Custom Building Process
Although we also bid on homes for clients, we primarily take a different approach to the building process than most builders.
We developed our approach to the building process through years of experience, trial and error and after hearing countless “horror stories” about other custom projects.
It is very important that a person does their homework when selecting a builder. You should check references, look at past projects, and evaluate experience, knowledge and expertise. The builder also needs to be someone you can get along with and communicate with since many projects can last up to a year with design and construction. It is important that you establish a reasonable budget and have a fairly clear set of expectations.
The following is a general step by step list of the process.
Step #1 – Decide where to build
If you do not already own your lot we can assist in finding the right location for your family based on each family’s individual needs. We have an extensive knowledge of the Central Texas area and available property.
Step #2 – The Budget
After the site has been selected we visit the site with you to determine the work that must be done on site in conjunction with the home construction. We also discuss any other improvements the client may want done. We establish an estimate of what all of the site improvements might cost with the exception of the house itself. Such items typically include site grading, brush removal, septic systems, water well/meter, swimming pool, roads, topsoil, fencing, irrigation, and landscaping. Basically everything else that must be done on the site if you could set the house off to the side. These items obviously vary in cost from site to site. We then discuss the client’s wants and needs in a home. We discuss size, design style, amenities, systems, energy efficiency, etc.
After a site visit and discussion about the type of home a client desires we can figure out if the client’s budget is adequate. This is also the time when the client is qualified for their permanent mortgage. We can recommend several excellent mortgage companies if needed.
Step #3 – The Initial Contract
Once the client has checked our record and our references and we have established that their budget and their desires match, we are ready to do the initial contract and begin the design process. The initial contract is a general guideline of what we are trying to accomplish. It will explain the size of the home, the design style, amenities, allowances, tentative schedule, and cost.
Step #4 – Designing the Home
Although we are open to working with other designers, we are fortunate to have an excellent working relationship with our preferred designer and have developed a very successful and streamlined design process. We work together with the client through a series of meetings until the entire set of plans are complete to the satisfaction of the client. The architect even has state of the art 3D modeling software which is great for those who have trouble picturing what something looks like on a set of plans.
Step #5 – Specifications
When the plans are complete we start working on specifications. This is when we actually pick out everything that is going in the home, such as brick, stone, stucco, roof, floors, plumbing fixtures, doors, trim, hardware, etc.
We make these specifications part of the final plans so that the client knows exactly what they are getting and exactly what the cost is before construction begins.
Step #6 – Final Contract & Construction Loan
When the plans and specs are complete we execute the final contract which includes the approved plans and specs as an attachment. The final contract includes the final price and schedule as well. We also coordinate the construction financing at this time with the client at a local bank.
Step #7 – Building the House
When the construction loan is complete we begin construction. Progress draws are made from the construction loan twice monthly based on the percentage of completion of the home. We are happy to meet at the jobsite anytime during the construction process.
Step #8 – Completion & Loan Closing
When the home is complete, inspected, and ready for occupancy the client will close on their mortgage. The money from the mortgage goes to pay off the construction loan, and the client starts making mortgage payments just the same as when you buy a house.
As always, I am more than happy to sit down face to face and explain this entire process in more detail as well as answer any questions. Please contact Dustin at 254-289-0052.