Monday, February 22, 2010

The Excitement Begins as the Trip Nears

We are leaving for Belize in just over two weeks and we are still deciding on what needs to be accomplished while we are there. Apply for the QRP, renew the vehicle registration and insurance, look for a local doctor and pick out our tiling are just a few things on our list...and it only seems to get longer. I will be down a few weeks longer than Mischelle, so I should be able to get most everything accomplished.

New pictures have finally arrived and work has indeed begun again on our home. The openings for the patio doors are being enlarged, the cistern cover has been poured and the patio columns are finished. It also looks as though the ceiling has a coat of white plaster applied.

Hopefully, the windows will arrive by late March so I will be able see them once they are installed. After that it will really start to come together in a hurry. Once the front door goes in and the windows are installed, the house can be sealed up so that the interior door and cabinets can be installed and the house can be secured. It will soon be time to plan the next trip down for the final walk through.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Belize Time Abroad

Belize time seems to have affected our window company up here in the States, so our windows won't make the Feb. 21st container shipment, as we had hoped. Other factors factored in the decision to put the shipment off until March, but it won't set us back too much. Our plans won't have us moving in until June or July, so a month delay is not that big a deal. It will give us a chance to complete the paperwork and qualify for the QRP program so our household goods are shipped in tax and duty free.

We still plan to go to Belize in March, to get the tiles and pick out other finishing items but it may be more of a vacation than a construction visit. If that's the case, I will take Mischelle over to San Pedro and Caulker Caye to see the tourist side of Belize and maybe do some diving or snorkeling.

Several of the friends that I have met through my blog are now in Belize full time or they are there now checking out the progress that has been made on their homes. I get to learn from their experiences and gain from their knowledge. Donna, of "Our Belize Planning" has been updating her blog, from Belize. She and her husband, Jacques, have been down there for a couple of weeks now and are lamenting the return to the cold north next week. Our other friends, Rick and Dawn, are also in Belize, to check on the progress of their home in the Mayan Seaside. Pip and Jason have moved into their new home, next to ours. And since they have been down there for a couple of months now, they have already set their body clocks to Belize time. Also, my friend, Hipolito, whom I drove down with to Belize last year around this time, is flying down to visit his relatives and to pour the roof for his place near Corozal. It's quite a busy time down there and I wish we were there to meet everyone.

A new roadblock has creeped up on the construction site, that won't affect us at the moment, but has affected others in the community that are close to having their homes complete. It seems that the Belize building authorities (CBA) has now decided that if there is a stairway to the roof, inside or outside, then the entire roof must be counted as habitable space and will be counted towards the square footage of the entire house. Anything over 3000 sq. ft., and that includes patio and veranda areas, needs to have an approval by a certified Belizian structural engineer. And that, of course, adds a whole new layer of paperwork and rules. It just seems to get better and better. I just want to get the construction completed before anymore "new" rules come up. So for now, we are eliminating the staircase and just making it into a room with a 21 foot ceiling. Others unfortunately, have already built the staircase, and now must tear it down or face more paperwork and expenses.

Here in Camarillo, the remodeling of the master bathroom is complete. We will wait for our return from Belize before we put our house on the market. Time seems to be moving faster and June is not that far away.