Answers to Some Common Questions
Approaching a project without a budget is a slippery slope. With custom homes, the upgrade possibilities are almost endless. You might make one upgrade here and another there, and before you know it you’ve added $100,000 to the project. It’s always a good to set a rough budget before you start planning. Give yourself a range, but know your maximum. It also helps to prioritize your wish list. If something has to give, what will it be? Can you give up the gourmet range? Can you live for a few years with an unfinished basement?
Unless you have a ton of cash in the bank, you’ll have to fund your dream home with a loan. New home financing is a little trickier than existing home financing because there are more options. There are temporary construction loans that convert into permanent mortgages and those that don’t, in which case you’ll have to secure a separate mortgage loan after construction is complete and pay two sets of closing costs. Research your options in advance to figure out what makes the most sense for you. Keep in mind that construction loans are not as readily available as they once were, particularly because they’re considered riskier than existing home loans. You’ll be able to get a loan if you have good credit, but expect to put 20 percent down.
How often have you heard construction horror stories? We all know that choosing a reputable builder or design-build firm is important, but people still forget to invest time into researching the company’s background. Always ask for references - and check them. Check the company’s rating with the Better Business Bureau. Find out how long the company has been in business and make sure they are licensed and insured.
When you’re working with a custom builder, communication is key to making sure the home that is built meets your expectations. A reputable builder will keep you informed at every step in the process, but never assume you know everything. Not sure if you’ve designated enough storage space? Ask to review the plans and discuss your options. Worried that the countertops you chose might clash with the cabinets? Ask the designer or builder for a second opinion. The last thing you want is to regret not speaking up.
Along the same lines, the more involved you are throughout the design and building process, the happier you will be with the end result. When you’re building a custom home, chances are this is a place you plan to call home for a long time. Participate in the planning of the layout and the selection of materials and finishings. Any reputable contractor or design & build firm will appreciate—and seek—your input.
Good question! Though many of the homes we build are in excess of $1M, we are also quite busy in the $350–750k market. Custom does not necessarily mean expensive. Think of the process as you would utilizing a London tailor—we are here to create the perfect fit for your family and lifestyle. The materials you choose will drive the majority of the cost in the project. We will advise you on how to get the most value from your budget. If you have a vision of features you wish to incorporate, images from magazines, etc.. A trusted custom builder like Cambridge Building, Inc. will be invaluable in bringing it all together, and within budget.
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