Project Execution - Work Packages 3 to 5
Work package #3
Three months into the project we received a call from the management of SILC to say they had something to offer. With great expectation we went over to inspect. However, the two adjacent suites did not really lend themselves to being combined so we turned the option down. Another month went by while we became increasingly anxious. However, at the end of that time we received another call to say that two suites ideally suited for our purposes were now coming available.
And indeed they were, so we readily accepted. Actual possession would be another month out because some renovation was needed such as new carpeting. However, the management was willing to undertake our request for the connecting archway between the suites at the same time during this period rather than wait until we took possession. This suited our schedule exactly so we were well pleased.
Measuring up the suites at SILC and arranging the ½ inch-to-a-foot cutouts on our carefully plotted plans to the same scale of course, was the fun part. We found that with careful maneuvering we could fit in a good selection of our furniture. Other items like tables and shelving we chose to modify. A significant extra bonus for us was that one of the suites had a small washer-&-dryer room that we chose to use as a storeroom.
For this we made a set of full-height, self-supporting shelving seven-foot long. Getting the pieces into the elevator and into the suite, assembling the pieces in the storage room (too high to go through the door) and then into place was something of a challenge. However, our neighbor came to the rescue and our careful measurements paid off.
The main room in one of the suites we used as an "office", i.e. for our filing cabinet, computers, printer and other happy toys. We work on separate computer platforms (Mac and PC) so that requires separate workstations with plenty of working table space. These all needed customizing to fit the available space, taking many days of woodworking activity in the workshop. When done, these were assembled in our old "office" as "proof of concept". This exercise would also signal the end of my woodworking hobby days.
Work package #4
Selling our house did not quite go as planned. Just before the planned date for the start of our selling process there had been a flurry of activity in our area. An old house just down the road went up for sale. It was an "estate sale" and in our current market, the house really only suitable for demolition. The property attracted a lot of attention and numerous concurrent offers. Our agent, who happened to be also handling this sale, put out a notice calling for final offers by a deadline date. The estate executors were then able to select from the best offer. As a result, the property was sold for an unprecedented sum.
This appeared all very encouraging. At the same time it made us nervous because we felt that such a hot market could not last. Therefore, we made sure that we started our selling process as early as possible in our schedule and hoped for several concurrent offers against an asking price factored on the house down the road. But all this was not to be.
There was plenty of interest at two open houses that we held, but the market did indeed "cool down". In the event we received a couple of offers in succession, both of which fell through over difficulty in obtaining mortgages. The banks had simply taken note of a deteriorating economic climate and tightened their lending requirements. In response we lowered our expectations (i.e. our asking price) and the house eventually sold on the fourth offer. Fortunately for us, the buyer wanted a quick sale and the closing of the sale and transfer of the property took place dead on schedule as we had planned four months earlier.
Although dreaded for months, moving out was actually a breeze. At our son's suggestion we had purchased a large number of standard one cubic foot cardboard packing boxes that replaced most of the much larger boxes supplied by the moving contractor. We used our family room as a staging area where we assembled the packed boxes as well as other articles destined for different locations.
Work package #5
The "everything else" tasks all went smoothly and generally as planned. Nevertheless, these tasks were time consuming and often tedious. But finally they all got done as time became available.
15. Actual box sizes were 1.25 and 1.5 cu. ft. The essential features were that they all had the same footprint. That meant that they could be easily carried, even by us, and stacked ready for shipping to various destinations.