What makes new home community site “good” is subjective. Everybody has a different opinion as to what features are considered good and of course the are the home builders building in the community known for building quality homes? …
I get this question all the time: How firm are the prices of new home upgrades? The short answer is that prices of new home upgrades are not very firm at all for the most part. Most home builders expect …
When you decide to build a new home you will need to interview home builders. Here are some basic questions to ask a home builder to get you started. Please add your own as well. Starter questions to ask a …
Using a do it yourself home building checklist to build your own home, can save you a lot of money. It also requires a lot of knowledge and understanding of construction. It is possible for almost any family of able …
There is no predetermined luxury home building cost. There is nothing intrinsically included in the definition of a luxury home that requires that it be expensive. Still, most luxury homes are costly. Size does not define luxury. There are true …
When you visit your home builder or contractor they will show you a custom home builder selection sheet. You will use the sheet to choose paint, floor coverings, cabinets, drawer pulls, countertops, appliances and everything else that will be a …
In constructing a checklist for building a house, we have combined the entire process into a list which may help you in planning and building your home. Building a home is a multifaceted process which involves creativity, planning, delegation and …
How long does it take to build a custom home? That all depends. But for the most part, building a custom home will take six months to a year. However the planning of your custom home should take quite a …
If you are wondering how to create a simpler more economical new home plan, or at least select one, you are not alone. Many people today are realizing that the excesses of the last half century are not sustainable. The …
Long ago, before there were building inspectors or home loans, our forefathers went out into the wilderness, and put up a log cabin in a day and didn’t even have to think about building a home on a budget. That …
Top New Home Building Materials Number One: Insulated Concrete Panels (ICP)
Insulated concrete panels are by far the most durable and energy efficient new home building materials on the market. There are some companies though that make slimmer panels. These are …
If you are even considering building a home, you need to learn how to get construction loan financing. With the proper preparation, getting a home loan can be amazingly easy. Without the right preparation it can be impossible. Here are …
Use this new home building process checklist to plan your home. It is important to build the house in your mind before you hire a contractor to physically build it. Reinforce your ideas with pictures and diagrams. Have a clear …
When looking at the past 50 years of green building history, we have to wonder, what is green home building, and where is it headed in the future? In the beginning green home building flew in the face of traditional …
Most people are not very clear on the question; “How do construction loans work?” It all seems very complicated but the following facts may help clarify the concepts involved. Practically speaking a construction loan actually involves the need for two …
Below I’ve put together three separate checklist for building a custom home. I hope you find them useful.
Checklist for Building a Custom Home: Concept
• Will this home be of architectural value?
• Is the design creative and artistic?
• Does the home …
The home builder selection process is very important when building a new home. Use the checklist below to research the builders and contractors that you are possibly interested in utilizing.
The Home Builder Selection Process: Make a Complete List
Obtain a list …
Number One Home Building Information Site
HomeBuildingSmart.com is a powerful resource that covers everything you need to know about new home building or buying a new home step-by-step. Everything you need to know about building a home from home building planning to selecting a home builder to actual building and much more.
What makes HomeBuildingSmart.com unique? HomeBuildingSmart.com ultimate purpose is to educate and help you make good smart home building decisions every step of the when searching new homes or building a new home and the home building process. From the very beginning of home building planning of building a new home all the way up to the day you get the keys to your new home. Everything you need to learn about home building or searching new homes can be found on our site and in our guide. Here are the steps we cover in detail in the free new home Home Building Steps Planning Guide:
Eight Benefits of building a new home versus Old
Seven benefits to stop procrastinating now when it comes to new home building
Four tips to keep you focused on your home building dreams
Getting your financial situation in order when building a new home
Different types of home builders
Collecting ideas related to home building
Building a home shapes and sizes
Assessing needs and wants when building a new home
Making compromises when searching new homes and buying a new home
Top home building tips for designing an energy efficient new home
Home building tips for building a healthy new home
Understanding mortgages for building your new home
Loans for home building/new construction
How to choose a construction lender when building a home
Initiating the new home building loan process
Home building new construction loan draw system
Should you be the general contractor when home building
Six tips for choosing a new home builder
What if you’re already working with a REALTOR to search for new homes?
Pricing and home building estimates
Preliminary home building plans
Getting estimates for building a home
Comparing home building estimates
Selecting a home builder to build your new home
Signing a home building contract with the home builder
Where does one look for buildable land or new homes
Forty-three home building lot/land selection considerations
Do I have to go with the home builder who owns the lot when building a new home?
Getting help finding a site when building a home
New home placement
Home building plans and approval
Making changes to the final home building plan
Making design choices when building a new home
Home building construction timeline
Moving from paper to permit to building a home
Survey and stakeout of your new home
New home building home excavating
Installing footings and pouring walls when building a home
Basement plumbing for new homes
Pouring basement and garage floors for new homes
Building home framing out your new home
Plumbing, heating/air conditioning and electrical, rough-ins for new homes
Building a home walks and driveways for new homes
Installing insulation when building a home
Home exterior when home building
New home building drywall
Painting of your new home
Installing tile, vinyl and hardwood floors in your new home
Trim, doors and closet shelves when home building
Cabinets, vanities and tops for new homes
Fixtures and final touches for new homes
Building a home and installing carpet in your new home
Landscaping your new home
Gutters and downspouts for new homes
Building a home final touch-ups
Clean up of your new home
Our guide is written to literally help you focus on what you need to know to make an educated informed smart home building decision and what to look for when searching new homes.
If you have not downloaded the guide do so right now directly above.
In addition to the New Home Steps Planning Guide, HomeBuildingSmart.com also provides detailed local guides around the United States and Canada are devoted to educating you on what’s going on in respective markets including listing new home builders, new communities, home building associations, real estate professionals, and neighborhoods. We strive to deliver home buyers information they need to become educated when building a home or buying or the home building process.
We also have hundreds of home building articles dedicated to providing you with detailed information related to particular aspect of buying or building a new home. Here are a couple example articles:
If you are wondering how to create a simpler more economical new home plan, or at least select one, you are not alone. Many people today are realizing that the excesses related to home building of the last half century are not sustainable. The goal of this article is to show you ways to save hundreds of thousands of dollars on costs while getting a better new home.
Durability and energy efficiency worth the extra money but it may actually cost less when home building. Thicker walls mean a more durable new home and also a more energy efficient new home. Thicker walls in home building can be obtained in two ways. One is to use 2”x 6” lumber for wall studs. This creates a far stronger home than the minimum 2”x 4” boards. It costs a little more, but thicker walls packed with innovative new closed cell insulation can produce a highly efficient thermal barrier in your new home. You can save over $100 a month on utilities in your new home.
Smaller new homes are more energy efficient, cost less to build and are easier to maintain. Building a smaller more compact new home which still feels spacious is a matter of design. It’s much more economical to build, cool and heat a small home. There are ways to maximize square footage, including great rooms, built in wall unit storage and decorator tips for expanding the view when home building. Avoid L’s and keep your home basically square to maximize on the savings when home building.
Save approximately $100,000 or more in interest, on a 15 year mortgage, over a 30 year one. Use a mortgage calculator to experiment with different amounts, and see the savings you can accrue on your new home. 15 year mortgages are amazing, and if you are choosing to build a smaller and more economical new home than you qualify for anyway, choosing a 15 year mortgage really makes sense. Saving money while building a small, energy efficient, durable new home and paying for it in 15 years rather than 30 can save you literally hundreds of thousands of dollars. Being able to save money on your payments leaves you with more money to enjoy life with. Paying off the mortgage sooner gives you more financial freedom and substantial home equity more quickly. Controlling your new home building plans and new home cost now, will give you more control over your life in the future.
Here’s the second article:
By looking at a new home construction timelines carefully, you can easily understand how construction costs work and what you are actually paying for, in terms of labor. Time tables vary so much because of the difference in home building sizes and extras. For the purpose of this discussion we are going to define the home first. Our home is a 1200 square foot quality home, built for maximum energy efficiency. We will discuss shell costs versus having a home builder complete the project.
Grading takes few man hours, but a lot of heavy equipment. You are basically renting this equipment and the operators for it, for one to three days in most cases. The cost of grading is usually between $1000 and $2000, for a level lot. A hilly or sloped lot can be considerably more, especially if it requires cut and fill when home building.
While building a foundation can be delayed due to weather and waiting for the concrete footings to dry, the actual time it takes using modern equipment is very short. There are not a lot of man hours involved in pouring a footing, and building a foundation. There is even less time involved in building a form and pouring a slab foundation. A basement may take a bit longer, and require excavation, but if your water table allows for it, a basement is still one of the cheapest ways to get a lot of square footage. You will end up paying around $4000 to $6000 for a slab or crawlspace foundation, for a small new home. This part of the project is usually completed in a month, but actual work time would not add up to more than a 40 hour work week for four guys in most cases.
Even though new home prices and construction costs for finished construction vary quite a bit from one area to another, new home shell prices are amazingly consistent at around $25 per square foot. This means that our shell will cost about $30,000. The shell of a new home usually consists of framing, exterior siding, sheathing, subfloor, windows, doors and roofing. It will take about two months to build the shell for a typical home building project.
Sometimes a shell price includes insulation and drywall, but in other cases it does not. In most cases if you want closed cell insulation it will cost a lot more. With insulated concrete panels your new home automatically comes with insulation and concrete interior walls which may be either dyed to suit your tastes or painted. While the shell building price is more than a stick built new home without insulation and drywall, when you consider the added cost of closed cell insulation, radiant barrier insulation and hanging drywall, the price varies very little. For the purpose of this article we will assume this is a stick built new home and that for $25 per square foot we are getting quality construction but not drywall and insulation. It is important to be sure of exactly what your shell will include, when you are buying just a building shell. Creating a shell can take several weeks or at most two months including weather delays.
It will take about three days to complete our closed cell insulation job. It will cost about $13,000 to insulate the new home with closed cell insulation, compared to fiberglass which would have cost $5000 for the same new home. However, the difference in utility costs due to the difference in R-value is over $1000 a year, and costs are rising. The closed cell will pay for itself in less than 8 years, and so obviously it’s worth it to pay the extra money.
So why does it take six months to a year to complete a new home, and why on earth will this new home cost $100,000 to $150,000 to complete. So far we’ve only totaled up about $51,000. From the outside our new home will look finished at this stage. On the inside it isn’t that pretty.
Expect to pay at least $5000 in labor and pipe, for the plumbing done by a licensed plumber through your home builder or contractor. It will be more in California Northern States and Hawaii, perhaps up to $10,000. You could do it yourself for much less if you have substantial experience in plumbing, but it is not be worth the risk if you are not. One leaky pipe can literally destroy your new home. The plumber will work on your job site on several different occasions putting in rough plumbing first, then installing bath fixtures and finally your kitchen sink. This work will be done in conjunction with other labor going on with your new home, but he will probably spend about 100 to 150 man hours on your home building job site.
The cost of a licensed electrician varies a lot in cost from state to state for new homes. Even for basic electrical wiring expect to pay $4 to $8 per square foot in an average economy but around $14 in California, and perhaps Hawaii, and a few inflated Northern Atlantic states as well. For our 1200 square foot new home our price for an electrician would be about $5000 to $10,000 with a maximum cost of nearly $17,000 in California. These costs absolutely cannot be avoided, nor is it sensible to just find someone cheaper. Improper wiring is a leading cause of fire, and can put your new home and your family at risk. It’s better to choose a highly recommended electrician with a long, local reputation for quality. State law requires that he be licensed, and your home builder or general contractor may select the electrician, but it still pays to check out the individual electrician’s reputation since his job is so important and expensive. The electrician will be at your new home at various times and his schedule will be similar to the plumbers. Expect your plumber to be at the job site for about 150 hours.
Our home building cost so far has suddenly diverged. Southern Atlantic price is $61,000 but our California price is $78,000. We are already up to $51 per square foot, and $65,000 for our California new home, but the good news is that our shell home people are now on a totally different track. Their labor costs end here. They will have to do the remainder of the work themselves.
Drywall material for home building is not expensive. The cost of drywall is around $6 per 4 by 8 foot sheet. Even with hardware, tape, putty and other accessories it’s still not that much. However it will cost an additional $30 a sheet or more to hang and finish the drywall. It can actually cost twice that in some areas and for elaborate features such as arch ways in most areas. Let’s say our new home requires 60 sheets of drywall. That means that our drywall material will cost $360 plus fasteners, so all together it could cost an even $400, but labor is $1,800, making that drywall job cost $2,200. On top of this your home builder or contractor may take up to 30 percent profit margin. It’s only fair because he has to oversee this time consuming job. That is another $660 dollars though. So now the drywall will cost you $2,860 for your new home. Just double that price for California. The only alternative is to have the home builder or contractor stop with a shell, and hang the drywall yourself in your new home. You’d only pay $400. It all depends on your contract and the decision should be based on how much your time is worth as well, because drywall is time consuming, and even more so if you are not accustomed to doing it.
Paint, Wallpaper and cabinetry are all the same story when it comes to home building. It costs a little for materials, and a lot for installation. This is not true of carpet. Carpet installation is very reasonable in most cases, but ceramic and Italian tile are very expensive to install. All the paint, wall paper and cabinetry are painstaking to install, and can take a long time. Carpet can be installed in half a day per room, so that’s why the labor is not so much.
The interior of your new home is very labor intensive. It is a huge headache for the general contractor or home builder, who must choreograph all these workmen so that they are not in each other’s way. Actually the general contractor will make about 30 percent of the cost of your home, but this long period of time, which will be a minimum of four months between shell, and completion, amounts to a lot of hard work and planning. Most contractors do not mind building a shell. It cuts down on their profit, but also on the amount of the work they are doing.
So there you have it. Enjoy the home building guides and good luck in your new home building. For more detailed home building information visit ehomebuilding.com.