I really can't believe it. The Home of Possibilities is coming to an end. It's been a pleasure hosting so many of you during the open period. It's been hard to even count how many have come through our doors but we know it's close to 2,000! We've raised funds for Ronald McDonald House Charities of Mid-Missouri through the variety of events that have been held in the Home. Our vendor partners have showcased some outstanding products through one-on-one interaction with guests. It's been a great experience!
Ready for YOUR Home of Possibilities?
Rusty's enjoyed talking with prospective clients about their projects during the Open Houses. He often gets questions about the custom building process and so I thought I'd take a few minutes and address some common topics.
Custom vs. Production
With so many builder options available, it can get overwhelming when selecting your ideal builder. Consumers had questions about the difference between a custom builder and, well, the others. It's really custom or production and there are benefits to both types. The National Association of Home Builders has a handy comparison between the two types of of builders. According to the NAHB:
Custom home builders generally:
- Build on land you own. Some custom builders also build on land they own.
- Build one-of-a-kind houses. A custom home is a site-specific home built from a unique set of plans for a specific client. Some custom builders may offer design/build services.
- Build single-family homes.
- Are generally small-volume builders (those that build 25 or fewer homes a year).
- Tend to build high-end homes
Production home builders generally:
- Build on land they own.
- Tend to use stock plans, but usually offer a variety of plan choices and options.
- Build all types of housing — single-family, condos, town houses, and rental properties.
- Are large-volume builders (those that build more than 25 homes a year).
- Generally build for all price points — entry level, move up, luxury, etc.
These are obviously generalizations but they paint a fairly accurate picture of the differences you'll find among builders in Columbia, MO, and the custom builder category is definitely where Rusty and Smarr Custom Homes belongs.
Custom Costs Too Much
Rusty has been amazed at the number of clients who've built a production home in the past because they assumed a custom home would be too expensive then built custom and are pleasantly surprised by the overall cost of the project. It's really about choices and control and those things lie with you, the customer, in a custom build. You determine your priorities, your splurges, your savings, your budget. Rusty works with you to understand your dreams and expectactions and then works with you throughout the process to help ensure that you stay on time, on target and on budget. We can build an entry home for $115 per sq. ft to more elaborate homes at $200 per sq. ft.
Where Would I Even Start?
Simply getting started on a big project can be one of the biggest hurdles to success and that's certainly the case with home building! Here are a few suggestions to help get your project off to a smooth start.
- Determine your essentials. What are your non-negotiables? School district? Floor plan details? A massive garage to house your car collection? Whatever they are, it's important to understand the items that are truly essential to your project as you move forward. They will help you shape your floor plan, budget and overall satisfaction with your home.
- Fantasize. Now that you've got your essentials in place, dream big! What are those things that would make your home amazing. Make a list, build a board on Pinterest, make a folder. It's fun to see everything in one place and it helps you see if your choices are working together.
- Do a drive by. Take a drive through some neighborhoods to get a sense of where you might like to live. Try it at different times of day to get a sense of the dynamics of the neighborhood.
- Browse. The Web is chock full of information about building homes. It can become an overwhelming sea of house plans, floor coverings, light fixtures if you let it. Don't. Just browse. Look for inspiration for your new home on the Web or in magazines or wherever you can find it. This will help you get a sense of your style and preferences.
- Get on the same page. It's important that everyone who'll be making decisions about the home building process get on the same page about the items listed above. You and your partner don't have to love all the same details but it's important that one isn't committed to French Chateau style and the other a Frank Lloyd Wright aficionado.
- Do the numbers. Just like any home purchase, you need to know your limits. Understand your financial comfort zone (as well as your lender's.)
- Start the conversation. Set down with a building professional to talk about the items outlined above. It will really help them get a sense of your goals and overall project.
This is definitely not a comprehensive overview of the building process. It's meant to give you a few insights I hope will bolster your confidence and inspire you to explore your own custom project. Don't get me wrong, there are lots of decisions and choices to be made but a custom home project is an exciting and rewarding one!
Hope to hear from you soon! ~Kristen