15 August 2017


Reach Out and Build packed up and left last week, Aug 9, and here's what our house looks like:

Banner bolt doesn't go in at all - it just ends at the top of the hole rendering it completely useless. The gate now worries me as I've seen how even a light breeze can have it slamming into one of the cars.

They really do not care how your house looks - splotches of excess paint are all over the place (too many to post here). I've told them that I'm coming over to their homes and office to give them the same paint job.

I asked them to convert one of the electrical outlets to 110v (which they did), but the electrician needed to insert a grounding wire. He assured me that insects will not enter the hole they made for said wire. Uh, okay, if you say so... Also, thanks for giving stray cats something to play with.

This is at eye level beside the front door. I'm guessing that when they took off the masking tape and newspaper used for painting the door, the paint got ripped off. It's been a few weeks since they did the door and never bothered to repair the surrounding area - that tells you that they think this is completely acceptable.

They cemented the bottom part of the wall, but never mentioned anything about coming back to paint it.

Their name should be changed to Reach Out and DESTROY. On the left is part of our garage floor, and on the right is green paint peeking out from when they fixed the exterior window frames. Also, more splotches of white paint.

I wonder what else I'll find?

Reach Out and Build has promised to come back to repair everything including a leaking faucet they installed. The dripping was rather loud, so not sure why they didn't notice...

Oh, and the leaking carport roof? Dionel, the one in charge of our house, told me that I should not be worried about a drip here or there. Only waterfall-like leaks are what I should find alarming. What I find alarming is that he thought drips are acceptable. I sent them the following text message:

"Let me ask you this, if you bought an expensive bag or shirt with a small hole in it, wouldn't you return it and have it exchanged?

I am already dealing with the wrong color roof, aforementioned hideous screen door, and incorrect shelves. Not to mention paying for a cement floor that didn't work out. Must I also put up with a dripping roof? No one told me in the beginning that I should expect dripping. If it were your roof, would you accept it?

Considering the history of being told that things have been fixed, only to find out the opposite being true, please note that I will wait for heavy rainfall to check the roof before giving the final payment. And that the gate doesn't give in to the slightest gust of wind."

10 August 2017

The Tale of the Temporary Cement Floor

At the suggestion of our landscaper, we extended the cement floor at our backyard. I thought it was a great idea - it wouldn't be muddy going to the outdoor sink, and there would be a bit more space for other things like a small grill.

Unfortunately, with just a little bit of rain, water started pooling at the newly cemented area. So with the typhoon season now in full swing, we were facing the possibility of our ground floor getting flooded before we even moved in! Our contractor's solution? Create a hole at the bottom of the wall, and have the water drain out to the neighbor's backyard... Unbelievable, but true.

The ones over at Reach Out and Build apparently did not bother to check the house plans, or look around to see if there was a storm drain nearby before constructing the cement floor. The thing is, when I once complained about how badly the carport was built, one of the founders, Sir Buddy, cut me off and told me that he was an expert.

Wouldn't an expert know how things might end up by studying the area? And if he wasn't sure, wouldn't he first consult the blueprints or ask the village management about how the house works? Well, none of that happened. They only decided to physically check and consult the village engineer after I got mad at them.

And that was how we found out that all the houses built by Avida do not have gutters, and none are connected to the village storm drains. The rain from the roof just falls to the ground and the water is not directed elsewhere. It is up to the homeowner to build a drainage system, which according to the village manager, will cost around Php 100,000.

Earl said that he's tired of all the expenses and just wants to move in, so we had the cement floor removed. Though we were warned that it won't make much of a difference as that area is lower than the rest of the property, and with the walls now bordering the house, the water will have nowhere else to go.

So that was a complete waste of time and money - all of which could have been avoided had our contractor been an actual expert. Because if he really knew what to do, he could have recommended that the cement floor would not be a good idea. Or to suggest building the storm drain along with the fence so that the yard won't collect water every time it rains.

Time to buy a submersible pump?

05 August 2017

Supplier Ratings: Landscaper

Supplier: Cristina's Lawn & Garden
Price Tag: Php 47,400
Rating: Php 8/10 (10 being the highest)

Pros: The owner, Ms. Celia Castro, was very easy to deal with and it took them about three days to finish everything.

Cons: Nothing major. Some of the stepping stones were not positioned correctly in that the gaps are not uniform. For example, 13 inches at one end, 8 inches on the other end, and 10 inches in the middle.

The garden looks a bit scraggly, but that's because I decided to go with young plants as they're cheaper. I'm also debating whether or not to wait a few months for the plants to grow before adding more.

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