As the saying goes, hindsight is always 20/20—and this especially pertains to building a new home from scratch. Reflecting back on my own experience has made me realize that some aspects were more important to homebuilding than others, and here are some of them:
Once You Have a Plan, Stick to It
It is much more cost effective—not to mention that it saves more time—to create a blueprint that you can stick to. This isn’t to say that you need to have absolutely every detail planned out from the beginning, but you should have it nearly set in stone by the time blueprints are drafted.
Image via Will Scullin, Flickr
Creating changes halfway through the homebuilding process will end up burning a hole in your pocket and make the wait for your new home to be finished even longer.
Privacy and Safety Are Key
Building a new home requires the hands of many laborers and can be a loud, disruptive process. Help eliminate the risk of construction accidents and protect your new turf from curious neighbors by using temporary fencing (see below).
Image via National Temporary Fencing
Objects on Paper May Appear Larger Than They Actually Are
Don’t be fooled by the dimensions drawn on paper for you, or judge a room by how it looks unfurnished. Make sure that you have measurements for every piece of furniture that you plan to use in each room, and rely on actual numerical dimensions rather than visual drawings.
Shop Around With Builders
Don’t just find one builder that gives you a good quote and be done with it. Get quotes from several builders for every aspect of homebuilding—lumber, flooring, etc. Remember that you’re the one who has to have the final say, and you may find better deals than what you thought you initially could. Builders understand that customers want to shop around for the best deal, so don’t be afraid of coming off as annoying or pushy.
Don’t Be Scared to Negotiate
Just as you want to get quotes from several builders, don’t hesitate to try to talk them down a little from their initial asking price. Quotes are often subjective, and mentioning that one builder is offering a better deal than the one you’re seeking a quote from may be enough for them to lower it. If you don’t ask, you’ll never know.
Upgrade Your Appliances
Upgrading through your builder is often much less expensive than upgrading later down the road, because you’ll have to buy everything at retail price. Also, once you’re ready to move in, the last thing you’ll want to do is make more renovations to a home that you just built from the ground up.
No home construction project is ever without hitches in the process, but you can reduce unplanned problems by planning everything out in detail in the very beginning and shopping around for the best deals. Always remember that the customer is always right, and as the customer, you have every right to ask questions, explore options, and be included in every step along the way.