Building a dream home can be one of the most thrilling milestones in a person’s life. The opportunity to see a seedling of an idea bloom into your dream home is a priceless venture. Not to mention, building your own home allows you the freedom to customize your space, in accordance with your own personal taste. You won’t have to uproot existing cabinets, tear down walls, or replace unsightly hardware, as every detail of your home will be pre-approved by you and your family.
While building a home is an opportunity for creative expression, it’s a process that insists on quick decision-making skills. In a second’s time, you’ll have to choose between tens or even hundreds of backsplashes or wallpaper designs. From the planning stage to the construction phase, there’s a lot to consider. Here are a few of the most important checklist items.
Consider Your Future
If you’re carving out the time and resources necessary to design your dream home, chances are, you’ll be living in it for a long time. This means you need to consider not just your current needs and desires, but the needs and desires of your future self, as well.
Maybe, for now, your family is small, but are there more children on-the-way? Could regular visits from grandchildren necessitate the playroom you don’t currently need as an empty-nester? Will stairs become difficult as you age? These are difficult questions to ask yourself since we can’t always predict what the future will hold. A dream home, however, is a long-term investment, and it pays to think long and hard about what the “future you” will want.
Tour Model Homes For Inspiration
You might love the idea of having a say in designing your dream home, but there is no need to reinvent the wheel. Touring other homes in your area will help give you an idea of what you might want in your own construction process.
This is a useful exercise throughout the planning process. Before you have any idea what type of house you’d like, touring other homes can give you a basic understanding of your wants and needs Do you want a cape or a colonial? One story or two? Getting an up-close look at other houses will help you make these big decisions.
Once you’re farther along in the planning process, you can assess which model-home features will work nicely in your dream home. Is a breakfast nook as idyllic in practice as it is in theory? At a certain point, can a ceiling be too high? Sometimes you’ll need to see a feature in-person to form a final opinion. Look out for regional home tours or “parades” in your area. The intel you gain will be invaluable.
Choose The Right Builder
Not all home builders will have the same pros or cons. Oftentimes, the stylistic and procedural differences between them are significant. Ask around, and look for reviews online to help inform your opinion. Once you think you’ve found the right builder for you, reach out to them, and inquire about a probable timeline for completion.
You’re going to want a strong working relationship with the builder. Treat the early meetings like any other courtship, sounding them out for trustworthiness and their ability to deliver on your demands.
Don’t Be Afraid To Bring Your Own Plans
A building company might offer its own designs, but that doesn’t mean you have to go with them. Because this is your dream house, you can call the shots with your own house plans. You can even outsource your house plans to a third party.
Design companies and architects can create separate plans that you can, then, present to the builder. These companies will also give you the opportunity to tweak the plans, allowing you to execute your dream house to a tee.
Get Changes To The Plan In Writing
If you’re not completely happy with the plans, you don’t have to sit back and watch your home spiral into a vision that isn’t your own. You’re the client here, and you have the right to make alterations.
Maybe you want a door moved a bit to the left or a water pipe included on the other wall of a bathroom. You can make these changes, but you need to let the builder know. A quick verbal exchange with a lower-level employee is not enough to ensure the changes happen. It is best to get these changes in writing, so they’re plain to see and exist on record. That way, you can hold the company accountable if they don’t implement your requested changes.
Complete A Thorough Inspection Before Signing Off On Your Completed House
Once the house is completed, you might be eager to sign your name on the dotted line and move-in as quickly as possible. Be careful, and remember that speeding through a contract can have potentially-devastating repercussions.
Have the home carefully inspected to make sure nothing is amiss. Once you’ve confirmed there aren’t any issues, you can sign any pertinent paperwork with confidence.
Your home-in-the-making can be a culmination of your design preferences, visions for the future, and all of your lifelong dreams. With this in mind, building a home isn’t a place for shortcuts. Take these steps to ensure you’re getting the most out of this exciting, once-in-a-lifetime process and ending up with a finished product you’re proud of.