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10 Tips to Remember About Building a Custom Home



When you want to build your home in your own specific way, it isn’t always easy to bring your vision to life. From taking care of landscaping to designing the exteriors, and from crafting the perfect living room to the bedroom of your dreams, the list of essential aspects keeps growing. Hiring a reliable and credible custom home builder can help you to a significant extent. But keeping a few best practices in mind also goes a long way.

Here are 10 tips to remember while building your custom home that would make this process easier to manage.

1. Devise Your Budget

You don’t go shopping with empty pockets, so why do that while doing something as crucial as building your own home?

It is essential that you take the time to assess your income, your savings, and your current expenditures to devise a budget for your custom home. Building a custom home could bring a lot of costs with it. This is certainly something that you may not realize prior to the start of the process, and which you may only be able to understand after having a detailed discussion with a home builder.

Expenditures such as the purchase of materials, acquisition of permits, and paying the custom home builder themselves would be inevitable. Keeping this in mind, make sure that you dive into the project while knowing of these various expenses and having a budget to back them up. Needless to say, draw a line where your expenses are concerned and stick to it to avoid unsavoury situations.

2. Get Your Family’s Views

If you are building a custom home, then chances are that you may not be the only one living in it. Given that, make sure that all the inhabitants who will be calling the new house a home are on board with the decisions you make.

While this doesn’t mean that you have to hold residential-board level meetings with all the members of your family, it does suggest that you have their votes on major decisions. The area where your house has to be built, the number of rooms it will have, and the overall design that it will have, are all decisions that your family members would like to have a say in. Make sure to keep this in mind and discuss the views with your custom home builder accordingly to keep everyone happy and excited about the new house.

3. Find a Lot That’s as Large as Possible

What’s worse than having a metaphorical deadlock with your family? A physical barrier that keeps you from building the house of your dreams.

A custom home design can be quite expansive in size as compared to its counterparts. Depending upon the structure you are building, you may have your main house occupying hundreds of square feet, all by itself. That’s without the landscaping, backyard or front lawn areas that you must have at your house to make it look appealing. Having a small building lot keeps you from exploring these possibilities that you can unlock with a custom design.

Ensuring that you purchase as large a construction lot as your budget helps you build your custom home with ease. Even if you are building a sweetheart home for two, you can allocate the rest of the area towards landscaping, which would give the tiny structure a heartwarming appeal.

4. Make Sure That Your Home is Built in an Accessible Yet Design-Friendly Area

While finding that large lot, do not underestimate the importance of accessibility. If you build your magnificent estate in the middle of the forest, then it will likely create a plethora of issues for you and your family. But if you select a property that’s right in the heart of downtown, then it may restrict your landscaping potential.

The key is to strike a balance between these aspects and select a location that is accessible while remaining design-friendly. Take your time in finding the ideal location that sets the scales perfectly.

5. Keep the Limitations of Local Regulations in Mind

Regardless of the place where you reside, you must follow a few regulations and restrictions that are imposed by your local building authority or the local climate. Requirements may include but are not limited to numerous safety codes, the addition of floors, or the creation of basements under the house.

Since your home builder earns a living by following these regulations, they would be the best person to know about all of these requirements and restrictions. Before you make any design choices, make sure to discuss them with your custom home builder. This would help you avoid running into situations where you find out that the wine cellar you wanted cannot be built at all, or that you have simply been holding out from the idea of having a basement just because you live in an area such as Southern California.

6. Make Sure Not to Compromise on Sturdy Fixtures

Having stronger roofing, plumbing, heating and electric fixtures may seem expensive at first, but it pays off in the long run. Making sure that your materials are stronger and more likely to sustain extensive durations could save you from spending on sudden repair costs over the years.

While spending on design elements such as custom walls patterns or frosted glass windows may seem alluring, make sure that you are not spending on aesthetics in exchange for functionality. Discuss the costs and consequences with your home builder to strike a balance between these aspects.

7. Pay Ample Attention to Landscaping

Landscaping is just as important to a home’s design as the walls that hold it together. Even if you have managed to build a small castle, if it looks like it is in the middle of a desert, then it may not project the aesthetics you wanted.

This is why paying attention to gardening and landscaping around your house is crucial. If you know what you are doing, then you don’t actually have to pay for landscaping with an arm and a leg. Instead, you can manage to garden like a pro without shelling out a fortune.

8. Don’t Forget Storage Spaces

This is another aspect that needs your attention. Most new homeowners forget about storage while building their custom design, only to realize afterwards how crucial it is to a house’s functionality.

Not only does storage help you fix clutter issues but it also helps your family live a more streamlined life. With well-designed closets, drawers and garage storage spaces, you no longer have to run about whenever you need essentials such as outerwear, sports equipment, or construction tools to help around the house.

Eliminating clutter and bringing ease of access to your life is actually one of the best parts of working with a custom home design. It saves you ample costs in terms of external storage solutions, while also giving your home some well-deserved points in aesthetics.

9. Make Sure to Invest into Greener Construction

Having a house built with the environment in mind isn’t only good for the planet, but it is also great in terms of the health of your bank account. While spending more on greener solutions such as special insulation or thermal windows may seem like unnecessary costs, these energy efficient structures make sure that you are saving tons in terms of bills in the long run.

This also makes your life easier to live as you can enjoy a better more stable temperature in all environments. Any custom home builder who has adapted to the much-needed requirements of these evolving times also specializes in such structures. The key is to choose a contractor who fulfils these requirements.

10. Finalize an End Product in Your Mind from the Start

As with every design project, you need to make sure that the end result is clear in your mind. Having this crystal clear vision of what you need your custom home to eventually look like helps you make relevant decisions. When putting together, they collectively add up towards reaching your design goal.

Adversely, not giving this aspect enough attention can result in hasty decisions, or ones that don’t make sense when put together. This can cause you to go back on your decisions during the construction, or simply letting them take their course because it’s too late to change them. Either way, the excessive spending on multiple decisions or the tinge of regret at not getting what you actually wanted can negate the whole purpose of building a custom home in the first place.

In order to avoid going the “botched” route, make sure that you take the time to discuss your plans with your custom home builder. By having a clear objective ahead, you and your home builder can make collective decisions to make sure your vision comes to life.

It Doesn’t Have to Be

Building a custom home from scratch may seem like a gruelling process, but it doesn’t have to be that way. By following our suggestions and having detailed discussions with your family, home builders, and other contractors, you can develop a structure that you are proud of.

The key here is to make sure that you are doing everything you can to build a sustainable, long-lasting yet aesthetically pleasing home for yourself and your family. While the process may be extensive, the end result and the smiles that you and your family have on your faces will be worth it.

Needless to say, since every home design and project is different, make sure to form your own to-do list to get the most out of your new custom home. If you need specific advice, then don’t hesitate from reaching out to Zbranek & Holt Custom Homes today. As a recipient of multiple National Master Builder awards, ZH Constructions can help you turn your dream house into a reality.

Zbranek & Holt are NAHB certified Graduate Builders and award winning custom home builders that have been building homes in Austin and surrounding areas for over 35 years and is a respected and requested Austin custom home builder.