September 21, 2018

Captains log: City to Gritty

The fighter in me would tell you I’ve called 17 builders looking for the one that will accept our dream of a glass A-frame cabin and build it in a reasonable amount of time.

But the realist in me would also tell you I wake up everyday around 2-3am wide awake over this entire process.

I say “accept our dream” for a reason. I’m all for creativity and learning new opinions and suggestions from builders. But I’m honestly surprised with how many are so negative about building an A-Frame.

I’m getting to the point where I can tell within minutes of talking to builder whether or not I will work with him. Even before talking price per square foot. Literally MINUTES into saying hello and what our project is about, I already know.

At this point, I’m hiring strictly on enthusiasm and positivity. Even if that means paying $100 per sq/ft over the negative Nancy’s, it’s worth it to me to hire someone with a happy face.

YES!! I get it! It’s a difficult build site! I get it we have excavation to do. I get it we have a tiny budget for a custom off-grid mountain home. I get our access road sucks. I GET IT! Now, quit b$@&#ing about it and tell me about how cool our design will be because we decided to hire you to build it.

At the end of all the “well maybe we should just build a square shack that looks nothing like what you want” comments, I’m just like, “why do you think we should hire you at all?” I’m sooo past being polite. And yes, I’m thinking the ugly cry should just be part of my nighttime ritual.

Oh and get this, so many builders are trying to get us to jump ship away from our architect and hire them to design our house. Makes zero sense I would choose them to design it if they can’t even see the vision to build it.

Also, WHERE ARE ALL THE FEMALE BUILDERS?!?! I literally wanted to ask our most recent interviewee if they had a female on their team. With some of these build and design suggestions, reminding builders that this is a house we are raising kids in and this is why I have X, Y and Z in mind, just gives me looks like I’m asking for things that aren’t important. But these would be completely understood to a female. Or anyone that has young kids. Not “oh my youngest is now 25!” We need, “my youngest is 6 months!”

I’m learning there are 2 kinds of builders: ones that listen and create. And ones that will whine and complain and try to change you. How the 2nd kind are in business, I do not know.

But in other news, I got the paint and wallpaper to reno our RV kitchen! Pictures to come! It’s so funny I worked so hard to eliminate orange oak from my first house. And now I’m doing it again in the RV. If a builder shows me any kind of orange oak, I’m not sure what might happen. ?


  • Brad Leatham Hang in there Rachel, you will find the right person.
  • Dana Martoia Malensky Preach girl. There NEEDS to be female GC.
  • Alissa Dabasinskas While I could see the price factor being a part of why someone would turn you down. The A-Frame is just a their inexperience! It takes awhile to find a builder that meshes with your personality, a lot of GC’s are rough around the endges. But it will come, you’ll find one. Send me the plans you want to build, I want to see!
  • Mario J McCash I’m so sorry this is the reality. It’s way out of my realm of experience, I would not know how to advise you. Ugh, sorry this has to get this hard.

    Try prayer, it can’t hurt…
  • Christina Hayden Rachel McCash Cronin I have the perfect builder for you! Inbox me!