The building process

How to Build a Custom Home: Our 8-Step Guide

There’s nothing like the feeling of coming home to a space completely customized to your liking. From choosing land to designing home plans and watching the build take shape, a custom home build is a rewarding process.

For those lucky enough to be considering a custom home build, it’s a MUST to fully understand the building process and the steps to make your dream a reality.  Here are some general steps you can expect on your custom home-building journey. 

Step One: Preparation

preparation is the most important step of the custom home-building process. Before contacting a home builder, it is important to break down your budget and building time frames to determine if building a home is right for you.

Things to consider include:

  • Land cost
  • Local taxes, permits, and fees
  • Home builder and construction costs
  • Landscaping costs
  • Home furnishing costs
  • Mortgage and loan payments
  • Initial down payment
  • Padding (money set aside for unexpected costs during the build)

This budget breakdown can assist in deciding the size, locations, and land you can afford for your new home. Also, you should note the build timeframe and if you have specific needs for your family. Which means finding and buying your land, end-of-home leases, schools, new family members, and more.

If you are still looking for the type of custom home build you want, our Custom Home Designs page is a recommended resource for guiding your home build process. 

Step Two: Choosing A Custom Home Builder

Before starting your custom home building journey and rushing into a decision, it is important to research home builders and find one that meets your needs. 

Research online by looking for the home builder’s experience, custom home expertise, and previously completed projects to get an idea of their capabilities and expected outcomes for your custom home build. This helps set your expectations for your future home with this builder. 

For example, at G.J. Gardner Homes, our expert custom home builders and new home consultants are readily available at our showrooms. This saves you the trouble of gathering a custom home-building team with a group of third-party contractors. Just attend an initial consultation to find out what you want. We can help create design plans, get permits, and find land. 

Step Three: Design Your Dream Home

Great, you now have a home builder and secured your land. It is time to start drawing up your dream home design and future floor plan. For your first consultation with your home builder, it is important to bring to the meeting a list of wants and needs with a level of importance in mind.

Consider the following:

  • Number of bedrooms and bathrooms
  • Garage size
  • Room arrangements and preferred floor plan layouts
  • Overall size of the home
  • How many stories are in the home
  • Budget
  • Architectural and interior design style
  • Negotiable inclusions (e.g. pool, covered patio, fireplaces, wine cellar, media room)

Alternatively, if you don’t want to start your home design from scratch, Your builder should have existing home design plans to choose from and further customize.

After the first meeting, your home builder will draw up custom home design plans into a floor plan with an estimated price for a custom home build. We call this a purchase agreement. Once you review the documents, you can provide feedback and make any changes you want.  

Step Four: Obtain Financing

You’ve completed the home floor plan and cost estimations, it is time to talk about how you will finance your home build. You can finance with a construction loan, cash, or a combination. 

This is only a suggestion, but if you plan to get financing through a third party, speak to your local lender or mortgage broker to find the best options available.

Step Five: Finishes & Fixtures

Arguably the best part of the design process, it’s now time to select your preferred finishes and fixtures. Meaning,  countertops, flooring, hardware, lighting, windows, trim, cabinetry, and more. Your builder should walk you through depending on how much you want to customize. 

Step Six: Construction Starts

The construction and building phase can begin once the final floor plan and purchase agreement are signed and settled. You can expect the following:

  • Site clearing and preparation
  • Foundations, framing, and roof
  • Utility installation
  • Insulation and drywall
  • Flooring, lighting, paint and millwork
  • Fixtures and appliances
  • Finish work such as final paint, wall coverings, trim
  • Landscaping

This is such an exciting time in your custom home build journey as you can see your plans come to life physically!

Step Seven: Final Walk-Through

After we complete the home, you will do a final walk-through. It is your opportunity to inspect and ask questions before the official closing of your home. 

Step Eight: Closing The Home

Following your final walk-through and closing, your home builder will hand over the keys to your new home.

At G.J. Gardner Homes, we specialize in custom home builds with extensive experience in creating tailored home solutions nationwide. If you are thinking about a custom home build, a semi-custom, or just looking to learn more our team is here to help you experience the joy of home building.

Want to learn more? Contact our home design experts today by visiting our website or calling our team.