Here’s what you can expect from the home-building process.
With today’s limited inventory, you may need to build a home instead of buying one. How do you embark on the home-building process, though?
Your first step should be to reach out to an experienced Realtor who knows the area you’re interested in. You need to know who developed the area, where the schools are, who the builders in the area are, and what your price point would be. Then, take a walk through the neighborhood and get a feel of it—make sure you feel at home.
Make sure you’re pre-qualified before speaking to a builder. There are incentives to using their lender, but it’s always great to have your own lender and know what you qualify for. Oftentimes, your lender will be able to meet or beat what the builder’s lender is offering. Your Realtor should be able to help you find a good lender.
It’s easy to get excited when speaking with the builder because you get to pick all your upgrades, but make sure you know what those upgrades will cost you before signing a contract. They’ll cost you not just in terms of overall payment, but in product payoffs as well. You don’t want your home to be the most expensive one in the neighborhood; it should be in the middle or toward the lower end of the price range so you can be competitive with the rest of the area when it’s time to sell.
The job’s not done after you sign a contract, either. You need to stay in touch with the builder and walk through the house as it’s being built. No matter how skilled your builder and subcontractors are, they’ll make mistakes, and no one should know your house better than you do. That said, remember to be realistic and flexible with your timeline. We’ve had a lot of fires this year, and your builder may have a hard time getting lumber. If you use a big builder, they’ll likely buy their products in advance, but delays can still happen.
It’s always a good idea in this situation to get a home inspection. I know what you’re thinking: “It’s a new home—why would I get a home inspection?” Most builders appreciate this kind of thing because they use the inspection as a walk-through punch list. It’s similar to buying a car and tallying the list of add-ons so you know what you’re getting and paying for. You don’t want to close on your home only to find out that there’s no hot water because the water heater wasn’t turned on.
Building a house can be an exciting, fun process, and if you use the right Realtor, it’s a lot less stressful than trying to do it on your own. I’d be happy to be the one to guide you through your home build, so don’t hesitate to give me a call if you’re ready to get started. If you have any other real estate needs, feel free to reach out to me as well. I look forward to speaking with you.