|Custom Home Building Process
Definition: A Custom Home Builder constructs a one-of-a-kind home that is designed for a specific client and for a particular location. The Custom Home Builder may use plans created by an architect or by a professional home designer. Some Custom Home Builders also offer professional design services. Because each house is unique, Custom Home Builders generally construct only a few homes a year.
In most cases, Custom Home Builders construct on land the home buyer already owns. However, some Custom Builders will provide the building lot.
Our Design Process:
All projects starts with a clear understanding of the budget for the home.
Our clients typically visits the showrooms of our key suppliers to aid in the
selection of finish items such as heating & cooling equipment, appliances,
plumbing fixtures, lighting, flooring, cabinetry, windows, trims and doors,
exterior finishes, etc.
We work with a couple of talented Architects. Each has unique talents and style.
Recommended Custom Home Checklist!
The following is a checklist designed to make the process more productive. This process can be an exciting but also challenging experience.
Step #1 Choose a Builder
There are many residential builders out there, but not all of them are capable of delivering the home you like and the communication you desire. You should do some homework before you choose a home building partner. Drive around your area and note the new home you like, and find out who built that home. When you meet with potential builders, ask how long they've been building custom homes in the area, and ask about their subcontractor base (are they broad and specialized in custom homes). Also, equally important, as the home owner, present your financial expectations to the builder and make sure they are willing to meet these expectations. Finally, make sure to ask for references, and follow up on them. Remember, price is not the only factor in choosing a builder. For instance, with Low/Mid/High quotes, the safest is the Mid price of overall quotes. Also, you need a builder who will give you attention to details, plus quality materials coupled with best-in-class service.
Step #2 Initial Meeting
In this phase we get to know more about you and your lifestyle needs. We want your new home to exceed all of your expectations, so we want to take this time to ensure that we understand all your exact requirements.
Step #3 Your Home Site
Some of our clients have already acquired a home site, while others choose from one of our available lots. We can also assist you in locating the perfect home site based upon various factors including location, home site size, price point and school district.
Once a home site has been selected, we can then sit down with you and fill out an entire set of specifications which allows us to come up with a preliminary budget. Once we have a budget number established it is a good idea to check on financing. We have several lenders and will match you up with one to fit your needs. They can usually pre-qualify you within a couple of days.
Step #4 Design Options and Selection
Review and select design options; establish the overall look and layout of the house then sign the building contract to start the process.
At this stage, it is time to select the house style, size, layout and price from the builder's selections that best fit your lifestyle and financial needs. It is also important at this time to decide what optional features are necessary and affordable now, and what items could be done later. Once these important decisions have been made and agreed upon between owner and builder, it's time to get the pen out and sign the building agreement.
Step #5 Pre-Construction.
Once you approve the architectural plans and the budget pricing, we will then be ready to finalize the contract price. The contract will include the specifications, time to complete the home, and the contracted price.
There are several items that need to occur before construction can begin:
- Ensure that financing for the project has been secured
- Acquire necessary building permits
- Have design approved by the Architectural Control Committee (if applicable)
- Initial phase Selections - These are the minimum selections that must be made prior to construction.
Step #6 Ready to Submit for the Loan Application
When building a home, you have two financing options: you can apply for a construction loan, which automatically converts to a mortgage when the house is completed, or you can apply for a turnkey loan, which is pre-approved at the start of the building process, then automatically converts to a standard mortgage when the house is completed. The advantage of a construction loan is that you can lock into a mortgage rate when you apply for the loan. With a turnkey loan, the mortgage rate is decided when the mortgage is closed, at the end of the building process. Many people prefer to lock into a rate early rather than risk the rise of rates at the time the mortgage kicks in.
Step #7 Interior Designers
Work with interior designer to customize design options to your specifications.
Now it is time to focus on the interior details within the negotiated overall budgets, such as the cabinetry and finishes. Make sure you communicate with the designer and builder early and often. To help the designer and builder understand the look you desire to achieve, prepare a collection of pictures of other homes and rooms that may show the style you like.
Step #8 Construction Process
At this point, the home owner takes a breather while the builder gets busy. For the next six to nine months, the house will be constructed. Our team will be in constant communication with you throughout the construction process. The Selections are a very important piece of the construction process. We will set up a Selection Schedule which will include a timetable for when certain Selections are due. The timeliness of these Selections is imperative so that the construction process is not disrupted. Communicate with your builder beforehand to determine the best times to check on the progress of the building. You are encouraged to review on-going progress with your builder.
Step #9 Notify the Utilities
Contacts your utility companies - gas, electric, water, cable, telephone - and let them know of the construction process so they can prepare for underground connection.
Step #10 Establish the Closing Date and Prepare Closing Documents
Step #11 Conduct the Pre-Closing Walkthrough Inspection
Prior to completion of your home, we will perform a final walkthrough with you to ensure that the level of craftsmanship meets your expectations. Additionally, all of our homes come with a warranty. We take great pride in our homes and want you and your family to be as proud of your new home as we are.
Step #12 Conduct Final Closing and Make Final Payment to Builder
Once the builder has received the certificate of occupancy, it's time to take ownership of the house. If you've applied for a turnkey loan, the final step is to have the closing, in which the mortgage papers are signed and the payment to the builder is made. If you went the construction loan route, upon receiving a copy of the certificate of occupancy from the builder, the lender releases the final payment (typically 3%-5% of the total) and the home is ready to occupy.
Step #13 Ready to Move In!