Building your own home is an exciting and often daunting experience, but it’s also a very routine job for your builder. This is why it is vital to play an active part in every aspect of the custom homes building process to make sure that you end up with a home that is precisely what you want.
You cannot be a passive participant when it comes to designing and building your own home, as there are so many decisions that need to be made by you. If you can’t or do not want to make these choices, the builder will have to, and you risk having a home that does not turn out exactly how you envisioned it or costs more than you had budgeted for.
Here, we look at five things that you need to think about and understand when it comes to building your own home.
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Crunch the numbers
Before you begin building your own home, run a few numbers to decide whether you can afford to build it. Most building plans have a costing tool or service, usually for a small fee, to give you an accurate estimation of the construction costs.
After you have established that you can afford to build the house that you want — buy your house plan and head to the bank to arrange the financing. Bear in mind that house building loans are very different from standard mortgage financing. You will need a line of credit for home construction that will be used to pay for subcontractors and vendors that conduct work and supply the materials. After your house is finished, you will need a residential mortgage to pay off the construction.
Check out your builder
There are plenty of builders out there, but not all of them are good enough to take on such an important job. Undertake some research and detective work to find out which builders have the best reputation. You should also look at reviews and recommendations online as well as asking family and friends. You can also look at builders who are members of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB).
Think about the resale
No matter how much you love the house that you are designing and building, it is unlikely to be the last home that you will ever buy. Knowing that, you should be mindful of its potential value for resale. Do not add too many features that mean that you end up overpricing it for the neigborhood and making it hard, or almost impossible to sell. Think about whether the features you are considering adding are likely to appeal to others.
Create a punch list
The final stage of the building process is to go over the “punch list.” This is a list generated at the end of the building that shows what still needs to be completed or what needs to be improved on the new building. The list will be created by you and your contractor a week or so before you close the project as you go on your final walkthrough.