Written by Ivan on June 13th, 2008
Moving went quite smooth. The distance from Espoo to Inkoo is about 60km, so in one day we managed to move almost all boxes and furniture with a rental van. Next day was reserved for trips to IKEA and other furniture shops to pick up some furniture and then assemble it at home.
As in any new house there are things that don’t work from the start and need to be fixed. In our case the house is technically still under construction – terrace and balcony are missing, a some wooden elements still need to be put in place, car shed needs to be finished and of course the yard needs to be done.
First evening in the new house was quite interesting – hot water disappeared completely from all the taps – had to study user manual for the water heater – in the end just rebooting its computer solved the problem. Then there was a lot of small things – attaching missing door handles in the kitchen, installing additional lights in the bathrooms. Now two ceramic basins arrived for the upstairs bathrooms – need to install them as well, getting a plumber from Vilsa (our misfortunate contractors) takes forever.
Terrace and balcony construction have progressed well, and we are right on track to hold the final inspection in the end of July/beginning of August.
Written by Ivan on May 30th, 2008
Great day today! Inkoo construction inspector approved the house – we can move in now. It was a really close call – last electric works were done just in the morning before inspection, and we have the move planned for the next day.
Inspector made a few notes about missing fire alarm, safety of the stairs, height of the thresholds in the bathrooms, etc. But the main thing is – house is suitable for habitation.
Written by Ivan on May 27th, 2008
Last seven days were really busy. Result is amazing though. Interior works are mostly done, with just a few details remaining – like some of door handles are not yet installed. Ventilation system was finished and certified. More than 15m3 of garbage has been sorted and sent for recycling and landfill.
Electrical works still continue tomorrow – few outside lights are missing, kitchen lights still need to be installed and the final certification of the electrical system is missing.
Today a water meter has been installed, tomorrow water closets and taps/showers will be installed, so that it is possible to start cleaning of the house.
Still two days to go before official inspection on Friday.
Written by Ivan on May 18th, 2008
Good progress again on interior works. Library has been completely done, glass doors installed – they look really nice – just enough light get through the stairwell window.
Kitchen installation has been started – all cabinets are in place, wine cooler, freezer, fridge, dishwasher have been installed.
Few mistakes have been made though – forgot about wall tiles for the kitchen – need to deliver them to the site, and now a couple of electrical outlets will have to be re-done. Electrical cable for the bar shelf lights have been done in the wrong place – need to move it 40cm, so a part of the wall will have to be repainted.
Small things keep popping up – like the lights for the kitchen and bathroom walls are still needed, a light with motion detector for the garbage shed, etc.
The biggest worry is still water and sewerage – with just two weeks to go nothing has been installed or tested, and contractor didn’t return my calls on Friday.
Written by Ivan on May 15th, 2008
Today new front door was installed instead of temporary one. Last night I was trying to remember why did we decide to go for a brown door? Today when I saw it in its final place I remembered – looking from inside it perfectly matched stairs and fitted cabinets in the hall.
Lights in bathrooms, showers, sauna, housekeeping room have been installed – we are quite please with our choices. Wiring for the outside lights have been done. It was interesting to learn that clearly visible house number on the outside wall is a requirement from emergency services – so that they can clearly identify the right house in case of emergency.
Small finishing touches are done in all rooms. Still need to bring more lights tomorrow and discuss installation details with electrician.
Written by Ivan on May 14th, 2008
Project is going full speed ahead. A lot of small details still need to be fixed – like installing locks, door handles, window handles, etc.
Fitted furniture is now partially installed in bathrooms, in housekeeping room and in guest room. One unpleasant discovery was that housekeeping room furniture was 80cm lower than expected – somehow an error crawled into the order papers. It is easily fixable though – we’ll just order additional upper cabinets.
At last water heater/ground source heat pump was installed. Now it is being connected and the tests are due. Electricians are connecting the lights. Mason finished fireplace installation and ran the test – smoke really goes through the chimney into the air, and not into the apartment.
Most important thing – stairs have been installed, so it is possible to move between floors now without risking to break your neck.
Date for the construction inspection has been set – 30th of May. If it goes fine, we can move in right after it.
Written by Ivan on May 10th, 2008
Today was a good shopping day. Got Massive Oslo wall lamps for the terrace, balcony and porch, a light with house number on it. Also ordered two Cello jordan shower walls.
Meanwhile in the house parquet floors were completely done on the second floor, and fitted cabinets were installed n the guest room, making a little bit more space on the first floor.
A replacement for broken sauna board has arrived. Still waiting for fireplace stone replacement.
Written by Ivan on May 9th, 2008
Last week I hired one extra contractor to speed up the works, and results are already visible. That is the difference between construction and software engineering. Adding extra people close to the end of the project actually makes sense.
Parquet floors have been done in 4 rooms, floor and ceiling mouldings mostly done. Now next week will be spent installing fitted furniture that now takes enormous amount of space on the first floor. After that is done, floors in the library and in the living room can be finaized.
The biggest worry is still the delay of water heater installation and all other related stuff – taps, showers, sinks, toilets. Vilsa Oy is unable to provide a specialist for installation already for over a month, proving to be the most troublesome contractor of this project.
Otherwise everything is going by the plan and level of confidence is quite high – already ordered internet-connection transfer and requested changes to population register system.
Written by Ivan on May 5th, 2008
Time flies when you are having fun – another month has passed. Not so much visible progress, although 2 skilled construction workers have spent 20 working days on the site.
Mostly that’s because works that have been done are really time consuming. All tiles have been done – kitchen floor, bathroom walls and floors, shower walls and floors, sauna. Ceiling panels have been installed in all rooms. Electrical switches and outlets, as well as floor heating controls have been put in place everywhere, all painting works have been done.
Kitchen cabinets and equipment (fridge, freezer, wine fridge, cooker, oven, dishwasher) have been delivered – but not yet unpacked. Parquet floors have been delivered – so we could get a glance at how it all is going to look like – dark floors, dark kitchen work surface and white cabinets.
Sauna boards, fiber lights, and sauna stove have been installed. Stairs have been delivered – but not yet unpacked.
Of course there was a new share of disappointments and problems – ground source heat pump is still not installed – fitter couldn’t do it the first time because he had to redo the pipes and then he got sick and didn’t show up for work; floor tiles boxes were marked incorrectly, so floor tiles were mixed up between two bathrooms – but the resulting combination was not bad at all, so we decided to leave it as is. One of sauna boards was delivered broken – have to wait for a replacement now. Fireplace stones were incorrectly cut at the factory, mason had contacted the manufacturer to get the proper ones, but that’ll take another week.
Anyway, the “moving in” date is set – 31st of May. Even though we know that house is not going to be completely ready by that date, it should be safe and everything should be functioning.
Written by Ivan on April 10th, 2008
After lengthy and intensive negotiations with subcontractors, drawing 3D models and measuring equipment and available spaces, issues from last week were mostly resolved. Electrical outlet and switch were move, so that they can now peacefully coexist with fitted closet, pipe was moved from housekeeping room to technical room (a bit of refactoring , ground source heat pump is now to be installed in a technical room as well, as originally planned, pipes for washing machine were moved to the right place. Stairs to the second floor are now not covering the window, but are going around it, so that window can be easily opened.
Weinberg’s Second Law states: “If builders built houses the way programmers built programs, the first woodpecker to come along would destroy civilization.” This is the sixth construction project that I am involved in and somehow I am beginning to doubt if there is any difference between civil and software engineering. Same as in software engineering there are good, productive, responsible construction workers and suppliers, and there are not so good and responsible ones. There are “bugs” in houses, that need to be “debugged”, or just left to be there forever, because release is near, and noone has the time to fix them.
Otherwise, there’s been good progress again – on the second floor ceiling panels have been installed , electrical switches and outlets put in place, on the first floor walls were painted and ceiling panels installation has been started. Walls in bathrooms and toilets are being tiled. Still a lot of work to do, but overall it’s starting to look like the house we planned