Renovation Woes

Being that I'm spending a lot of my time on the renovation of our teeny-tiny unit, I thought I might as well write about it. Even if just to let it out of my system.

Unit already had a functional kitchen when it was turned over to us.

Our unit was up for acceptance about 3 months ago. H and I were excited first-time condo unit owners but I was invested in it. A big chunk of my salary goes to its monthly amortization. I was the one who pushed for it (given that it's just across my office). And I was the one who worked with the different departments of the developer just to have the unit expedited (read: developer has already stretched the grace period and I   demanded that they shoulder hotel expenses should they not deliver within that grace period). From the beginning, I fought for this unit. And it seems, until now, I still am.

The sink in the bathroom is more appropriate for a powder room but we no longer have the budget (and it's sayang) to replace it.

Looking for an interior designer was the very first step. I approached several but eventually ended up with someone recommended by an officemate. I wanted an expert to handle the design aspect but I was the one who exhausted all the possible layout for our teeny-tiny unit (I knew how I wanted to live in that space). That's why I'd recommend those who are space constricted to check out Apartment Therapy's annual Small Cool Apartment contest. Lots of ideas outside the box. Now, the ID was the one who put the design plans into paper and is responsible with color and details.

Looking for a contractor was not easy considering the schedule I was looking for and the budget. I approached one who's a known contractor (even with celebrities, very pleasant and pragmatic person) and he gave me very practical advise: I don't need one and to just go modular. But being that we're first time owners and didn't have the necessary network, I thought it best to get a contractor. That, and I couldn't find people who are willing to just work on the cove lighting that H wanted. So we hired one who happens to be my officemate's husband. He promised to deliver everything within 5 weeks.

Initially happy with the ceiling works until our ID pointed out how thick the ceilings were (which explained why the place felt heavy)!

Trust is such a precious thing especially when it comes to home renovation when a home is such a personal thing. When I realized that the contractor hadn't followed the plan to the letter, warning bells rang in my head. I was alarmed. Immediately called the contractor about the issue and he was quick to reassure me that the plan was being followed.

H got what he wanted with the lighting. Note that the contractor removed the existing kitchen.

They've even changed the lighting in the bathroom.

So we were very happy with the updated ceiling work. And they were able to update it in a short time as well.  Now we're just waiting for the glass to be delivered for the sliding partition and for the contractor's supplier to deliver the kitchen cabinets, kitchen "island", and the closet and sliding doors for the closet.

So you could just imagine the smile on my face when one day, I came in and found these: mirror and sliding panels already in place.

Until closer inspection revealed:
A crack!

And another crack! Make that cracks!

There was a crack on each of the sliding panels! I decided to sleep on it and wait for the next day for the contractor to inform me of the mishap. But no call came and when I checked the unit again, the sliding panels had no sign of the cracks anymore!


Had to call the contractor to inform him of incident. I asked him (nicely) if we could have the glass replaced considering it should still be under warranty from the supplier to which he agreed.

But the next day, I visited the site again and found this!

I thought these were going to be replaced?! So why were they still being painted? Aaaargh!!! I was angry but didn't want to show it to him. I again called him and asked him why the sliding panels were still being painted when they should have been pulled out already. I reiterated that these panels should be replaced. He acquiesced and finally the above have been pulled out. Now, I'm still waiting for the replacements.

It's already the 5th week. Our kitchen still stands bare. I was promised a delivery date last Friday. I was informed that they were going to be late Friday. So I said, ok, meet you on Saturday then. But no delivery Saturday. Called the contractor for updates, and was informed that the cabinets have been delivered Saturday evening but since they couldn't go in the building at a late hour, had to leave the kitchen on site (I don't know where in the building they left it) but I let the story go. I was expecting work to start earlier being that Monday and Tuesday were a holiday but no work was done today. I again called the contractor, he said they are going to start work tomorrow. I now realize there was no delivery (unless there's another plausible reason?). It's possible delivery is still tomorrow. Trust has been broken on so many counts and levels already. I'm worried but I'll give him one more day.

Update (2011-Sept-02): I was right about the contractor lying to me about the delivery last week but the supplier did deliver some of the cabinets yesterday. Keyword here being some. Now the contractor can't get ahold of his supplier anymore. To the contractor's credit, he came clean earlier about his supplier. He's looking for ways to rectify the situation already and he has offered to pay for our accommodation in the meantime (which was also stipulated in  our contract in case of delays). We'll see how this turns out. Keep you posted.


freeswan said...

ugh! rye, this is such a pain in the ass. sakit sa ulo tanan giagian nmo sa contractor. but don't worry, this shall pass. at least you have your own home na. :)

rye said...

yes mels. sakit jud sa ulo. not to mention pati sa dughan. hopefully mahuman na kai murag it half a year na ko ga trabaho ani. i wana see results! that and i'm excited na pud to move in :)

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