Building and Remodeling During Covid

We have faced the most unique challenge in this build. One that we have not yet seen in other builds or remodels. Covid Shutdowns. Fortunately, we made it far enough into the build before this became an issue in the big stages like framing. This can potentially cause a roadblock for you now, though. And, no one likes hiccups that slow down the build process. But, that’s okay because I am here to help you plan ahead and find alternatives!

For the first several months of our build, construction and supply houses operated like normal and there were no issues finding contractors or supplies. However, a shift has happened over the past couple months that is causing issues. Due to the shutdowns, manufacturers have not been building the stock they would normally have available. Also, distribution is shut down for most of the vendors I have selected. I am finding this in appliances, bathtubs, and doorknobs, as well as lumber. It is getting harder to find items that won’t take months to come in! Talk about a slow down!!

My tips to you:

  • Plan much farther ahead than you expect.
  • Shop places you don’t normally shop.
  • Have a plan A, plan B, plan C… and D, E, F…
  • See what can be added after the build. Some things like backslashes and trim outs are not necessary to have right off the bat, so you can wait for them to come in.

Ready to see some awesome finds that I only found because Covid had slowed, or even stopped, my normal places to shop. I will even share some of my purchase links so you can grab my amazing finds for your new build or remodel. {Some of the links may be affiliate links which will earn me something at no extra cost to you. Thank you, friends, if you shop my links!}

First off, finding the appliances I had originally picked out became a thorn in my side. I had picked out certain appliances to give to my cabinet makers for the custom cutouts. Some of these appliances were delayed or even back stocked by the time I was ready to purchase them. This issue just kept growing and getting worse through July and August. The first thing I noticed I couldn’t find was the 36″ gas cooktop I had picked out. It was going to take many weeks to come in, but my plumber needed it within a week. That’s when Amazon popped in my head. I had never bought appliances off there, but I buy everything else under the Sun from them! Sure enough, they had my exact gas cooktop and a bit cheaper! Guess what? It arrived within a few days! Hallelujah, no slow down there!!

The next thing to go wrong was finding my dream bathtub. Cue the tears. I had this beautiful jetted clawfoot tub picked out for months and months. I should have just bought it when I found it. But, I was worried it would get damaged sitting on the job site that long. I looked everywhere. Lowes, Home Depot, online stores, plumbing stores. No one could find my jetted tub (except one online seller who charged $400 to return it if it didn’t fit right). I called everyone in the area. I looked online. I wish I would have found this one. It would have been perfect, and at an amazing price! Before I saw it, I found another one. I called around, though, and found a place advertising their sales floor on the FB marketplace. They had one white floor model clawfoot tub, and one brand new in box RED clawfoot tub. I got the dimensions and had my husband go grab it after work. The good news is, bright red matches our front door! HAHA Would not have been my first choice, but it does have some bold charm!

Of course, we needed to accessorize our tub with that old country farmhouse style that we love so much. I found the most amazing antique-style faucet set with a hand shower at a fraction of the cost that the plumbing warehouses sell these for!! My plumber even approved of the look and quality! He said, “How much did you pay for this?” HEHE I love finding great quality at a bargain. It makes my heart happy and gives the exact feel I was looking for. Amazon even had a really pretty drain and overflow pipe to match!

To keep in line with the charming farmhouse design, I ordered lovely egg shaped door knobs for our farmhouse at Lowes. To no fault of their own, their vendor’s distribution was shut down. So my knobs got delayed, and delayed, and then never arrived. I again hopped on my good old faithful Amazon account and found exactly what I wanted and they came in withing a few days!!! Now, I did not get my amazing contractor discount that I get using the Lowe’s Pro Desk, but it all worked out in the end. I’m happy to get the knobs I wanted.

And, for one of the most recent issue, Lowes Pro Desk came to the rescue. My fridge, which I spent hours picking out, was delayed, then back stocked, then out of stock. The super helpful pro desk guy spent almost a week with me finding the perfect replacement. He did all the leg work, and found exactly what I needed! I was, of course, being picky… I wanted a french door with lots of space and good storage layout, but also at a counter-depth size. Let me tell you, there are not many options with those specifics. But, he did it. He found me a great fridge was delivered that same week!

Along the appliance lines, we also couldn’t get our washer and dryer since it had a 2 month lead time!! Here is what I discovered: While trying to decided how long I could logistically wait on a washer and dryer, I noticed the employees setting out a whole row of washers and dryers. Ready for this miracle? 🙂 They had just set out the EXACT washer I had picked out! It had a teeny tiny scratch/dent on the bottom of the front, so the person who had ordered it did not want it any more. It was so small, it took me several minutes to find it!! Guess what? I got it for HALF price! We already tried it out at home and it works beautifully. The appliance person looked it up to see if any nearby stores had the dryer in stock so I wouldn’t have to order it and wait 2 months. She found two in the next town over, so I called their pro desk to pay over the phone and set up delivery for the NEXT DAY!! What a win! Side note: If you’re a builder or remodeler, get a Contractor Account with the Lowe’s Pro Desk. It saves you money like you wouldn’t believe with their contractor discounts, and they are sooooo helpful in getting you exactly what you need.

And, for the last little tidbit of Covid challenges, LUMBER. Lumber is a huge part of a build or remodel. You need it for both the framing and the finish out! What I am hearing is that there is a lumber shortage due to the Spring Covid shut downs. They had to stop production which got them behind in stock. What we bought through Spring and early Summer was lumber that had been produced in January. Now, lumber production is at least a month behind and can’t catch back up. We have seen lumber prices double on some items. Ouch! Thankfully we finished our framing before Covid was even a thing, but it has caused some issues finding wood and trim we wanted for finish out. Again, this is where planning ahead and calling around will help. Call all the lumber yards, big and small, to see what you can find!

I hope this helps you find what you need for your new build or remodel!! It was stressful at first, but thanks to my Amazon finds and the Lowes Pro Desk, I was able to get the look I wanted for our new farmhouse!

Happy Building and Remodeling, friends!


Published by Elementaryali

Creating teaching resources for a fun and engaging learning environment!

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