Searching for a home can be an exciting process, but this journey can quickly get frustrating if you can’t find what you’re looking for. As we all know, buying a home involves more than just the actual real estate. You have to consider the neighborhood, surrounding amenities, outdoor space, and of course the actual home and its features.
Add in competition from other buyers and/or a lack of inventory, and this exciting journey is suddenly maddening. That is, until you consider building a home.
That’s right. You don’t have to compete with anyone—or settle for anything—if you don’t want to. You can build a custom home instead.
Naturally, building a home comes with its own set of advantages and challenges. After all, if it were that easy to erect a custom home, there would be no new construction home builders, and every general contractor would be booked from here till the end of time with custom home projects.
So let’s see if this route is the right real estate choice for you.
Pros of Building a Custom Home
Build your dream home
Does the opportunity to create your dream living space sound good to you? It does to many people, which is why the custom home trend remains alive and well.
While items like light fixtures can be easily swapped out on an existing home, making big-time changes like the location of interior walls or a bathroom (or plumbing fixtures) isn’t typically feasible.
Buying an existing home can also involve compromising on either the right features or the perfect location. On the other hand, a custom home, once completed, is tailored to your exact preferences. That means there’s no remodel in your future!
The latest and greatest
Custom homes come equipped with the latest energy-efficient technologies. Building a home allows you to incorporate cutting-edge, environmentally friendly features that not only contribute to an eco-friendly lifestyle but also can save money in the long run.
Speaking of technology, do you like smart home features? Enjoy monitoring your energy usage on your phone? When starting with a brand-new build site, you have the opportunity to incorporate all the latest and greatest technology into your home from the jump.
This can encompass everything from energy-efficient appliances to plumbing and electrical. Yes, that’s right. Your lighting fixtures and plumbing fixtures can save money. Is there anything technology can’t do?
Cons of Building a Custom Home
You may save money with those lighting and plumbing fixtures, but remember, you must buy them first. And have them installed. And that’s after you’ve already obtained a build site, finalized floor plans, secured building permits, installed plumbing and electrical, erected interior walls, and undergone a litany of other tasks, both large and small.
It sounds like a lot—and it can be. However, this short-term pain can be worth it for the long-term payoff that comes with a dream home, especially if there’s an opportunity to save money down the line on remodels or appliance refreshes.
If you didn’t get the sense from above, we’ll reiterate it here. Building a home will take time, energy, and money, even if you’ve got excellent home builders and the best general contractor in the business. Since this is a custom home, you’ll be weighing in on a lot.
It sounds fun at first, but all this decision-making can quickly spiral. This is when professionals can come in handy. A real estate agent can help you find the perfect site. A general contractor can advise on building materials and popular configurations. An interior designer can help with those pesky lighting fixtures and plumbing fixtures.
Expect the unexpected
Let’s face it, unforeseen challenges tend to come with the territory of building a home. It’s not that custom home builders are lazy or shady by any means. It’s just that unpredictability reigns supreme when you’re dealing with weather, the supply chain, building permits, a build site, and plumbing and electrical.Try to keep this in mind when you’re determining budgets and timelines.
Construction delays could also impact your current living situation. This could be a particular pain point if you have to give your landlord notice—or if you’ve sold your current home and need to move out by a certain date.
The Custom Home Building Process
Understanding the ins and outs of building a home is pivotal before deciding whether it’s right for you. Key tasks you’ll need to consider include:
- Consulting with a real estate agent. Even if you’re not buying an existing house, a real estate agent can help you find the perfect build site in the perfect location. They can also help you evaluate market trends, understand property values, and offer advice on potential resale value.
- Choosing experienced and reputable home builders. Research and choose a builder with a proven track record of delivering high-quality custom homes on time and on budget.
- Collaborating with a reputable general contractor to ensure a smooth and successful construction process. This person will oversee the coordination of various aspects of building a home, such as securing building permits, managing subcontractors, and adhering to local building codes.
- Navigating the regulatory process. Understanding and obtaining the right building permits is an important step in the construction process. Local building codes and regulations must be adhered to, and a knowledgeable general contractor can be your best friend through this aspect of building a custom home.
- Securing a construction loan. Financing the actual building process of a custom home often involves obtaining a construction loan. You want to explore various loan options and understand the associated interest rates, then choose the one that aligns with your financial goals. APM is always here to help you with this step.
- Designing your dream home. We finally got to the fun part! This is where you talk among yourselves and then engage with an architect and interior designer who can help you shape the aesthetics and functionality of your custom home. From floor plans to energy-efficient lighting fixtures, plumbing and electrical layouts, and everything in between, you have the freedom to personalize every detail.
- Selling (or renting) your current home. You certainly have to consider the logistics of selling or renting out your existing property before you build a house. Plus, strategically timing the sale or rental agreement can prevent a boatload of stress during the construction phase.
Building a home allows you to create a space that reflects your personal preferences and lifestyle. While it comes with its challenges (cons), the potential benefits (pros), such as a tailored living space, energy efficiency, and a fresh start, can outweigh the bad for many people.
Still, you have to think about your budget, timeline, and commitment to the building process when determining if a custom home is right for you. Consulting with professionals, including a real estate agent, home builders, a general contractor, an interior designer, and, yes, a Loan Advisor, is the wisest, most responsible step you can take as you begin this process.
When you get there, we’re here to help every step of the way. Feel free to contact us anytime.