What to Expect When Getting Started on Your Custom Home

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What to Expect When Getting Started on Your Custom Home

Earlier this year we wrapped up a series on home construction called “New Home Planning“.  It covered everything from site planning to siding options.

Today we are going to dive into home construction again and the custom home building process. There are many great resources available to anyone who is building a new custom homes, and we’ve narrowed some of them down for you, to give you a jump start.

Getting Started

Building a custom home is a big project, probably one of the most time consuming and expensive efforts you will take part in.  There are many reasons for wanting to build a custom home.  According to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) people building custom homes want to create a multigenerational home that can be enjoyed for many years.  People are also more concerned about universal design that allows owners to age in place.  Other concerns that lead to custom home building is an interest in green building or incorporating the latest amenities.


It is important to understand your reason for building a new custom home so that you can work with your architect, builder and designer to put together a suitable plan.  In our blog series “New Home Planning” step 3 is “Deciding on a Floor Plan and Desgining for How your Live”.  This is a very important step in the custom home process because it will provide a blueprint for your site plan, home design and architecture, exterior and interior features.

One of the first things you should do when thinking about your custom home is to make a list of your top 10 most important attributes for the home.  Have you dreaming of a chef’s kitchen with walk in pantry and breakfast bar?  Do visions of a state of the art theatre dance in your head?   Right it down.  And it doesn’t always have to be big.  Perhaps you are expecting a new child and you know what you a nursury near the master bedroom or a laundry shoot outside the bedroom door.

If you are building with a partner, family members, or friends, all parties should come up with their own list.  This will easily help you identify early on what the top priorities are based on what shows up on both lists.  Then you also know early on what needs to be prioritized from the items that only showed up on one list.  For more information read about 5 Ways to Create Iconic Interiors and Avoid a Battle of Sexes.


In addition to creating your written wish list, it is very common to develop a digital wish list.  Mobile apps are a big help in this day and age and they can help you uncover unique kitchen designs, furniture, engineered wood flooring and solid wood flooring  and window options…just to name a few.   If you are looking to get started exploring mobile apps for interior design start here because we’ve narrowed it down for you. If you aren’t inclined to technology, a standard 3-ring binder will do too.  Fill it with magazine clippings of all your favorite stuff.

Whatever your collection method, use the time prior to starting construction to understand what you want.  It might be a certain style front door, or kitchen cabinet, paint color or wood floor.  Maybe you have specific ideas about landscaping or outbuilding like a garage or tool shed.

Although these items are not something you will install until later in the process they can have a big impact on the construction process, so it is important to plan ahead.

Pinterest and Houzz.com are also becoming go-to sources for interior and exterior design ideas.


We pose this more as a question then a statement because every homeowner has different priorities when it comes to selecting green features for their home.

For some, energy efficient appliances and lighting is plenty to appease their environmental woes.  For others you may have a very sophisicated heating and cooling or water preservation system in mind.   Or may be as simple as installing hardwood flooring in your home rather than carpet for the health benefits.

Know what is important so yor architect or builder can incorporate this into your plans.  It can have a large impact on the overall budget for your home.  And if you are wavering between options price them both to ensure you make an informed decision.

You can find out ways to create an efficient at home here.

Next week we will look at topics of hiring a builder an architect before you get started on your dream home.

Are you building a home?  What was the “getting started” process like for you?  Did you make a list and was it helpful?

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