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Read articles that will help you decide on your next renovation.

Pertinent Questions To Ask Your New Home Builder

Constructing a home from the ground up is a big challenge. There are a lot of factors that you need to consider ranging from the choice of land, quality and design, materials, features etc. If you are thinking of building a new home there are certain questions you need to ask your new homebuilder so as to ensure you are both on the same page. Asking questions can clarify a lot of things and can also get rid of some misconceptions you have. It also helps the building process because you are in essence establishing good communication. Here are some pertinent questions to ask your new homebuilder.

Can I See Some Home Models For Review?

Prior to selecting a new homebuilder you need to be able to see the work they have done in the past so you can have a good idea on the quality of the design and the materials. Ask if you can review several models so you can also get inspiration on the kind of home you want. Make sure they provide information on 1 story, 1.5 story and 2 story homes so you can have a good idea on what you might prefer.

Any Experience in the Area?

Building a home in your area means the builder should have significant experience on the lay of the land including the kind of soil you will build your home on. Keep in mind also that building in different cities and municipalities means having to deal with different neighborhoods and possibly weather conditions too. It is important that the new homebuilder you choose is quite well versed on the terrain as well as the different quirks in the area you’re interested to build.

Can I See Your License And Insurance Certification?

If there are any questions to ask a prospective new homebuilder, this is probably one of the most important. All builders should have the necessary license and insurance coverage. These are necessary to demonstrate their expertise and professionalism. Licenses are a necessity as they are issued subject to having the correct bond requirements. A bond is an assurance that is issued by the builder in order to guarantee that they can carry out the job expectations that have been discussed about in the contract. What this means is that if the builder provides a poor job or is negligent, you can be paid for any damages that may happen.

Moreover, any legitimate builder should have the necessary insurance coverage. This is a standard requirement. Those that do not have this, better walk away. Insurance provides protection should there be an accident resulting to injuries or damage to property during the process of homebuilding.

Questions To Ask When The Home Building Process Has Begun

Pertinent Questions You Need To Ask A Home Builder

Once builder selection is finalized, the homebuilding process begins. Here are some important questions to ask your new homebuilder during the process.

What Occurs During Final Walkthrough?

This is the phase where the homebuilder ensures the quality of the structures by performing a final walkthrough once construction on the new home is done. This is the part where you can address any last clarifications you may have regarding your new home.

How to track material and labor costs?

When constructing a new home, it is not uncommon for plans to change during the process. Your needs and budget might change, which in turn will require changes to the labor and material costs. Be sure to ask your new homebuilder about how they keep track of expenses and how often they need to issue invoices to their clients. There are some homebuilders that will ask for a down payment at the start and then demand payment for the remaining balance upon completion. There are also others that charge clients on a regular basis as they incur costs during the homebuilding process. It is important that you have a full understanding of the payment structure of the homebuilder so you can be better prepared in providing payments.

How To Design A Smart Home

How to design a smart home

With technology today getting more sophisticated, it is no wonder that tech for homes have also evolved through the years. There are a lot of tech companies today that create and market products for use in the home making living in houses equipped with “smart” technology more energy efficient, safer and more useful. Here are some tips on how to design a “smart” home.

Home Automation

You can ask your new homebuilder to integration home automation technology into your home. Home automation basically lets you control your home’s basic features using a device or an app on your phone. Home automation can make your home more secure and can make regular tasks easier to accomplish. A well-designed home automation system offers several components that allow the system to work together in unison. Normally, it calls for at least a single programmed computer, devices that are controlled by that computer and wireless links or interconnecting cables. The system also requires stable Internet as well as an emergency back-up system.

A good home automation system is the central feature of any “smart” home. There are a lot of things you can do with this setup to make your home function like a living organism keeping you and your family safer and use energy more efficiently.

Lighting Control

This is a popular smart home feature. Advanced lighting can be controlled using an app on your phone with the purpose of turning on or off the lights in your house with a single push of a button. This is also the same app you can use to dim or adjust your lighting to just the right level. Your lights can also be preprogrammed to change depending on the time of day or even season. They can be controlled remotely. For instance, you are away on vacation and discovered that you have left the lights on in the kitchen. Using home automation technology, you can just launch an app on your phone to determine if indeed those lights are on and turn them off remotely.

Temperature Control

Also, in addition to lighting, home automation can assist you in controlling the thermostat. Gaining constant access and control over your home’s temperature can provide you and your family with the ultimate comfort. It can also help in reducing your utility costs.

Take Entertainment to the Next Level

You can also integrate a fully automated home entertainment system that can be controlled using your smartphone. With this technology, you can get rid of all remote controls and just use a single app on your phone to control your TV, gaming systems and home theater system.

Whole House Audio

If you love music, why not have the ability to listen to music all throughout your home. Smart technology can incorporate stereo speakers and the ability to control them all in a single device. You can have music on full blast in the kitchen while making dinner and off in your baby’s room while he is sleeping. You can also get some background music and ambient sounds going on while you work in your home office.

Better Security

Smart technology’s best selling points are of course in the realm of security in order to make your home more secure against intruders. Smart cameras can be placed in different areas of your home and then stream video to a single device. You can also check the camera feed anytime even if you are halfway around the world. This provides you with more confidence to ensure everyone in your home is safe and secure. Motion sensors placed on strategic areas and designed to be turned on at certain times of the night can set off a silent alarm to protect your family. Talk to your new homebuilder today about the different features available to be integrated in your new home.

Five Luxurious Additions Your Custom Home Builder Can Recommend For Your Custom Home

If you have the means, the addition of luxury features is a nice touch and advantageous in many ways for your custom home. Using the best available products, technology and materials to design and build your home, you can make a nice sanctuary for your entire family that will absolutely be perfect. These features will improve every aspect of your home from the bottom up. They can include upgrading the interior, expanding the square footage and the establishment of a gourmet kitchen that might make most professional chefs quite envious.

Gourmet Luxury Kitchens

If you are the kind of person that enjoys cooking and entertaining guests in your home, the addition of a gourmet kitchen is definitely a plus factor. Send your evening dinner and brunches to the next level by having your custom homebuilder design you a luxury gourmet kitchen.

Essential features to have are:

  • Top-of-the-line appliances and industrial-strength ventilation. Some of the appliances may include a professional-grade range, double oven, convection microwave and drawer, warming drawer and a dishwasher drawer
  • Lots of storage space and a walk-in pantry
  • Top quality countertop materials like quartz which are an excellent choice as they do not require any sealing and are less porous compared to natural stone
  • Up to 4x the amount of lighting compared to a typical kitchen which can include task lighting that concentrates light on a specific work space
  • A couple of island areas for more counter space
  • Above lighting for cabinetry
  • Lighting below toe kick
  • A variety of sinks for food prep and cleanup
  • Full-height stone backsplash
  • Generous kitchen layout

Indoor Sport Courts

This is best for folks that are physically active and enjoy sports. The main advantages of having your very own indoor sports court are: being able to play all year round regardless of weather, kids do not have to leave the house just to practice, can have people over to play, a perfect way to relieve stress at the beginning or end of your work day.

In Home Theaters

For movie buffs, having your own in-home theater can be a dream come true. What better way to indulge in your favorite hobby than by actually getting the feel of a real movie theater without having to leave your house? By getting a home theater you can have a more relaxed viewing atmosphere as you can kick back and do whatever you prefer without having to follow any rules in the cinema. You no longer have to waste time traveling to and from your local cinema as you can do everything right in the comfort of your own custom home. You also save money on tickets and snacks and choose your own films. Home theaters are considered timeless additions to any custom home as they provide a perfect area for family to bond and spend quality time together.

Wine Cellar

A wine cellar for your custom home is a great addition

If you are the type of person that is into wine, what better way to indulge your wine fantasies than having your very own wine cellar constructed in your custom home. Your custom homebuilder can provide you with excellent recommendations in ensuring your precious wine collection stay fresh and get better with age. This is something any wine aficionado should have.

Wine cellars can prevent your wine from spoiling, can allow you to get more organized with your collection and offer a huge space to store big quantities of wine.

Expansion of Outdoor Living Spaces

Some of the cool luxury additions include outdoor kitchens, waterfalls, swimming pool, changing cabanas and hot tubs. By expanding your outdoor living space you are also able to maximize every square inch of your lot area, strengthen connection with Mother Nature and the ability to entertain outdoors even if the weather is not that all good. Talk to your custom homebuilder today for more information about these amazing ideas.

Guide On How To Avoid Common Mistakes During New Home Construction

Checking out floor plans

There is no doubt that constructing your new home is an exciting moment in your life. However, it is also a very delicate one at that. It is probably the biggest investment you will ever make in your life and you want it to be as pain free as possible and even better outstanding result. Truth be told, for some homeowners the process of constructing a new home has become nightmare. The issue being the fact that these homeowners jumped into a complicated process without taking the time to think things through or look for an experienced and reliable new homebuilder. Here is a short but definitive guide on how to avoid the common mistakes people make when doing new home construction.

Hiring Builders Without Doing Due Diligence

They might have found a pretty convincing ad on the Internet, TV or radio. The price seemed too good to be true. They begin thinking that this is the moment they’ve been waiting for. Only to find out that the new homebuilder they’ve chosen is not only inexperienced but also uninsured. They are left with a project unfinished and not up to par with even the most basic construction standards. How to avoid this? Perform due diligence on your new homebuilder. Do a background check; ask for references and check whether or not what they are claiming is the truth. It is pretty easy to create a website and fill it with beautiful pictures of finished homes and pass it off as their own. Do not be fooled easily with outlandish claims and low prices. Follow the simple advice: if it is too good to be true, it probably is. Unless proven otherwise.

Signing Up With The Lowest Bidder

Any aspiring homeowner would love to save money on something as big as a home construction project. However, if you are thinking of constructing a new home and not come to terms with the simple truth that it is going to cost a considerable amount of money, chances are you are going to just take the lowest bid and hope for the best. This is a recipe for disaster. Lowest bids means the builder might be taking short cuts on the quality of materials and workmanship leaving you with a home with substandard plumbing, lighting and roofing. Never compromise the safety of your family by attempting to save a few dollars. Make sure to have a good discussion with your new homebuilder regarding the quality of materials and workmanship.

Scaling Down On Quality

This is very similar to the item above. Some homeowners start right as they choose good quality materials but end up later on insisting for cheaper ones instead. Keep in mind that low quality materials depreciate within a very short period and you will end up with more costs on repair and renovations down the road.

No Buffer For The Budget

There is no doubt that in any new home construction project, the budget is one of the biggest factors if not the biggest factor to consider. However, another important aspect that many homeowners neglect to consider is the buffer. In any new home construction project, unexpected things happen. Prices of materials rise and fall, some affordable materials may not be available or out of stock etc. You have to anticipate for these things. A professional new homebuilder knows how to make a budget that can account for these unanticipated conditions. You need to communicate with your builder to ensure that there are enough funds available should it be necessary.

Making Lots Of Changes After Plans Are Completed

One of the factors that can inflate costs dearly is late alterations. Regardless if it is a minor or a major change you want, please do so early enough prior to the final phase of your new home construction is completed in order to avoid huge repair costs.

5 Factors When Building on Your Own Land

Empty Lakeshore Lot In Minnesota

If you are thinking of building a custom home, you have the creative freedom to decide what it feels and looks like. Constructing a custom home on your own land provides you with the opportunity to edit floor plan based on your needs. You can choose fixtures, the layout of the room and the view you would prefer from every side of the home.  Here are 5 factors your custom homebuilder will recommend when building on your own land.

It’s all about Location

When it comes to homes be it custom or not, it really is all about location. There are a number of factors to consider. Collaborating with a custom homebuilder can help guarantee you are getting the best possible land and price for the home you want to build.

Factors to consider when looking for the perfect spot to build your custom home include:

  • Commuting distance from home and work
  • School district
  • Type of community you would like to live in
  • How you would enjoy the land around you
  • Whether the area will hold or gain more value in the future
  • Zoning laws in your area
  • Whether the land is suitable to build on
  • Type of soil you are building on

View You Want to See Everyday

If you are looking for land to build your custom home you might want to take into consideration the view you would want to wake up to everyday. You might be the kind of person that wants to have some privacy from your neighbors or the type that does not mind waving from your window across the street.  The 3 most important factors when it comes to home view are: placement of the home in relation to the sun, what area of the home you want your neighbor to see, views you prefer in each room.

The Exterior Style of the Custom Home

Your custom homebuilder will recommend different styles for your home exterior and can also recommend styles and materials that can compliment the land’s surroundings.  Some of the popular home styles that you can look up online are: colonial, contemporary, modern, Victorian, ranch, Cape Cod, Craftsman, Tudor, farmhouse and cottage.

Wherever the location of your lot, the exterior portion of your home should match the lot’s feel and look in order to achieve the best cohesion. Your custom homebuilder can help provide you with the best recommendations.

Best Possible Floor Plan

In the homebuilding industry, there is really no shortage of ideas. You can choose current floor plans that are designed to meet your needs or you can customize your own with the assistance of a professional. Different lots are better suited for certain types of floor plans.  When selecting a floor plan you need to consider how much space you require for the home, the number of bedrooms for you, your kids and or guests, type of play space the kids will have or whether you prefer an open or compartmentalized floor plan.  The great thing about custom homebuilding is there are no set parameters to follow. You can decide to build your home with any floor plan and style you prefer. Your custom homebuilder can assist you to get the most out of your chosen floor plan.

Maximizing Space on Your Land

Your custom homebuilder can provide you with ideas on how to maximize the available space on your land by adding outdoor amenities and features like a patio or garden, establishment of a fenced area for kids or pets, kind of landscaping your prefer, water features such as pond or pool. Your custom homebuilder can offer you all the information your require. Call one today.

 

Welcome to WIBuildeer.com. my name is Tracy and I am the senior staff writer for the Williams & Ivy Builder website. I have over 15 years of experience in home building, remodeling and DYI projects. Myself, along with the other writers on staff share our experiences, tips and tricks for anything related to your home. Wether buying, building, remodeling or maintaining…we have you covered.