One of the hardest things for me throughout the plan selection and design process, is not knowing where we were at relative to our budget.  It’s easy to get carried away when you don’t have dollars and cents in front of you!  So, we finally got some numbers on the Sullivan’s Run house with the customizations that we had come up with, and to say the least, we were well over budget.  Somehow, I had this feeling that that was the case, but I now we know for sure.

Looking back at our plan selection process, we had limited ourselves substantially due to some guidance from our Barden Sales Rep.  At the same time, we were adding to the Sullivan’s Run plan to accommodate our needs.  So, when the numbers came in, we looked for ways to “trim fat” from our house, and still keep some of the niceties we were after.  Well, it started to look hopeless, so we started to review plans that were bigger than the original Sullivan’s Run, but smaller than the customized Sullivan’s Run we had designed.

After some research, we found a great plan that has all of the things we’re looking for, plus a price that fits our budget.  The new plan that we’re working with is the Whitaker Corner’s home.  This house is 3278 square feet, versus 3080 for the original Sullivan’s Run, and 3756 of our modified Sullivan’s Run.  So, after the changes, we’re losing about 500 square feet.  That’s fine with us versus the cost difference, and the home is still about 800 square feet bigger than our last house, and much more of what we’re after.

I’m not sure if our list of priorities have changed, but here was our wish list:

  • Master Suite Upstairs
  • Cathedral or Vaulted ceiling in the family room
  • An Office area
  • At least a 2 car garage
  • Relatively open floor plan
  • Dining room
  • Living room
  • 4 bedrooms (including master)
  • at least 2.5 baths

We had a bunch of other nitnoid things that we wanted, but those were the core items, and we found them with the Whitaker Corner’s design.

Some External Changes

While we love the plan, we do have some change requests that we’re hoping won’t be too big of a deal.  Some to enhance the external aesthetics, and some to make the house more functional for us.  The external aesthetic changes were to make the house look a little more exciting, because the original plan is fairly bland, as you can see:


This house didn’t do itself any favors by using a drabby color (in my opinion), and no shutters…

We found a house from another builder’s site that we’d like to use as an example for the front of our Whitaker Corner’s house:


We would like to create the center stone column, and overhang, as well as the center peak on the roof.  The secondary peak would be nice, but I think in the spirit of cost-cutting, we’ll do with out that.  Our home will not have the dormer over the garage, and will not have the 3rd car garage.  The garage door will face forward though, like the picture above.  We’ll be going with black shutters as well.

Some Internal Changes

Here are a couple of images I sent our general contractor to explain the changes we’d like made to the floor plan.  See if you can keep up :)

1st Floor


2nd Floor


Our GC is a saint for dealing with us changing plans and me sending him drawings like this!