New Home Construction Building Guide: 6 Things to Know Before You Start Construction on Your Dream House​ by 30Seconds Mom

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3 years ago

New Home Construction Building Guide: 6 Things to Know Before You Start Construction on Your Dream House​

Remember yourself as a 6-year-old child with a box of colorful crayons, about to draw on a blank piece of construction paper. You draw a little wooden house with a vertical stone chimney and thick smoke coming out of it, a curved cobblestone walkway along the ground. You follow it with a flowering apple tree and a garden full of bright pink and orange flowers. Maybe you even add a little lake beside the house for fishing and snow-capped mountains in the background. Why not? After all, it’s part of the simple, yet perfect, childhood dream.

Owning property and building a house is a dream for many people, sometimes starting in childhood when you are drawing that picture. As you grow up, it may become all the more important, as you want to provide your family with a safe and comfortable place to live.

Building a house tailored to your unique lifestyle is an option to consider when you're ready for a home of your own. Though building a home is very rewarding, it does require a lot of work and planning. There are not just hundreds but thousands of things on a checklist that one has to keep in mind – from establishing a budget to making changes to the construction plans to selecting materials. It's important to educate yourself before you start on this journey so that your expectations align with reality.

When you were a child, building houses out of those colorful building blocks and drawing them on construction paper was easy. But as an adult, it can be very challenging to build a new home from the ground up. Here are six important things to keep in mind before starting construction on your dream home:

1. Understand the Legalities 

If this is your first time building a home, you should run all the contracts and agreements through a reputable lawyer. Understand what you have mutually agreed upon and know the details of the agreements you make with the contractors. Timeframes for payments should be specified in the contracts. Many locations may offer grants and lower loan amounts if the structure you are building is eco-friendly. Doing your research may bring down your overall cost of the project. A quick check in at the local bank with an experienced banker might come in handy, too.

2. Create a Schedule From Start to Finish

Building a house takes time and patience. From unexpected weather conditions to financial situations, scheduling can be a major task when building a new home. Keep bonus time for yourself and be prepared for delays. Consider an alternative place to stay, to fall back on, if extra time is needed to finish the construction. Sometimes, a delay can lead to frustration and, though unfinished, people move into their new buildings expecting to finish the rest of the construction later. It’s better to complete all construction before you move so you can focus on settling in your new home instead of finishing the build.

3. Design With Your Future in Mind

The extra space for storage might not be needed now, but as your family grows, you may thank yourself for thinking and planning ahead. Tearing down existing walls later and reconstruction might be avoided if you have planned ahead and looked at the big picture. Planning a structure with the future in mind may seem like a tedious and unnecessary process, but it can have a huge impact on your lifestyle later down the road. You can never have too much storage space! 

4. Get the Right Contractors for Cost Effectiveness

The rookie mistake of hiring the first contractor you meet and who over-promises may cost you. Do your homework before you finalize the hiring of a contractor. Read customer reviews on construction workers from Loftera to save yourself from losing money and time in the long run. It is important to choose a contractor who can account for things and also assist in smart decisions of construction. Also, keep personal accounts of small things that you invest in when the construction is going on, like buying a hammer or measuring tape at the hardware store.

5. Invest in Quality Interiors 

With so many trendy décor items to choose from, deciding on home interiors can be a challenge. Focus more on the fixtures and fixed interiors, as they are the parts of your home that will not be changed often. Small decoration items like window treatments, pillows, bedding and wall art can be replaced anytime. By investing in quality yet cost-effective fixtures, you may save yourself future repair costs. Also, take some time deciding on the color theme throughout your new house. Take into consideration the amount of light you have in the house, and keep in mind that this will set the tone of your home. Many colors, like pastels, have a soothing effect, compared to bright colors like red.

6. Try to Stay Calm

Construction is not for the feint of heart. Delays, schedule conflicts and never-ending tasks can easily lead to a lot of mental stress. Constant decision making about fixtures, floor tiles and countertops can sometimes lead to heated debates. Write down your construction plans and ideas so you can refer to your notes when faced with new decisions. Building something is not easy, but definitely worth the effort once it is completed and you move into your new home.

As the construction progresses, be prepared to change and adapt, if needed. Expect to make mistakes and have no regrets. Even if all the ideas you have in mind do not match your exact specifications, maintain your vision and work on making your new home a reality. Sometimes we tend to overthink, and things we worried about will not even be noticed in the end. Try not to fret or overthink every little detail of the construction. Remember, building your house may have a time limit, but making it a home may be a long-term process. Enjoy it your new home! 

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Elisa Schmitz
This is awesome advice. I've never built an entire home, but I've done extensive remodeling / rebuilding of two older homes. It's definitely not for the feint of heart. You have to be resolute but also adaptable to the inevitable changes and delays. Thank you for this great article, so helpful!
I would love to build a new home someday. Thanks for the tips.
My friends built their own home and it was amazing to watch it happen. What a gift to be able to do this!
Such an exciting undertaking.
Donna John
I built a house back in the '90s, and it was fun, but stressful. Great advice here!
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