The Real Estate Encyclopedia
What Are the Pitfalls When Building a Home?
Category - Home Ownership Questions - Building Your Home FAQ's
The greatest challenge, by far, when building your own home is to stay within your budget. It is very easy to begin upgrading details in your home, not realizing the impact each upgrade has on the overall cost.

Your best bet is to carefully examine your builder’s estimates and identify every allowance included. Typically, a builder will include allowances for light fixtures, appliances, interior and exterior paint, molding, carpet, hardwood floors, etc. Bathroom fixtures, such as mirrors, paper holders, towel racks, etc., may not be included in the builder’s estimates. Make sure you ask your builder what, exactly, is included and who his/her suppliers are for plumbing fixtures, light fixtures, carpet, etc.

The builder typically works with certain stores and you would be wise to visit the stores and identify what type and quality the allowance provided by the builder will cover. This will give you an excellent idea of where you might potentially exceed your budget and plan for it.

Another challenge to build your own home is to find the best builder, at the best rate. The builder’s history and reputation is critical. You must have an excellent rapport with the builder and feel you can ask questions any time. You also need to check how creative the builder is. Do not expect the builder to provide suggestions, if he or she is not the creative type. This does not mean you should not hire an excellent builder, who happens not to be creative. In this case, you will need additional help from an architect or designer to help you make the necessary changes (for example, the placement of deck railing, in order not to obstruct a beautiful view – you could design a deck with two levels in this case.)

Building your own home can also be very stressful. You may have another home to sell before the construction is complete. The weather may not cooperate and cause serious delays. You may sell your present home well before construction is complete, which leaves you with the need to find temporary housing.

You and your spouse must be aware that building is stressful and plan for it. You must also be in complete agreement on all details of the home, to avoid disputes during the construction on what the color scheme, finishes, fixtures, general feel (modern, traditional) you are striving for will be.

Careful and detailed planning is essential for a successful building project.
Home Ownership Questions - Building Your Home FAQ's
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