The journey of two millennials

Welcome to Fun Home Building, a blog on design, construction and building a dream house on a budget. We are documenting our journey of building a custom home in the suburb of twin cities, Minnesota and will share what we learn along the way.

  • House on West Shore

Week Three: Framing Started

Updated: Nov 2, 2019

We have long known that framing is the most fascinating stage of home building—it is when the walls and floors are being constructed and the house starts to take shape. On Monday, when the carpenters started to put up lumbers, needless to say, we were very excited and watched with amazement all of the changes being made everyday.

Floor trusses on the main level were the first to go in

We had picture perfect days at the beginning of framing, big help to the project

The father-and-son trio worked efficiently and we were amazed by how much this small team was able to accomplish within a day

The most noticeable difference of being inside a constructed space versus looking at a two-dimensional design plan is the sense of surroundings. Firstly, we were not fully aware of how short of a distance there is between our house and our backyard neighbor. The steep slope makes the usable space even smaller. Secondly, although we have a large window in the living room and a patio door by the dining room, we will be looking straight into our neighbor’s yard—their deck, hot tub, swing set and lawn. Uh-oh. DH thought it’s nice that we can “share” our neighbor’s beautifully maintained yard, but I felt it’s too “intimate” and kind of wish the pine trees on the boarder would grow faster to provide some privacy. Our house has one area that provides great view—the east side overlooks part of a large lake. Which brings to my third observation: our two rooms with potential view of the lake only have south facing windows—we kept these to save money from installing windows on two walls and to take advantage of southern exposure. We didn’t really think too much of the loss of view. For me, it was primarily a financial decision.

Now standing inside the framed walls, I realized, what a waste. Having a window looking directly at the lake will make up for the subpar view in the backyard and definitely become a selling point for this house. We should change it before it is too late.

This became our change order #4. To save money, we asked for a picture window for only the second level bedroom instead of two casements . And because the carpenters were still work on first floor, there is limited extra cost in labor. Ultimately, the addition of $1160 was well worth it.

Framing in progress on the main level

Standing in kitchen looking at the living room

Basement under construction, light shines in from atop


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