Essential Factors to Consider in the Custom Home Building Process
Building a custom home is an exciting opportunity to fashion the ideal home. However, it can also be challenging when you need a clear project vision.
It’s important to hire a builder that you trust and feel comfortable communicating with. This will help to minimize miscommunications that can lead to costly mistakes and delays.
A custom home is a one-of-a-kind residence designed by an architect for a specific client. The builder works with you from preliminary plans through preconstruction to bring your ideas to life.
Good design is all about the details. When light fixtures align with window frames, when drywall terminates into a stone wall with a thin shadow reveal – these are the little things that make a custom home stand out.
In a custom-built home, space and sequences fit your family’s routine, how you entertain, and what you need to store. Appropriate adjacencies are important, too – mudrooms and garages are located near each other to minimize trips. Kitchens are sized for how you cook and dine, while bedrooms are designed for the storage your family will need.
On the other hand, spec homes are built by builders to appeal to a broad audience of prospective homeowners and may be located in a housing development. These homes are often equipped with popular selections during construction, but these features won’t necessarily work with your lifestyle in the long run.
It takes more than four walls and a roof to building a house, and that’s why it pays to budget for a wide variety of additional costs before construction begins. For example, homeowners should set aside at least 5%-10% of their land plus construction costs for items like decor, furniture and landscaping, which is an expense that needs to be addressed.
Once you’ve settled on your design, work with your general contractor to develop a comprehensive building plan and determine how much wiggle room there is in your budget. A good general contractor will be honest with you and help you prioritize your ideas, balancing them against zoning, timeframe, land constraints and other realities of the custom home building process.
Remember also to factor in soft costs that aren’t a part of your direct construction costs, such as the paperwork/ fees associated with procuring your land and movers for your furniture. You should also understand that you’ll likely have to pay for a new mortgage if you still need to be arranged during the building process.
When you’ve finalized your design, the next step is to review and approve the construction drawings. This process can take time as you consider every option and fine-tune your design. Be bold, ask questions, and make modifications as needed. This is a major investment; you want to ensure your design meets your needs.
It’s also the right time to settle on a budget. Working with your builder to determine what is financially feasible and realistic for you is best. This will help you prioritize your desires, which can help keep you from building beyond your budget. Additionally, establishing a budget early allows you to confidently begin interior selections, knowing you have the funds for the items most important to you. Many custom home builders have long-standing relationships with contractors and can often pre-select materials for you to reduce delays due to product shortages or scheduling issues.
A custom home build starts with the land and the foundation. A professional specializing in new construction will perform local market research and survey the ground to ensure it’s suitable for a custom house. They also obtain the necessary permits. This can be time-consuming and costly if the land has an existing structure that needs to be removed or altered.
The next step is to develop the floor plan, a blueprint for your future living space. During this process, you’ll consider your home’s height, number of rooms, and how each room flows into the next. Consider adding a basement or garage.
Once you’ve established your floor plan, look at the different architectural styles that appeal to you and how they fit your climate, location, and neighborhood. A quality custom builder will help you incorporate a cohesive style from inside to outside with repeating details and materials that talk to each other.