Are you in the process of building a new home? Constructing a house from the ground up can be a very exciting time. It can also be stressful as you attempt to make sure that every detail is right.
For a home contractor, this is a routine process. That is precisely why you should be involved– without being overbearing or indecisive. Building a dream home requires your active engagement and involvement in the process every step of the way. Constructing a home must be an active process, even if you’re making the decisions and not actually building it.
Hoping it all works out without being hands-on is absurd. Don’t leave your home construction contractor to make decisions because you’re unavailable; you run the risk of having things turn out other than you pictured.
Today we are talking about the top five things you need to know when building a new home. If you’re going to go to all of the effort and want to make sure it’s exactly as you envision, you should get involved and also read on to find out more.
1. Hire a builder or a contractor with a good reputation.
You want your builder or contractor to have a good reputation. More than that, ideally you want a referral from someone you trust. There are tons of builders and contractors out there. You can afford to be choosy. If you don’t like the quotes you get from someone or you have a strange feeling, don’t go with them. Don’t rush your choice. Find out online and use certified builders that you can trust.
2. Figure out your budget before.
Just like a wedding, not having a budget means that you risk not having any limits or boundaries for yourself. If you are setting the budget number at a certain amount, then at least you know not to go over it (or try your best to avoid it).
The best thing you can do is to run the numbers BEFORE you make any plans to build. You’ve got to figure out what everything is going to cost and whether you can afford to build the house you really want. You don’t want to order certain things and then find out hey, construction costs are more than you thought. That stone is more than you thought. You don’t have it in the budget.
You can use cost to build tools online or just write down the numbers of what you think you’ll need one by one. You might be able to build the home you want– but you’re going to have to do some accounting and figure out how much you have to work with first.
3. Balance specialized with resale value.
One huge mistake that home builders make is to make it THEIR home. Everything is hopelessly personalized and this has major consequences for resale. Even if you believe that this is your forever home, build it like it isn’t.
This can often come down to personal style and interior or exterior design. Something stylish keeps that resale value intact. You want people to be able to envision themselves living there and wanting to match that sales price because there’s competition to live there!
4. Consider your home’s placement and any green aspects you want in it.
If you want sunlight to come into your home, then you need to design the home to be situated that way. An architect can help you figure out how to orient your home to face south in this case. If you want to be energy efficient, you’ve got to figure that out now before building starts. Research what you’d like to do. Even if in the end you only want green appliances, then that’s what you can do.
5. Remember the punch list.
This is the list that is created at the end of construction and will detail what needs to still be done or repaired still. Your contractor will work with you to make this list before closing when you do the final walkthrough. Don’t forget to take notes when you do your walkthroughs. A real estate agent or lawyer can also help you with the list as they have an eye for flaws through experience.
Sort the problems into two categories, reasonable and unreasonable flaws. Reasonable flaws are within tolerances of building construction, while unreasonable flaws must be fixed. Once fixed, your home will be in substantial completion and able to be occupied. You should always do one last walkthrough to make sure the punch list tasks are completed. Put the money for completion of the list in escrow and you can move into your home and the builder must still require the list items.