Our rep Heather was very nice, but maybe not 100% informed on all of the products. Couldn't answer questions on how the engineered floor was installed. Wasn't sure if we could paint certain cabinets. Didn't have the Ryan selection pricing sheet to give us numbers on anything (we brought our own). Didn't mention soap dishes/shelves, etc. I thought I had prepared well in advance by reading other Ryan build blogs, but was quickly overwhelmed with choices and lost sight of my plan.
I went to that appointment with the goal of keeping everything base level, knowing we would update later. Hubs had different ideas, and was willing to suck it up and do floors on the first floor IF we found something we loved. So, that started well.
With a little bit of help, I narrowed down the kitchen selections to two very different "looks".
#1 - Rushmore painted hazlenut glaze cabinets, Santa Cecelia granite, and Rural Living Deep Java floors
#2 - Rushmore white cabinets, don't remember greyish granite, and dark grey-washed floors.
I've been completely paranoid about choosing anything too trendy, for fear it will forever date the house as "built in 2016". So option #1 felt too themed/ French Country/ Shabby Chic. None of which is my jam. I wasn't sold on the glaze, but was OK with the cream cabinets. I LOVED the Santa Cecelia granite and the floors. Option #2 felt a bit too cold/modern and more trendy. Plus, because of the laminate covering, the white wasn't paintable in the future. Feeling completely pressured and unsure of myself, I selected option #1.
We moved on to carpets, and fairly quickly decided to keep the base carpet upstairs and in the basement, but to upgrade to the 8lb (upgrade 1) padding on the second floor. We upgraded to level C carpet in the family room and study, with the same 1 level upgraded pad. We tried to find a carpet color that was somewhere between tan and grey for decorating ease, and found Macaroon for the upgrade, and Warm Stone for the base carpet.
So.Not.Excited about carpet situation.
On to tile and bathroom land...my mantra here was "pick the least offensive free option!" What fun.
For the hall and guest bathrooms, I picked (wait for it.....white square tiles) for the shower surround. No fancy listellos for us! The least offensive vinyl was another quick pick - Armstrong Initiator Glenville Creme. The hubs will tile these floors later, and paint and shower curtains will solve these problems. I wish we could have afforded the double sink vanity upgrades, but again, we can do that later. Cabinets will be inoffensive Fairfield Wheat.
We decided that since we were going all in for the soaking tub/shower with seat upgrade here, hubs suggested that we should just suck it up and do the master bath how we wanted it. I was on board with the plan, and honestly, the tile upgrades prices are really not that bad.
We selected a level C (3) upgrade - Parkway Floor and Polaris. A large vertical white rectangle shower surround tile, greige square floor tile, and blue/grey/green rectangular glass accent tiles. Pretty modern, but I was on board! Picked a level 1 cabinet upgrade Tahoe Cherry Bordeaux, and a cultured marble countertop called Carrara Gray.
We leave. I'm full of angst and spend the weekend texting pictures of our selections to everyone and their brother for advice. The most "intense" advice comes from an an architect friend who doesn't pull punches.
She called my beloved Santa Cecelia granite "vomit countertop". OMG. For the record, "vomit countertop" is industry slang for "tan/brown colored counters with chunks". Yikes. I could feel my love fading. She offered her advice after viewing my Pinterest kitchen love pins:
White/cream cabinets, light grey-er countertops, dark floors.
Back to the drawing board.
I call Coleman to schedule a round two appointment for Monday, 1.18.16. Hubs is working on the MLK holiday, so I invite a friend to join me.
A cabinet surprise of epic proportions awaited us!
Apparently THAT DAY, Ryan started offering different colored islands for the same price as the level 3 cabinet upgrade. Well....that sure changes things!
We pretty quickly chose to keep the creme cabinets for the walls, after again ruling out the whites. For the island, a complimentary Rushmore espresso. I keep the Deep Java floors I love, and change out the vomit counters for New Caledonia. We have a winner, and I feel GOOD!
While I was angsting all weekend, the hubs had decided he didn't love the white shower tiles we had initially picked, was afraid of white grout turning grungy looking, and preferred a more natural stone "spa" look. Loud sigh. So we looked at that next. There really aren't that many tile options available, so this process is quick. A "hate" pile grows quickly, the "ehh" pile is medium, and the "love" pile is very slim, and generally very expensive. No real surprise there.
So it was fairly quick work to select the "Florentine Floor & Wall" bathroom package level E/5. A gorgeous striated greige square floor tile and rectangular shower tile with large square accent tiles. Upgrade level 2 Scottsdale espresso cabinets, a cream travertine shower corner shelf, and Crema-Marfil countertops completed the look. I was happy again, despite the ever-increasing budget.
Also noted - a white or almond shower pan is standard. Our rep mentioned in passing that we could upgrade to a tile shower floor for a shockingly high amount (don't remember price, just that it was way too high to consider in the blown budget). But it's definitely something to think about, because you can't upgrade that yourself later! This was not on Ryan's upgrade selection sheet, so make a note to ask about it if it's something you want to consider!
All was well....for 3 days.
I get a text from the flooring rep on Thursday. The master bath tile is for NV Homes only, I can have the floor and wall tiles, but the accent tile would be an additional $1045 upgrade.
ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME??????
I'm working on booking my third visit. Our sales rep also neglected to show us/tell us about selecting a stain for the handrails, so we'll need to do that as well.
1.26.16 - Third visit was the charm.
After another review of the somewhat limited selections, I ended up with the same "Florentine Nociolla Floor & Wall" without the listello. At second view, I decided I didn't really love that detail anyway, and that the tiles alone had a higher end look without it. Very hotel/spa/glam.
Also learned that they will automatically match your banister stain to your floor (color: Mocha), and our tile selections come with a pre-selected grout (color: Urban Putty) to match. I liked both, so that was finally something easy!
2.5.16 update - I've learned from reading more Ryan blogs, that many of you were able to mix and match your tiles with additional listello options. We were told we could only choose tile sets from the same board, and that there were not "additional" listello options anywhere. I guess I could have asked if we could swap listellos among the approved boards at the same upgrade level, but I didn't think of it at the (3) times. I can't think about it anymore, because I start feeling my heart squeeze, so I'm letting it go.
|Alternate #1 master bath tile (not selected)|
|Alternate #3 master bath tile (not selected)|
|Base level carpet selection specs|
|Kitchen Choice - round 1 (ultimately kept the cabinets & floor)|
|Carpet upgrade level C specs (study)|