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Old 11-20-2006, 06:11 PM   #1
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Building new home


We have decided to build our dream home next summer/fall. Anyone done this before? Any must have tips or warnings? Also, we'll be including a full basement, I know sq. footage doesn't count unless there is a walk-out, so how does that figure into the building cost? Are they the same as main floor costs?

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Old 11-20-2006, 07:02 PM   #2
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Just make sure no corner are cut. Basement make sure there is a interior and exterior perimeter drain system. Make sure the sump pump has battery backup. Make sure they use wood i beans hung off of joist hangers for floors. Make sure they use tongue and grove plywood on the floor glued and screwed down. Make sure you go with quality windows such as marvin. For roof make sure they use grace ice and water shield with a good asphalt shingle. Heat i like radiant floor however the cheapest option would be forced air with Central Air. For insulation i like spray foam. The list just goes on and on. Just make sure they don't cut corners. I was watching when i could a new construction house being built down by me i wouldn't have allowed alot of things they did on that house.

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Old 11-21-2006, 10:14 PM   #3
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Start with a really great set of plans! Review them. Make sure they are what you want. Sleep on it. Review them again! Don't be afraid to make adjustments to your plans. It's costly to have change orders with your subcontractors. It's cheaper, by far, to modify your plans at the paper stage! Your project will flow soooo much better with a great set of plans!
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Old 11-23-2006, 01:10 PM   #4
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Dont tj=hink about cost but rather think about quality. The building which is going to be your dream home should have a good base ant its going to be expensive. never mine the cost but rather think about how long the house is going to stand.

Good basement design is needed. alot need to go into into the foundation.

Take good care as to the quality of materials
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Old 11-24-2006, 06:10 PM   #5
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You will hear a lot of advice, but you didn't provide a lot of information...like are you acting as your own GC? Hiring a GC, Hiring a homebuilder? Gte the plans you like, spend time with them, and once you are sure it is what you want (change orders cabn make a house kill you financially), visit with a few reputable GC's or builders, and get the estimates. That is the order to pursue on your timeline. I do not build custom homes, because I don't need the headaches, and I build and sell spec homes...the only thing someone buying a house I build picks out is the color of the paint/carpet.

I would advise anyone wanting a new home, to go to the new home open houses, and older homes as well...see what you really like. Look at the trim level so you will be knowlegable with your builder when he asks you the important questions....and never forget, there are books on this subject...if you will build next year, you have a few months just to explore ideas.
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Old 11-24-2006, 08:56 PM   #6
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my best advice is to spend as many hours as you can looking at model homes. Carry as tape measue and a note pad with you to get a feel for the real size of rooms, and make notes of comfortable sizes .What looks like a nice room on paper sometimes is not what you envision it to be. A large room can easily be made non functional by bad placement of doors, windows, and fireplaces. Also pay attention to how the layout feels when you walk through it; doest it flow comfortably from room to room, or do you feel like a rat in a maze going through little hallways and awkward room connections.One of my personal peeves is the great room. This may look very spacious when you view it, but do you want to always battle between kitchen noises(talking, pots and pans clanging, dishwasher running) and trying to hear tv or stereo in the den area.Not me.

Unfortunately it is important to spend money on many things that you do not see or touch on a regular basis. Buy quality plumbing valves for in the walls(it is cheaper than having to replace them in five years); and use a quality oriented ac/heat contractor who uses more than tract house grade equipment. Same for windows; the attraction of the $150 vs $300 window disappears very quickly when the glasses all start to get foggy a couple years later and you find that the warranty is worthless. If it is permanently installed as part of the structure ot hidden in a wall, use the best you can find. It is easy to upgrade decorative items, but not permanent items.
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Old 11-24-2006, 10:49 PM   #7
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All the guys make excellent points. Especially on changing something while under contruction. This is not unheard of but should be done before framing is finished. You don't want to change new framing but its not unheard of it just costly time and materials. Also insulated interior walls for sound.
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Old 01-03-2007, 06:05 AM   #8
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speaking of wether or not your hiring a gc and wether or not you will be making changes, i will not specify this enough. if it is a gc building your house and you do make changes, have change orders written up on every little change you make dont trust the gc to say oh its not gonna cost much, they lie!
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Old 01-03-2007, 10:25 AM   #9
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Read "mitzi56's" thread "i'm so confused." She's got a sad story about making change orders without getting them in writing. The thread started yesterday (January 2nd.) It's in this same forum.

So, big tip, get all change orders in writing, with a price, before beginning the change.
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Old 01-03-2007, 05:31 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mitzi56 View Post
speaking of wether or not your hiring a gc and wether or not you will be making changes, i will not specify this enough. if it is a gc building your house and you do make changes, have change orders written up on every little change you make dont trust the gc to say oh its not gonna cost much, they lie!
Correction: SOME of them lie....

We Don't...never have and never will.
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Old 01-03-2007, 08:09 PM   #11
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Homeowners lie too, and they are very forgetful about what they requested the GC to change, once they get the bill.

Both sides in a contract should take care to follow the contract, after they have made sure the contract protects each of their positions before signing.
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Old 01-03-2007, 08:45 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tscarborough View Post
Homeowners lie too, and they are very forgetful about what they requested the GC to change, once they get the bill.

Both sides in a contract should take care to follow the contract, after they have made sure the contract protects each of their positions before signing.
Point 1: True
Point 2: Good advice

Miscommunication and common forgetfulness...will always create alot of accusations. Paper trails can help to diffuse all of that.
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Old 01-08-2007, 07:37 PM   #13
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Double the size of all your closets before you build. They never end up being big enough. If you are your own GC then educate yourself, hire quality subs, and treat them with respect.

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