I was on a mission and took six months developing the Lifetime Home Survey (LTHS), which was born of a single negative comment following a post class, feedback form. Without ever knowing his name, I still picture the disgruntled attendee sitting near the front with arms crossed, an engineering type who frowned the entire presentation. I knew I wasn't delivering what he wanted to hear.
His comment? "Didn't give specific measurements!" Jeez, I purposely avoided getting technical to reduce the likelihood of audience slumber; but, after reading Mr. Unhappy's feedback, I vowed, "Metrics you want, measurements thou shall get!"
Call me obsessive compulsive but, with Mr. Unhappy's scowl burned into my mind, what began as a simple checklist grew (out of control?) into a whole house assessment. I referenced 17 documents and architect teammate Charles Hendricks proofread the final product, what we believe to be THE most comprehensive Universal Design home assessment resource currently available on the web.
Our goal? Making your home life easier, as well as safer, healthier, comfortable and convenient through specific guidance for every area of the home inside and outside. The first two pages, which can be printed or emailed separately, are designed to standalone as a general summary, easily shared, whereas the full version easily scares! ;>)
While I doubt anyone not as O.C.D as me reviews entirely the whole thing, the survey can be used as a wish list of features/benefits for a "last move" or "dream home", both building custom new or remodeling. Or just refer to a specific area of your property, the full assessment is very detailed and can be used in parts, developed for you to review specific rooms and areas of your entire property as you're making changes. For example, before any repairs or improvements (including your yard, garden or driveway), scan the latest version of the survey to assess what can be upgraded to boost efficiency and accessibility. (Chances are doing so won't cost extra as it'll affect more HOW you're doing something, the approach and method, instead of what you're changing or adding.)
Lastly, building science is changing fast due to innovation and increased competition so refer back often and note the date at the top of the first page to ensure you have the most recent version. This is a living document that I will review and edit regularly to include new methods, features and products.
Email me questions, comments or feedback by referencing the line number per the latest revision. (First thing I will confirm we're both referencing the same dated survey or the line numbers could be off as I add and delete things.) I will alert about updates via this blog, our weekly newsletter, The Current, and our Facebook fan page.
Please forward to those you care about as I proudly share with you BuilderFish's Lifetime Home Survey. And thank you Mr. Unhappy for making me do this, BuilderFish will improve people's lives as a consequence.
Download a PDF of the full and mini-versions by clicking the respective links at this page.
(ALERT: Anything within the PDFs with a blue underline or dot-com is a link. Hover your mouse pointer over it and you should see a text box with the web address. Simply click the text and your browser will take you to that site for more information. Click the green title header at the top of the PDF to go to the dedicated page for the Lifetime Home Survey. Email me if you're having problems and I'll forward as PDF attachments.)