Wednesday, February 28th, 2007 at 6:28 pm by EbonyMom
I’ve had a few people ask me for any tips or advice while building a new home. We’ve been extraordinarly blessed to be building in Texas which has a huge new home market and is affordable for just about anyone to get into a new home regardless of price range. These are some of the things we discovered in our building of 2 homes (1 fell through 1 completed):
- Be sure to fully investigate planned development of the surrounding area where your home is being built.Not just what’s existing but check with the local government website to see future development plans. The first house we considered building was a great price in a nice area but a huge athletic field (completely with blinding stadium lights) is slated to be installed within the next year. Calling the city engineer saved us a huge headache- and a possible future of many sleepless nights.
- Spec homes can be a very cost effective option
- Add in structured wiring
- Your builder should be your ally
- Know what you want BEFORE you start building
- Don’t be afraid to incorporate extra storage options
Spec homes are inventory homes completed by builders. The building process can be completed before a buyer is found or in our case building can already be in progress. Because our home was already in progress we were able to get a much earlier completion time but there were still many options we were able to choose ourselves (paint colors, flooring, light fixtures, etc.) We may have had more of a say in other features of the home if we had started building ourselves but we were able to get a significant cost reduction because the builder was trying to sell the home. Again, this is as far as I know only applicable in places where there are large quantities of builders (i.e. Texas with its glut of constant home builders) so I’m not sure if this applies anywhere else in the nation.
This is EbonyDad’s tip. It’s far cheaper to incorporate wiring throughout a home while it is being built than afterwards. Our home is wired for phone and internet throughout with multiple cable inputs. This was thankfully just a service of this particular builder- the previous builder charged much more for adding wiring but even those charges were cheaper than trying to add it afterwards.
A good construction manager makes all of the difference in the home building process. Our construction manager was very helpful and always answered our questions and concerns quickly and effectively. If a builder tells you that you really don’t need or want something you’d request I don’t think I’d agree to use their services.
This sounds like it should be common sense, but there are seriously so many new and available options by builders it is in your best interest to research thoroughly. Don’t just visit homes in your immediate price range and accept what they offer- investigate higher end homes to see what all is available. Our previous builder refused to even consider upgrading to hardwood floors without major cost increase, but the final builder provided handscraped hardwoods as a standard feature.
When building a home your floor plan makes all the difference. If you find that you have hollow wall space- make them turn it into a closet. Move doors if needed and extra shelves and cabinets are much less expensive to add during the initial building process than later on.
Hope these help. I am by no means an expert on homebuilding but these are the things I wish I had known before we even started looking for new homes. Thankfully everything worked out wonderfully but I really had no clue on so much of this before we started.