Post # 1
I’ve been looking for a bit, but I haven’t seen any threads about people building their own home. FI and I are lucky enough to be able to do this, but being a first time home buyer/builder we’re completely new to it. I was wondering if there was anyone out there who has been or is going through the process. I’m really not sure what to expect, and right now it just feels like a lot of waiting to me…
Post # 3
We built our first home when we got married! It is definetly NOT the same as buying a home for sure. Different terms, processes etc. I will have to say ours was very well planned and executed by our builder. They as well as DH family who has built 2 homes; were very helpful to us.
Post # 4
We built our first home through a “cookie cutter” home builder – you find a neighborhood, tour the model home, pick a lot, pick your floor plan, pick your finishes and then they build it. It sounded fantastic on paper – I would get a brand new house exactly as I wanted it. Only, it didn’t really turn out that way. It was really stressful and I cried a lot. We had a lot of trouble with our particular builder, and we came very close to walking away right before the final inspection. If I were to do it again, here’s my advice:
1) Research heavily and do not limit your search too much. If your heart is set on a particular neighborhood, and there are only one or two builders to choose from, it can be very frustrating. We were completely boxed in because the neighborhood only featured one builder and we had no other options. The company knew they could get away with treating people like crap because there was no real competition. We should have looked at a neighborhood that was only five minutes away, but we were so focused on that area of town we really limited ourselves. I see the floor plans and other offerings by the builders in the other neighborhood and I have a bit of regret.
2) Use a realtor. We thought because we were buying directly from a home builder we didn’t need one. That really bit us in the you-know-what. We needed an advocate. The builder made several mistakes and we had to fight hard to get some things corrected. Other things (like the kitchen backsplash) were completely wrong and they refused to change it.
3) Be diligent about looking at the house every chance you get. We were at our house every weekend. DH would take an hour or two looking at every possible detail. That was how we caught several mistakes.
Overall, I’m glad we have a home that is new and was basically what we wanted. I’m sad that I already have a laundry list of items I want to change, but I think that would have happened even if we had just purchased a home instead of built it. Good luck with your decision!
Post # 5
DH’s family built their own. FIL designed and planned it and even helped build. There are some issues related to its design that have caused problems, just because he wasn’t a professional architect, but as a whole that house has been going strong for more than 30 years. Go for it–heeding PPs’ very knowledgable advice.
Post # 6
We bought a house two years ago, but we’re in the process of looking for a lot to build on in the next 5ish years. My dad is a designer/builder, so I always grew up in new construction and we want to use the floor plan (if we can, depending on the subdivision) from one of the houses from my childhood.
I envy anyone who can build! It’s a great experience!
Post # 7
To edit my post and add on to what to Piccateer went through. We did not build in a development and have had friends do so and have occured some of the same issues Piccateer did. Not saying building in a development is bad. We had our own land and chose a custom builder. We were given the freedom to change things throughout the entire process and we did. During one of our weekly walk throughs I didn’t like the layout of some of the lighting placement predrywall phase. The electricians came in and changed it all.. We had full control over the process unless it went against our county’s codes. We also had different process than most because we were so far out in the country that we don’t have typical septic and water systems and different plans had to be drawn up for those.
Post # 8
Thank you, thank you, thank you everyone for the advice! We actually already have 3 acres, and a pseudo blue print. Right now we’re waiting for the builder to finish up the plans and list of supplies so that we can submit it to our mortgage broker. We were pre-approved for an FHA loan–not the greatest option, but it let’s us put the bare minimum down, which is nice.
But for now, we’re waiting…I’m TERRIBLE at waiting–especially for others.
Post # 9
Well. I literally am going through the process and spent the last 4hrs finalising things for our house.
Im talking about choosing bricks, roof, guters,piping,tiles, cabinets, taps, bath, sink,wardrobe designs, colour of window trims, showers, pavers, front door, handles, indoor doors with the builder this afternoon, electrical layouts, skirting.. it just keeps on going!
We went to a mortgage broker
- found out what we could afford..
- saved a little..
- went hunting for a block.
- Found the block.
- Put an offer on it.
- saved some more
- Offer got accepted subject to finance.
- Got my mum (whose an architect) to design a house (took about 3-4 weeks)
- found a builder
- Got a builders contract saying subject to finance approval
- submitted it to for finance approval as we are doing house and land package. So therefore only requiring one deposit
- got finance approval
- signed bucketloads of paper
- got settlement date
- submitted plans to council
- recieved application from electrical company for builders electrics
- applied for crossover permission of kerbing with the City.
- applied for first home owners grant (we get 7k from the government as we are first home owners- the government gives you bonus for building)
- left the buying of the block in the capable hands of our settlement agent
- started choosing things for the house as stipulated in the addenda (building contract) (bricks to roof colour, taps, window trimmings, doors, garage, stove etc etc etc
- made more choices out of the addenda
Thats where we are at now.. things we have to do still!
Only thing we havent decide is colour of our tiles, doing that saturday and carpet and painting colours
Wait for council approval of plan.
Wait for settlement and cash to be handed over on 21 June with the possibility of owning the land on 16 june.
Then… we start building!!
I will let you know the next stage when its all finalised though we are just doing it stage by stage 🙂
Atm im pretty exhausted by it all!