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Posted by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 2/8/2016

The luxury of having taken so long to get here allowed me to mull over just what we want to end up building. The bane of taking so long is we have time to mull over just what we want to end up building. In other words, we vacillate between larger (the original plans) and simply large (the scaled down plans).


Being in a resort with skiing and summer activities, many homes are rented out, especially during the ski season. I have always had in the back of my mind that we could rent out the middle level for additional income. Being located directly on a ski slope, it would be in strong demand with few others competing. Sandra had been holding back on the idea, until she recently saw just what rental prices are here. They were a surprise to both of us, and she quickly became a convert.

As I have mentioned in earlier posts both on this blog and the two other ones, Sandra is very good at spatial design. With the idea of using the scaled-down footprint, last week she set about redesigning the layout of the middle level to keep the two bedrooms, the bunk room, the mud (ski) room, and the living room (was a media room), laundry, and add a kitchen and dining area. In a space that was 25% smaller than before. The arrangement was changed completely. It was tough. It was helped by adding another five feet to the depth (if that's the right word). But over the entire length, that adds up to half of the area we originally chopped off in the revised design. Without the additional depth, it would be a very tight squeeze. So - do we go back to the original size? Using a smaller footprint forces a large number of compromises, especially if you are looking at trying to capture premium rental rates. It also eliminates the possibility of us having family visit while renting as it eliminated a couple of bedrooms. In addition, we would now have to look at having to add back some space to make a smaller footprint work.

So it was back to reviewing the original design. Using the costs from the Mutton Busting and Barrel Race projects as guides, and material costs I had worked up a couple years ago for the basic structure, we arrived at a cost that may be acceptable to us, especially when rental income is factored into the equation. there will be the necessary mods to the rental level, and we will move the main stairs to the back of the house, reducing a large number of windows, and a few other changes, but I think we're back to the original basic design. I'll start searching for a draftsman to redraw the plans and provide more details than the original architect ever did, and start opening up discussions with local builders on the shell construction.


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