the selection process go smoothly. She is the real deal: a funny, patient, professional who was fully present every step we took.
P.S. Our final HTS is 18 pages long and specific, very specific. We hope that means everything will go according to plan during the actual build.
Next Up: Operation ReloSouth: Lot Clearing & Dock Building in Hampton Lake, SC