HI THERE!! We’re so glad you decided to stop by! So, you’re thinking about building a home, eeek! Throughout our years in the industry, we’ve collectively built hundreds if not thousands of homes…so we have just a few tidbits to share with you before you take the plunge 😉 ! Building a home is one of the most exciting times of your life because you get to see a plan go from ground zero to a place where you call home. And there are several different routes you can take when you decide to build a home. You can work with a national production builder, who has preset plans and preset packages. Or you can go with a semi-custom builder, who has some preset plans and packages, but will also allow you to make some changes. There’s also the option to go through a design-bid-build process, where an architect works with you to design your home, and then you have multiple custom builders bid out the home and ultimately construct it. And last, you can work with a custom design build firm, where all of the design and construction is done in house. As I’m sure you can imagine, we always, always, ALWAYS recommend going custom, especially the later of the two. 🙂
Okay, I know what you’re thinking, “You’re a custom design build firm, of course you would choose that option.” Well, you’re right, we are and there’s a reason for that, and a reason we chose to structure our business that way. We’ve seen WAY TOO MANY cookie cutter houses in our day, the first one looking like the next one, with ZERO personality, and worse, they don’t always work with the way people live. We truly believe home should be a place that is a reflection of you, so pre-determined packages and 5-10 overused floor plans just don’t cut it in our book! Custom home building will create a space unlike any other for you and your family.
The first part, and probably the best part about custom is the PERSONALIZATION. Nowadays you see homes built left and right on every block, and what do they have in common…EVERYTHING. Woah, getting ahead of myself a little bit. Maybe they have some variation in color and maybeee the garage is on varying sides but for the most part they all look the same. If you’re working with a good custom firm, I can almost guarantee you will never have that issue. You have the ability to create a floor plan from scratch and sketch out of every nook and cranny in your house. Let’s say you really like a certain style kitchen or want a special room for arts and crafts, whatever it is you love, your home will be tailor fit to you and your lifestyle.
2. INVOLVEMENT & FLEXIBILITY
Another huge bonus that comes with going custom is being able to be involved in the building process…meaning you actually have input! No longer do you have to sit back and keep quiet about the details. Don’t like that cabinet to the right of the sink that’s drawn on the plan? Change it! Think that wall should be moved 3 inches to the right? Move it! You aren’t limited to only a few different colors and materials to choose from or preset packages…with custom, the sky is the limit! It’s a time to whip out those creative juices, fill your Pinterest boards with fun ideas and create something you can look back on and say I was a part of that process.
I know what some of you are thinking – “I don’t have a creative bone in my body, how am I supposed to work through ALL of those details?” While you have the ability to voice your opinion, your designer or architect will help guide your steps and suggest which materials/features/layouts work best in your home. THANK GOODNESS right?! So don’t worry, you won’t be completely lost when it comes to choosing the details. If you are working with a design build firm, they should have architects and/or designers on staff to help you through the planning and selection process. If you hired an architect to design the house and bid the house out with different custom builders, do yourself a huge favor and make sure you hire an interior designer to help with the selections. They will literally pay for themselves in problems and mistakes avoided and will make the process MUCH easier.
When it comes to building, we have two main priorities: cater to the client and stay within their budget. While higher production builders may keep you on a budget, they’ll also most likely keep you in a fairly bound box with not much room for creativity. As a custom builder, we want you to give us all your fun ideas and help you hone in on which ones will work best with the budget you’ve given us. This system also keeps you in check during the furniture and accessory selection process, preventing those binge shopping trips…because we all know how slippery of a slope that can be!
We have a philosophy at Alma that we’ll only take on clients that we could see ourselves sitting down and having dinner with. Because building is a VERY personal process and you’re going to spend a LOT of time with your builder and designer. To a good custom builder, you aren’t just another client or another job that needs to get done…you’re a person with opinions, likes, dislikes, needs and wants! Look for this before you hire anyone. They should care about YOU, not treat you like cattle shuttling through a system. Home building is stressful so the last thing you want are people who could care less about your design style or family’s needs. And how fun is it to be able to create a beautiful home, designed around you and your family, and having people who you trust and who care about you making sure everything runs smooth? I can’t imagine a better scenario!
So tell us in the comments below, have you built a home before? What were your favorite parts? What were the most stressful? If you could do it over again, what would you change?! Hope you all have a great week!