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Tips for Building a Custom Home

What an exciting time you’ve decided to build a custom home. There are so many details to follow up with, so many decisions to think through. All of it wrapped in the creamy joy of having a brand new home, customized to your exact specifications. What could be better?

Before you start the building process, there are a few things you should think about and a bunch of things you must think about. We’re here to help you make this journey as painless and as fruitful as possible. With that in mind, here are some tips on what to think about when you’re building a custom home.

The Right Builder

This is the start, or it could be the end of your building process. Before you pick out a single chair or imagine a single shrub’s placement, you have to find an experienced, reliable, stable builder for your new home.

This is the most critical step, and all the rest of your decisions are going to key off finding the right builder for you and your home. Once you do that, most other things are going to fall neatly in place.

Experience is vital but also approachability. You need a builder that has stood the test of time and will listen to your needs and dreams. You don’t want a builder who is just going by the numbers, who tells you, we know what we’re doing; this is how it’s always done. You need a builder that is as excited about your dream home as you are. A builder who is building your home, not just another place.

Take time to shop around and find a place with years of experience and great reviews. A company like Revere Homes has been in the business a long time, has an excellent track record, and you can go and see their work. Talk to your potential builder; do they listen, do they care, do they get you? 

Once you’ve found the perfect builder, things will get a little easier; they will make your life so much less stressful and complicated. Do your homework, choose wisely, and the rest will take care of itself. 

But, think about these things.

Location

Location is an integral part of the new home building journey; You’ll want lovely views, great neighbors, a safe place for kids and family. You’ll also want to be far enough away from the hustle and bustle but not so far that you need a Sherpa guide to find a grocery store.

Location is the sweet spot. One of the best paths to finding the right location is to take a walk around the neighborhood. Just see what the houses look like, their condition. Think about your job, schools, and entertainment possibilities. Are you near all you need and want so work isn’t a trek and schools are accessible? A little distance from the madding crowd is reasonable but, you don’t want to be off the map altogether.

Here’s a tip; have a meal in a local restaurant. You’ll probably be the new face, which could open up the conversation about the area. You’ll get a feeling for the local people and the general vibe this way. And, hopefully, you’ll find a new favorite place to eat.

Don’t discount “feeling.” If you’re not feeling good about the area, listen to that. Our gut is usually correct. Ideally, you’ll be spending a long time in the house and the area, so you must feel at home, welcomed, and safe.

Get your paperwork in order

two women signing documents on table

Before there is one shovel of earth removed to make room for your new home, it’s a good idea to have all your paperwork in order. This includes work permits, digging permits, floor plans, and any other license or paperwork you need for a local government inspector. You don’t want to be forced to pause construction because you’re missing a permit or a piece of paper.

The right builder can significantly alleviate the stress here. A builder like Revere Homes will take care of most of that paperwork for you. This is one of the reasons why finding the right builder is first on this list. A good, intelligent, experienced builder does more than just put the house up. They will advise you, guide you, handle building permits, and let you know what you have to provide yourself. A good builder gives you a dream house; a great builder, like Revere Homes, gives you peace of mind as well.

Begin simple

It’s a dream home, and what do we know about dreams? Well, dreams have no rules and no boundaries. A dream home has got to be grounded in reality, so start simple and write things down.

Write down your must-haves and your deal-breakers. Think about elements of your current living situation that you never want to see in your house again. Write them down.

Go to home shows and open houses, find inspiration. Look at room size and configuration, ceiling height, window placement, what do you like, what do you want to stay away from? Write it all down.

Once you’ve brainstormed and talked with family and friends, now it’s time to prioritize. What can you not live without? Whittle your list down, and then do it again. You want to have it all there and be happy with it so that when you present your wants and needs to your builder, you don’t feel as if you had to settle for something that you weren’t excited about.

An organized, prioritized set of wants and dislikes will give you more confidence going forward, and it will be a standard document that you and your builder can refer to during the process.

Are you over customizing?

Yes, it’s a custom home, built to your specifications to suit your needs. However, it is possible to over-customize a house.

When you over-customize, you run the risk of adding features that are so micro-specific to you and your family that you may make the house virtually impossible to sell.

Now, most people say they will never sell their house, but the numbers beg to differ. About 36% of custom home builders eventually sell their homes for various reasons. These include too much space for empty nesters, too expensive to keep up; for whatever reason, many families who say never end up saying yes.

When you’re customizing, make sure you’re not customizing to the point that you can no longer sell the house, or it will require a massive rebuild to make it appealing to someone else. Talk to Revere Homes; they will tell you when you’re going overboard or making your house so specific that it will never sell.

Think electrical outlets and plumbing

Have you ever walked into a room and realized there were no electrical outlets, or there are very few, and they are all on one wall? It happens. So, avoid that. When planning your new home, make sure there are outlets in all the rooms, and there are enough of them to fulfill your electrical needs. Where do you plug in your big items, and where can you plug in your smaller appliances?

Think of your interior and your exterior power needs. Are there enough outlets for the hedge trimmers, the ten million light Christmas display? More is better than fewer when it comes to outlets. Map them out, plan them out and make sure your builder installs them.

The same goes for plumbing. Think of your family, elderly family members who will come to visit. Do they have access to the bathroom without having to navigate a lot of stairs? Are there enough bathrooms and sinks to accommodate a house full of guests? Think about all of these situations and plan your electrical and plumbing accordingly.

Brace for decision fatigue

color swatches, paint samples, and tile samples

When you’re building a custom home, you will have a lot of decisions to make. Be ready for that. Writing down your must-haves. You’ll want to be prepared for the flood of decisions so that you’re not getting to the point of being overwhelmed and just giving up.  Once the place is built and you’re in a more relaxed frame of mind, you may look back on those fatigued choices and say, “what on earth was I thinking!?”

It’s your home, your builder, don’t be afraid to say, “I need to sleep on this.” Or, “can you give me a little time to consider this?”  Do not lose control due to outside pressure and timelines; get rest, drink water, relax and never approach a decision alone. Ask a family member or ask your trusted Revere Homes builder for advice.

Speaking of timelines

It’s always best to approach your home completion timeline with optimistic skepticism. Be hopeful that the builder will meet the schedule, but do not go crazy or become fatalistic if they don’t.

Weather conditions can quickly push move-in dates, as can not having the correct paperwork, compliance with local building codes, or any number of issues can make your exact move-in date not so precise. Again, this is where having a wise, experienced builder comes in handy.

Admittedly, this isn’t as simple as just waiting a few days or weeks. There are rental properties you’re staying in while the home is being built. So, it is not convenient but, be prepared in case the move-in date gets pushed. Have a plan and talk to Revere Homes.

Be patient

cardboard box with kids feet sticking out of it

Be patient with yourself, your family, friends, neighbors, the postman, everyone. This is a highly emotional time. You are spending a lot of money; you’re making a dream come true, every minor inconvenience will be exaggerated in your mind. Breathe.

Once again, do your homework and find that perfect builder, the one with decades of experience, knowledge, and care, and you will be fine. Talk to the representatives at Revere Homes; they’ve been there, have seen it all, and will take good care of you, and they will help you every step of the way. It’s a big adventure and one that will last a lifetime. Despite all the must-dos and the checklists, take time to appreciate what is going on in your life and make sure you make time to celebrate building your new custom home.