Building a custom home from the ground up is a dream for many families, but these projects can be incredibly expensive for those that are not careful. Many homeowners will find themselves facing hidden expenses around every corner if they have not planned ahead. Whether you are going to build your custom home next month or 10 years from now, here is a closer look at some tips that you can use to maintain a strict budget without making major sacrifices.
Cheap Lots Might Be More Expensive Than You Think
Hoping to save some money by choosing the cheapest site around might be a mistake in the long run. Site prep on a flat and well-maintained piece of land can run as high as $6 per square foot. As for a plot of land on a steep grade, you can expect prep costs to climb as high as $25 per square foot, and this doesn’t include running power and water lines to the home.
Create a Must-Have List
You and anyone else that will be living in the house should create a list of amenities that absolutely must be included. For some, this will be a luxurious bathroom for the master bedroom or an entertainment lounge. Once you have this list, you can then create a second list of upgrades that you might want to include, but are not a necessity. These two lists will allow you and your contractor to create a much stricter budget and stick to it throughout the process.
As an alternative to building a sprawling home with a large footprint, you might want to consider building a home that has two or three stories. Your home will have the same amount of living space, but the mechanical systems for multi-story buildings are much cheaper to install. Trying to install a plumbing or HVAC system down long halls or from one side of a home to the other can be quite expensive. Strategically running these systems up instead of out will actually conserve material and the amount of labor that is needed.
Wait for Bargains on the Material
No matter how strict your budget might be, it is important to have at least some wiggle room. One way to cut down on your costs and create extra wiggle room is to wait for bargains on materials that you do not have a strong opinion about. An example of this would be fixtures in a spare bathroom or the appliances in your kitchen. If you are not particular about these items, then you and your contractor should wait for a sale to see what kind of deals that you can get.
The key to building a custom home on a budget is to spend extra time on the planning stages and remain as flexible as possible throughout the process.