This article was written by guest blogger Suzie Wilson.
When you build a custom home you get to bring your vision to life and create the house of your dreams from the ground up. However, it takes a lot of planning and careful decision-making to build a custom home, and there are several things you’ll need to get started. Finding the right professionals to help you create the house is essential, and from there you’ll need to create a plan in order to stay on task and on budget. Of course, you’ll also need to think about buying land in just the right spot, and that can be quite a job in itself. So, here are four tips to help you get started when you’re ready to build your dream home.
Find the Right Loan
Home loans differ quite a bit when you’re building one from scratch, so you’ll need to take a look at your options and evaluate them to find the best fit. Gather all the paperwork you’ll need for the financials and consider whether you’ll want a construction-to-permanent loan. This type of loan ensures that the lender pays the builders as the work is done, and when the home is finished, that cost is rolled into your mortgage. To make this a viable option, you’ll need to find a contractor who is well established in your area and has a solid work history, including an ability to hit deadlines on time. One great benefit is that you can lock in your interest rate at closing.
Pay Close Attention to the Details
This goes without saying when you build a custom home; you may even already have a long list of details you know you want in the home. However, it’s essential to think about the consequences of those details. For instance, the HVAC system is an extremely important part of any home, and they aren’t all alike. In fact, there are many different kinds of heating and air systems, and they vary widely in both price and function. If the one you choose is too large, you’ll end up using a lot more energy than necessary to heat and cool the house. If it’s too small, and you’ll be miserable when summer rolls around. So, do some research before making decisions, especially when it comes to the most expensive items.
When you’re building your dream home, you might be tempted to concentrate on the things you’ve always wanted in a house, but it’s also important to look into the future as well. How will the house fit your needs 10 or 20 years from now? If you’re okay with selling down the road, you won’t have to worry about these things, but many homeowners who build want to create a family home that will last for quite a while, and if you’re planning on sticking around you’ll need to make sure you’ll be able to do some modifications for your senior years. This type of planning also applies to couples who want to have kids and may need additional space.
Don’t Get Seduced by Unnecessary Space
Speaking of space, you may feel tempted to add things to your home simply because they’re popular and not because you’ll actually use them. This might include a home gym, a sun porch, a formal dining room, or a craft room. Think about how often this type of extra space would actually get used, and consider condensing it if you’re sure about adding it. For instance, you can have a craft space that is also an office or a guest bedroom.
Building a custom home is often a dream come true, and with some careful planning, you can enjoy the process without spending too much money or becoming stressed in the process. Do some research on each step, and make the hiring process one of the most important things you do so you can find the right help for the job.
John Caravella Esq., is a construction attorney and formerly practicing project architect at The Law Office of John Caravella, P.C., representing architects, engineers, contractors, subcontractors, and owners in all phases of contract preparation, litigation, and arbitration across New York and Florida. He also serves as an arbitrator to the American Arbitration Association Construction Industry Panel. Mr. Caravella can be reached by email: [email protected] or (631) 608-1346.
This is a general information article and should not be construed as legal advice or a legal opinion. The content above has been edited for conciseness and additional relevant points are omitted for space constraints. Readers are encouraged to seek counsel from a construction lawyer who has experience with Long Island construction law for advice on a particular circumstance.
Suzie Wilson is an interior designer with more than 20 years experience. What started as a hobby (and often, a favor to friends) turned into a passion for creating soothing spaces in homes of every size and style. While her goal always includes making homes look beautiful, her true focus is on fashioning them into serene, stress-free environments that inspire tranquility in all who enter.