When it comes to custom home building advice, the best advice is to know what you want, and to be determined to get it. That may sound simple but it is not what most people do. This custom home building advice will cover the five most common mistakes people when building a new custom home.
Custom Home Building Advice Mistake #1: Doesn’t Know About Construction
It is a huge mistake to go to ask a home builder or contractor to build a home, without knowing exactly what you are asking for. Vague descriptions of floor plans and interior design are not going to express to a building contractor what you want. Download our 98 page guide at the top right. It is a good start to your research. Continue to research building techniques, materials and procedures. Be sure to read extensively about green materials, traditional framing and the latest in insulation. Become familiar with different types of lumber, and sheathing materials. Make sure you have a strong understanding of all aspects of home building, and have considered all the possibilities before telling a building contractor what you want.
It is very important that you spend time planning your new home from the ground up. Make lists of ideas you want to incorporate in your home. Use photos on line to illustrate things you like. Study kitchen layouts and decide where you want everything. Come up with a tentative floor plan, and above all know which type of building materials you prefer. Be sure to discuss materials with the contractor. Explain that you want a sturdy well insulated home, but beyond that, be able to specify sheathing materials and the thickness of wall studs. Make sure that all the quotes for your new home are specific and include the same standard of quality in building materials.
Research the local contractors completely. Investigate them online and inquire among the building community, by speaking with subcontractors, building inspectors, Realtors, and loan officers. Most of these people know which builders have the best reputation for the type of home you want. Visit open houses in the area and ask who built each home. Examine the home carefully, including taking a peek into the basement or crawlspace to see the floor joists. Also ask to see the attic. Look for any spot that isn’t covered by sheetrock so you can observe the wall studs, rafters, and floor joists whenever possible. Pay attention as you walk across the floor to check for squeaks or unlevel spots. Visit home construction sites, if possible.
Finally, lowest price isn’t the only thing to consider. Make sure your bids are for equal quality and consider which contractors are most experienced. Also consider how easy it is to communicate with the builder. Is he accessible and does he listen and answer your questions.
It is amazing how many people do not visit the construction site during construction. You should visit at least once a week, if only for half an hour to insure that the right materials are being used and that everything is being installed properly. Always be friendly with the crew. It is a nice idea to bring a cooler of cold bottled water and other drinks to the site. If you have questions about construction it is fine to ask the crew, but if you have concerns or problems with the materials or the way things are shaping up, communicate that directly with the contractor. Always be nice to the crew.
While there are things which might be in your original design that may not end up being affordable, if something is important, don’t give it up. Save the money elsewhere. Never compromise on the structure itself. Triple glazed windows and good insulation are worth the extra money.
Be there when joists are put in, when the walls go up, and when windows are installed to insure they are put in correctly. Make sure that lumber, sheathing, floor joists, and rafters or trusses are more than just adequate. It is easy to change the carpets, the counter tops, or other shiny interior stuff later, but you only get one chance to get a sturdy house. There will be no chance to brace it up better later.
Be sure to research everything completely, know what you want, find the right man for the job, and then check to make sure your desires are being carried out properly. Don’t compromise on the important things, and you will get the home you want. Knowing what you want, and making sure you get it are the two best custom home building advice tips there are.