The architect called Tuesday with some positive news. He had spoken to both the building department and the conservation authority about our situation. He is confident that we will be able to obtain the necessary variance for the addition and detached garage. The next step is to work on a detailed site plan. We will need to take that to the adjustment committee, where our neighbors could conceivably oppose the plans.
Considering those same neighbors stood by while the previous owner built a completely illegal addition, that shouldn’t be a problem. I would hope that they would appreciate that we are trying to improve our property. Not only will it raise their property values but they will have something a little more aesthetically pleasing to look at.
I am a little concerned about starting the process already, considering we have only saved about a third of our garage budget. Remember, our original plan, which is now completely off the table, was to just build the garage first, and then build the addition in a few years. Now we are talking about doing everything at once, which means we have saved under 10% of the entire budget. The soonest I see us putting a shovel in the ground is about five years. If we get the approvals now, we would have to apply for extensions every year.
The last thing I want to do is go deeply into debt or take on a larger mortgage to pay for this construction. Staying disciplined will be a bit of a challenge once the plans are on paper. No doubt I will be tempted to make it happen sooner than we can afford.