On the surface, building your dream home seems like it should be a delightful experience. After all, there are countless opportunities to make choices and create a home that is a perfect fit for your needs and lifestyle. Although that level of control can be liberating and exciting, it also tends to be stressful. Fortunately, experienced home builders recognize this reality and are willing to offer their expertise to smooth your path. How can you capitalize on the opportunity? Keep these tips for working with a custom home builder in mind.
Tips for Working with a Custom Home Builder
A custom home builder constructs one-of-a-kind homes. Unlike a production builder, who may offer a limited menu of options as they build entire communities, a custom home builder is focused on creating a home that is truly unique (source). Working with a custom home builder gives you a chance to have a huge amount of input, so it’s important to foster a good working relationship with your builder. Use these tips for help:
1. Choose a Builder You Can Trust
Selecting a reputable, trustworthy professional makes it far easier to build a positive relationship. That’s why HGTV recommends that you do your research before signing a contract with a builder. Ask for recommendations and check reviews. Take the time to visit some of the builder’s completed projects and talk with their owners about their homes and the homebuilding experience. Check the builder’s credentials. Don’t forget to verify that their finances are in good shape and that they have strong relationships with vendors and subcontractors. Finally, ask lots of questions, and consider the answers that you receive carefully. Remember, vetting your builder isn’t being rude. It’s simply confirming that they have the skills and resources needed to do the job properly.
2. Know Your Budget
Before meeting with your builder to discuss the project, determine how much you’re willing to spend (source). It’s also a good idea to find out the average cost of building a home in your area. Having a budget in mind from the beginning and understanding what you should expect to pay helps to set the parameters for the project and reduces sticker shock and disappointment. With that said, don’t fall into the trap of letting the final price be the determining factor. Look for experience, quality, and value; don’t simply select the contractor who provides the lowest bid.
3. Build for the Future
When designing your perfect home, it’s important to consider your lifestyle and how you will use the spaces and amenities. However, smart homebuyers also think about the future. As HGTV points out, you should think about how your needs will change in the future. Are you planning to add to your family? You may want extra bedrooms. Do you dream of running a business out of your home? Consider creating a separate space that can house your business when drawing up your floor plan. Will this be your retirement home? Think about how you can make the space safe and accessible for seniors.
4. Be Realistic About Delays
Delays are a fact of life in the construction industry (source). Bad weather, material muddles, scheduling mix-ups, and other unpleasant surprises can make the job take longer than expected. While an experienced contractor will keep these holdups to a minimum, it’s safest to expect delays and plan accordingly. That way, you aren’t left without a place to live or store your belongings if something throws off the construction schedule.
5. Get Everything in Writing
To minimize the likelihood of misunderstandings, mistakes, and miscommunications, get everything in writing. Immortalize everything that you want your builder to complete in detail in your contract. This ensures that everyone is on the same page and prevents disagreements over responsibilities and expectations.
Effective communication is vital for any successful relationship. That’s why staying in touch with your builder is sure to be on any list of tips for working with a custom home builder. How do you do it? First, know who to contact at the company and how to reach them. Visit the site in person to see the progress, and if you have concerns or questions, speak up! Staying in touch and receiving regular updates will give you peace of mind and make your adventures in custom homebuilding more pleasant.
Are you looking for a mortgage to help fund your new construction project? At PrimeLending of Kansas City, our knowledgeable loan officers are ready to answer your questions and provide you with friendly, personal attention and straightforward guidance. With an expansive array of loan products and a friendly team of loan officers to help you explore your options, we make it easy to find the financing that you need. To learn more about our services, contact us today.