Many people searching for a new home consider buying an existing home versus building a custom home. While building a home doesn’t offer the same move-in-ready convenience of buying a house, building leads to a level of satisfaction that can’t be achieved through buying an existing home.
Before deciding to build, there are many factors to consider such as needing land, finding an architect to draw plans, hiring a builder, and filing for multiple permits and inspections. During construction, you will need to hire an electrician, plumber, and HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning) Technician. You’ll also need to consider additional systems such as septic vs. sewer and well vs. municipal water. Additionally, building a home takes time.
The primary advantage to building is that you’re more likely to get exactly what you want, which can be enough incentive for many who consider building. New homes are likely more cost-effective than comparably-sized preexisting homes: new building materials are more durable, made of less toxic components, and insulate better than materials of the past. New codes require appliances to be more energy-efficient, which can save you money on your utility bills each month while lessening environmental impact compared to old homes.
The biggest drawbacks to building a house tend to be the higher costs and longer time frame, both of which can increase during the process. Mitigate budget and timeline risks by working with an experienced and reputable builder, and have a solid contract in place. Consider a lump sum contract, which specifies a fixed price for construction, putting the risk of cost overruns on the builder instead of the buyer. Include a specific construction timeline in your contract, and determine who your primary contact will be for the duration of the project: it’s important to maintain good communication with your builder and make sure you are happy with the design and specifications before the build begins.
Even if you’re set on building, you may later decide an existing home is a better fit. Regardless, working with a qualified and experienced professional–whether that’s a real estate agent or a general contractor–can help ensure the process goes as smoothly as possible.
If you’re considering building in our area, stop by our office or give us a call. We’ve worked with many of the area contractors, builders, and designers, and can assist you in finding land to build your dream home.