Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Upgrades, Upgrades!!!

My favorite post of others' blogs is always the upgrades they chose so I'm going to share ours with you now!  The incentives Ryan was offering for our neighborhood were the free morning room, side entry garage, hardwood in the foyer and tile in the upstairs baths.  They also threw in corian counters (which we upgraded to granite for a small price), stainless steel appliances, and an upgraded kitchen faucet.  In my FINAL last ditch negotiations I also got them to give us the luxury master bedroom/bathroom with the sitting room for free, $2,000 off of a bay window in the dining room and $2,500 closing assistance (that is actually coming from NVR).
Bottom line, don't be afraid to negotiate and ask for stuff for free!  I'm pretty sure our sales rep wanted to kill be by the time we were through, but when all was said and done we got about $35,000 worth of upgrades for free so it was worth it!  Above and beyond the free stuff, we tried to only do structural-type upgrades that we couldn't easily do later... 4 ft family room extension, some extra windows, and the oak stairs.  There's some other little stuff here and there, but all in all I think we were pretty reasonable.  Below is a list of our final upgrade list and approximate prices.
Our floorplan can be viewed here, with some of the options shown.  Here are the options we went with:
Elevation C, siding front ($6,495) (I would have loved brick, but that would have been $20,000)
*Morning room ($0, normally $16,795)
*Luxury master bedroom/bathroom layout with sitting room ($0, normally $5,995)
4' Extension on family room ($5,895)
*2 car, side entry garage ($0, normally $5,495)
Full basement, unfinished ($0)
*Bay window in rear of dining room ($495, normally $2,495)
2 extra windows in morning room ($990)
2 extra windows in family room ($990)
Recessed lighting (6 lights) in kitchen ($895)
Level 4 maple cognac cabinets ($1,995)
*Level 1 granite counters ($1,100, normally $3,650)
*Stainless Steel appliances ($0, normally $1,895)
Double bowl in upstairs hall bathroom ($695)
Level 1 Maple spice cabinets in both upstairs bathrooms ($280)
Oak stair with oak bullnose handrail ($3,125... Greg tried to fight me on this one but I really wanted them... it makes such a difference in the entryway from the normal carpeted steps with the plain handrail)
2 ceiling fan rough-ins (morning room and family room) ($350 for both)
Floodlight in back yard ($250)
Extra outlet in front of house for spotlight ($225)
*Kitchen faucet upgrade level 1 (pullout faucet) ($0, normally $295)
Upgraded carpet pad (level A) in family room and upstairs ($875)
*Hardwood foyer ($0, normally $1,000)
Hardwood powder room ($150)
This is what it would have looked like if we didn't get the upgrade :( ...

...and this is what it will look like with the upgrade :)

As for colors, we chose a clay siding with black shudders/door and white trim.  It will look like this (we won't have the peak on the garage, which I'm bummed about):
I am already starting a list of projects I want to do to upgrade ourselves... hardwood, backsplash, finished basement, crown molding, wainscoting, etc.  It's going to be so hard to wait a whole year to start anything!  I am very excited to be able to start making our home OURS!


  1. Welcome to the building and blogging world! It's an amazing experience and I'm so glad that we documented the process with a blog. I love going back and reliving all the progress. Good luck with your build!

    That's awesome that you were able to negotiate so many upgrades. In our area, they don't seem to negotiate quite so much, but we managed to get upgraded landscaping for free and half off the morning room, finished basement, upgraded kitchen cabinets and upgraded owner's bath.

    1. It sounds like you got a lot of stuff for free too! The finished basement was so expensive so we decided not to get it and do it ourselves down the road... that's huge!

  2. Yeah, kinda hate you on all the free upgrades. Kidding. Well ... I am jealous, but won't hold it against you .

    Congrats on the build and blog. Excited to follow along!

    1. Thanks! Believe me, it was not a pleasant negotiating experience, but hopefully it was worth it. Thanks for following!


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