Observations and Thoughts

After living here for 13 years, what would we change if we could go back in time? That is, how could this house be better?


Low-voltage power to all the windows to allow for powered window coverings.

Entry Way

Electrical outlet in floor next to front window for holiday decorations.-

Powder Room

A wall-hung toilet would make it much easier to clean.

A quieter fan (instead of the $13 one) would be an improvement.

An electrical outlet behind the toilet for a washlet.


The light is not bright enough and is too enclosed to put in higher wattage bulbs. We replaced it with a 90-watt, 6000 lumen Tech Lighting Timbre Linear Suspension chandelier.

We had another Ethernet jack installed on the south wall. Put the CenturyLink modem in the mechanical room. then, we went to Wi-Fi.


A cable chase behind the fireplace would be good to allow speakers on either side.

Another set of GU-10 pot lights near the fireplace would allow a lit “walkway”. The existing lights would be moved south by a foot or so.


The window wall had MIRO hardware (aluminium) which had to be replaced with ICON handles (316 stainless steel) for $300. And, the door handle failed after 2 years and had to be replaced for $350.

We had 3M Prestige 50 window film installed on the window wall for $851.


We installed NON lighting (IKEA) above the cabinets and a remote switch for $60.
Pull out shelves in the lower cabinets would be a huge improvement.
The original fridge stuck out too far and we replaced it with a “counter depth” fridge. Which still sticks out too far.
Microwave/exhaust fan above range is almost useless for venting fumes. We plan to replace it with a proper (400+ CFM) vent hood.

In 2017, we renovated the south wall of the kitchen. We:

  • Moved the new Sub-Zero refrigerator to the west end.
  • Moved the pantry to the east end and gave it 7 shelves instead of 5. While narrower, only lost 3% of the storage capacity.
  • Replaced the microwave with a Miele speed oven.
  • Replaced the dual-fuel range with a Wolf gas hob and a Miele convection oven.
  • Added a Sub-Zero wine cooler.
  • Installed all new lighting.

We replaced the air switch for the lights with a dishwashing detergent dispenser.

The builder installed the lowest end Bosch Acenta dishwasher. We replaced it with a Miele dishwasher which is super quiet.

The builder-installed Insinkerator Badger 5 garbage disposal was crap. It is the lowest-end model. We replaced it after 3 years with an Insinkerator Compact Evolution which is more powerful and much quieter.

Reading Room (West Bedroom)

Light in the closet.

Speakers in the ceiling would be nice.

The small volume for ceiling fan light only allows CFLs. Not true now that LEDs have improved.

Bathroom (shared)

A quieter fan (instead of the $13 one) would be an improvement.

An electrical outlet near the toilet would make installing a washlet trivial.

Only one towel bar was installed which would be inadequate if this bathroom were used for bathing.

Middle Bedroom

Light in closet.

A better ceiling light. The fan is not necessary.

Laundry Closet

Built in shelves on the side were installed by the builder. That meant that the washer and dryer would not fit properly. We paid $100 to have them ripped out and replaced with overhead shelves.

The original dryer vent hose installation was botched. We solved the problem after 7 years with a Miele condensing heat pump dryer so the vent is not needed.

Master Bedroom

We replaced the cheap fan with a BigAss Fan.

Master Bath

The original fan/duct was 3-inch 50cfm. The bath volume requires a 117cfm fan. We had the fan/duct replaced with a 4-inch 100cfm model. We should have spent the extra money for a quieter fan. As part of the hailstorm-induced roof repair, we replaced the fan with with a 6-inch 150cfm WhisperQuiet one.

We spent $333 to have the after-market version of EnduroShield protective glass coating installed on the shower glass. The factory-installed version is the same price and has a longer warranty.

We replaced the fan switch with a timer for $32.

Tub is beautiful, but too small at 63-inches.

A wall-hung toilet would make it much easier to clean.

An electrical outlet on the north wall near the shower would make installing a towel warmer much easier. We installed one and a Runtal Versus towel warmer.

An electrical outlet near the toilet would make installing a washlet trivial. We installed one and then a Toto Nexus toilet with a S500e Washlet+.

Master Closet


Media Room (Basement)


Basement Bathroom

A quieter fan (instead of the $13 one) would be an improvement.

Only one towel bar was installed which is inadequate when you have guests. We spent $50 to install another one.

Basement bedroom


Mechanical Room

We installed a backup sump pump and battery backup for $900.

The single light bulb was inadequate and we spent $40 installing more lights.



We would heat the sidewalk/entrance concrete that lies in permanent shadow during the Winter.


Our storage shelf is 4-feet deep. Six would be better. Also, the fiber board shelf surface was installed rough side up so we spent $90 to cover it with Masonite.


The builder’s standard was builder’s standard. We spent $7000 to install a planter in patio area, low-voltage lighting, 3 trees, and many shrubs. We installed a shared patio in the front for $4000.

In 2022 we replaced all the turf with Colorado native plants. Subsurfacce irrigation. Rainbird Root Watering Systems for the trees.




We stained the fence to extend its life.


The outdoor faucet in the front should be 3 to 6 inches higher above the ground level.

The electrical outlet boxes are too small when you try to plug in a GFI plug attached to a power washer.