Thursday, July 26, 2007

The Secret Door

The Phillips Renovation crew has nearly completed the interior wall framing and so has begun preparation for the siding and trim installation. They are installing new siding (hardi-plank) and cedar trim on the new portions of the house and also repairing the old trim where necessary. To start they tore off all of the aluminum soffits and the small section of vinyl siding which was on the side of the house. Once the vinyl siding was removed, we found an old doorway to the basement stairs which had been sealed in.

After pulling off the insulation, we found the original door was still in place!

Now that the aluminum soffits have been removed, we have a good idea how the house became a haven for wildlife. I found a half-dozen spots in the trim where it appears a hole had been chewed by a furry invader. This house had lots of nooks where a squirrel or raccoon could make a home.

We also discovered a section of the dental molding used on the original porch. We hope to talk to our crew about replicating that in the new porch section.

On a different note, I have to rant against Chase bank and banks in general. Our construction loan draw was deposited by me into our Chase account last Friday, July 19. Yesterday I received a letter stating that the bank is holding the majority of the deposit until July 31. It appears that a 1987 federal banking law permits a bank to hold funds for large deposits somewhere between 7 and 11 business days, but what is permitted and what is reasonable are often different. The check was drawn on a local bank, and in fact the Payor bank is directly next-door to the Chase branch we use. Given the technology used by banks, it is certain that the bank could verify the funds much quicker than the maximum hold period permitted by law. Banks process checks drawn on your account much quicker than in the past. Technology has sped up the process. But while the bank will debit your account right-quick for checks you write, it won't credit your account for deposits until it is required to do so by law.

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