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Monday, October 10, 2011

During the last 4 weeks the beginning interior elements have been going into place.  First the insulation then the sheetrocking then the painting of the walls and ceilings and the interior trim and cabinets.  As of now we are anticipating being done in about three weeks if all goes well.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

The electric meter box is located in the Laundry room and is neatly installed by Encore Electric.
The Gas Fireplace with a raised hearth, which will be covered with slate tile. And the mantel shelf above that we will have a maple cover to match the cabinetry. The face of the firplace will have the same ledgestone that we are going to install on the front entry columns.

Wall stacks are used to supply the heat to the upper floor.

The furnace is 95% efficient, natural gas forced air and the water heater (not yet installed) will be a 60-70 gal. high efficiency to supply plenty of hot water for the home.

With all of the mechanical and insulation installed and inspected, sheetock was delivered on Friday, September 2 and the hangers began their work on Sunday. They should be finished sometime today and the home will be ready for the sheetrock tapers to begin.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Multi Tasking is not only a high tech word. It also suits itself well to construction.
While the plumbing and heating are being installed on the interior of the home, the deck is framed and built. We are using 2X8 pressure treated joists @ 16" on center and screwing down TREX "Accents" decking.

At the same time the windows and doors have been installed and the siding is being applied. First TYVEK is stapled in place and all of the window and door openings are taped and sealed. Then the corner boards are nailed in place as well as the window lintels, trim and sills are installed. All of the window & door lintels are also flashed with 1" "Z" flashing. 2x trim boards are added to the base of each wall and flashed. Hardiplank siding is then nailed and caulked. When the siding is completed the exterior will be ready for the painter.

The exterior front entry has also been completed with the open beams and posts. The base of each post will be framed out and finished with cultured stone. Instead of using hangers to connect the post and beams we used 3/4" Lag Bolts so that there are no metal hangers visible. The underside of the porch will be soffited with Tongue and Grove pine.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011


This week with the framing done, although the shell is complete we can continue with the other exterior phases of the project. The roofing has been installed and the deck is being framed. When the deck is finished the siding will begin. When you get to this point it can be difficult to keep the various trades from stumbling over each other, but with a little attention it can be done.

Now begins the installation of the inner workings of any home. The Plumbing, the HVAC and the electrical. We like to have the plumbing done first. This way we avoid having the plumber try to maneuver around any wiring that may have been installed. As the plumber nears completion we will have the HVAC (heating-ventilation-air conditioning) installed. Then the electrician will be called in. I am in the process of completing the electrical plan and should be done this week.

Today I also met with our cabinet people to measure up the various rooms that will be receiving cupboards. We measure this early because it will take several weeks to build and finish the cabinets. I have always been a proponent of custom cabinets verses box cabinets that are purchased from a store. This way each area can be custom fitted, down to the inch, to take advantage of the space. No fillers means no wasted space. So it is important to not overlook this timing, otherwise you may be sitting waiting for the cabinets when you are ready for them.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

As a design and construction company, we play and important role for each of our clients from the time they bring their ideas to us to design them a new home, all the way through to the handing over the keys to the front door upon completion of the project. This home is currently under the design phase with new changes being implemented. It will be ready soon to move to the budgeting phase where the costs are calculated and financing can be put in place.

If you have any questions regarding your project, no matter what stage you find yourself, we are available to help answer your questions. They can be preliminary questions about costs and permitting, or they can encompass the scope of construction that will be necessary for you to complete your project.

Give us a call (360) 733-7206 or post your inquiry here. Or you can visit our Web Site at

Regards and good luck with your project.

John Arthur Anderson

President, Blueprint Design Consultants, Inc.

4071 Hannegan Road, Suite R

Bellingham, WA 98226

Building Industry Association of Whatcom County

American Institute of Building Design

National Council of Building Design Certification

Master Builders Association, Design Professional Council

Built Green Member

Monday, August 1, 2011

Now that the shell of the home is nearly finished, we can begin with all of the pick-up framing. This entails all of the sheetrock nailers that need to be added. As well as finishing off the bonus room and dormer. This will be

great added space for the homeowners. It is certainly inexpensive living square footage that would normally be lost to the attic. aIt can be used for any number of purposes such as a guest bedroom, a craft room or a great space for games, ie pool table or ping pong for the kids.

Also the gas firplace has been installed and is ready to be framed in for the finishes that will need to be applied.

After this we will be installing the windows and doors, which were delivered to the site on Friday this past week.

Tomorrow, as well, we will install the deck ledger to the back of the home and begin framing the deck.

Monday, July 25, 2011

The stairs stringers are cut and installed and the treads and risers are nailed down.

The upper floor walls are then layed out and installed.

With the walls braced and ready for trusses we can get the detached garage framed up.

Framing of the first floor continues.

With the bracing done the 2nd floor joists can be layed out and installed the plywood layed down and nailed off.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Now that the foundation has had time to cure and the garage slab has been poured it is time to frame the home.

The treated plate has been bolted down to the foundation wall and the post and beams have been installed. The rim joists are placed on the perimeter of the building and the floor joists are measured and layed out for installation.

The subfloor is 3/4" T&G and is nailed to the floor joists after apply construction adhesive to the top flange of the joists.

With the subfloor now in place the exterior walls are ready to be built. The bottom and top plates are measured and cut and are marked for window and door placement. The studs are marked at 16" on center and the studs, cripples and headers are all nailed into place. Sheathing is applied to the exterior side, and the wall is ready to stand.

As the walls are stood upright, they are checked for level and braced in place. This process continues untill all of the exterior walls have be built and braced.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Clean & Backfilled

Now that the foundation walls have been poured and the forms stripped away we can begin to clean up.

With the forms stripped, the foundation walls can now be waterproofed.

It is always good to get the foundation cleaned up and backfilled. We now have a good level site on which to construct the home.

We will be moving into the framing stage later this week, after a few more days of allowing the concrete to cure. Framing is an exciting phase of the construction as every day you can see progress. That cannot be said about all the phases of the project. Some seem to drag on forever, with little progress, but each day a little bit more gets done. With framing you begin to see the house take shape. You can envision each room as it goes up. Think about how you're going to use it and furnish it. That is real meat & potatoes stuff.

We will have the lumber delivered sometime today for the floor package. That is the treated plate with sill seal to go onto the foundation wall. The treated 4x4 posts and the 4x10 DF beams that will hold the floor. The TJI engineered floor joists that make up the floor platform and the 3/4" OSB T&G that is the subfloor membrane. All of that should be done by the middle of next week and then come the walls.

Along the way, in the coming weeks, we'll be ordering the window and door package and before you know it, the sum of the parts will begin to resemble a finished product.

Stay tuned.

Remember, if you have any comments or questions about your own project, just give me a shout and I'll be able to guide you through the process.



Friday, June 17, 2011

Is the glass half full or is it half empty? Boy oh boy, life can throw that question in your face twenty times a day. It can turn you into a cynic or it can hone your character and mold you into the person you want to be. That very thing reared its head to take a bite out of my hide on Wednesday. I'll explain what I'm talking about.

I must say that I am pleasantly surprised to have had such nice weather for the excavation and foundation to this point. As anyone who works in the construction industry in the Pacific Northwest knows, these could have been days spent slogging around in the slop and mud which always slows progress. Which in turn puts all of the ongoing building projects behind and therefore everyone is demanding their concrete at the same time, which leads to understandable delays. So to my delight the project has been progressing well.

The phone rings Wednesday afternoon and the proverbial "Glass 1/2 empty" hit me and began to deflate my balloon. When adversity strikes it does the following. Schedules can be disrupted, anxiety & stress is felt by builders, sub contractors and owners alike. If the weather had not cooperated, this situation would certainly have been worse. The problem was that the dig out was not long enough to accomodate the garage being 10 feet from the house. When I was informed, I called our excavator immediately and Ron, who had taken his equipment to another site, pulled it together, came back that evening and fixed the problem.

Like all human endeavors, when mistakes are made, it is how you approach the remedy that makes all of the difference in your success. I did not want to put off the pour of the footings until Friday. The Friday forcast was for a change in the weather, so it was not an option in my way of thinking. Besides, our clients were excited to see the footings poured and the project moving forward and I did not want to disappoint them. Long story short, Ron was back at the site with his equipment by the end of the day, and resolved the issue so as not to delay the project. The Thursday pour was accomplished. A situation which could have delayed us 2 or 3 days was averted. We instead have finished the footings and as of this morning are stripping them and cleaning up the site.

This is exactly why I like working with people who are committed to our clients needs. Who are not in it just for the paycheck. Who have been reliable partners for many years, and who will place our clients interests ahead of their own. That is a commodity that seems to be missing so often in todays world.

Mission Accomplished - "Glass half full"