Building our new home in Belize, the Good, Bad and yes Horrible that happens

“The massive folding door and kitchen window will be here from Guatemala Tuesday !”

                                 What you always need to ask is “What Tuesday”!

 

So, over the past week or so, things have gone from “not so great”  to ” Ok, it’s possible that we can actually be living in our new home, by the holidays, or soon after”!

door1

And the frame and panels for the massive folding door between great room and deck finally arrives.

About three weeks ago, my builder Keven started telling me that the large folding doors to the deck and large folding kitchen window to deck, would arrive “Tuesday”. Two weeks ago he also told me that he was told by the company that the windows were being delivered to the Guatemalan border, on Saturday. After almost a month of bullshit, a beautiful white truck, with delivery guys in company uniforms, arrived this Monday, with both folding windows. I am no longer relieving my cranium of hair, or turning remaining hair pure white. I thought for sure they would be installing them as this was in the morning.

door2

Good news, the frame fits !

 

Right! Like that’s going to happen! They inform Kevin and I that the “installation guys” will return on Thursday, to install the door and window.

window

 Wow! The frame for folding kitchen window fits too 😉 That’s my builder Kevin Brodsky there, checking the fit.

 

As I bang on the keys, I realize, I never asked what Thursday! Fu#k!

 

Other things have been happening this past week or two, including the installation of the water system under the house. This is a small storage tank, pressure tank and pump, and purification system, as well as the two air conditioning units.

water:air

Water tank,pressure tank and pump installed, and 2 air conditioning units installed.

In the other area designated as the “outside laundry”, the plumber installed the instant gas hot water system and all associated valves and lines for washer and dryer.

heater

Instant hot water system and water filter installed.

Marsha and I are introducing Belize to a new kind of “wire” for use on decks in place of wood slats. Its called “Finished-line-fencing”, and is like wire pasture fencing, but without metal wire. It’s a plastic/poly white line that has a mega stretching capacity, can take a tree or 3000 lb. horse putting pressure on it. I installed this in Oregon, the only place to get it, as replacement for all my New Zealand horse fencing. It doesn’t change color, won’t rot or break, and is safe if you fall against it. And it looks great! We are using this on our front and back stairs and decks.

fence1

Our special “plastic wire” fencing on front deck.

Conrad our custom woodworker is busy creating all our cabinets, counters and doors for the house. He came last week and installed the double doors on our concrete “security room” under the house.

fence2

Custom special white plastic wire installed in railings on back deck.

And then there is the outdoor shower. The privacy walls are built and installed, and the inside shower area is being covered with pieces of beautiful stone. The floor of the shower, has been  painstakingly  covered, one stone at a time.

showerwall

Walls going up around outdoor shower.

 

So as things move ahead, and I have been here almost a full year watching everything about the building of our new home, some things about building here in Belize, are clear to me.

You definitely need to be here watching, to make changes when necessary, and to avoid issues later down the road. The Belize worker in general, moves at his own pace, and if you get frustrated easily by delays, building a new house here may just kill you!

Many businesses, sub contractors and specialty suppliers (carpenters, furniture and cabinet builders, appliance and electrical suppliers, etc.) do not perform or build things for you, “on credit” for your builder. Most businesses and services here in Belize, at least on mainland Belize, have been burned in the past by homes, businesses and developments failing. They lost plenty of money when investors, builders, contractors and owners boogied from Belize, leaving them holding the bag (of bills).

I recently read an article here in Belize about Atlantic Bank International, who loaned millions on three homes being built in a development up Sittee River way, that failed. The bank has these three houses in foreclosure, and just can’t sell them.

If you are coming here to buy land and build a house, bring lots of cash, or hit a bank, because you’re going to need lots of money, and patience.

That being said, I truly believe its all worth it.

Cheers all,

 

The Pirate…Gary

 

 

 

 

 

 

About storiesbygary

I am a Freelance Writer / Photographer, writing travel related articles for international magazines, blogs and websites and my own published books.
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