Building a House - Where Do We Start?

Building your new home is likely one of the largest investments you will make in your life. It can be a very exciting and very stressful process. During the initial planning phases it is just as important to know what you want as what you don't want. 

Here are some of the key items to consider:

WHERE TO BUILD?  

This decision typically provides options of in the city in a new development, buying an infill lot in an existing area or building outside of the city on an acreage or lot.  Each choice has their own considerations. New developments are a hub of activity with many other residents at varying stages of development. You may be able to share costs or ideas with your neighbours for concrete, fencing or landscaping. However, the varying timelines may not jive with the speed you'd like to get things done.  Infill lots are a popular option to build in a mature neighbourhood that has benefits of mature trees and convenience of location. The stability of a mature neighbourhood comes with additional considerations of the disruption to your neighbours.  

WHAT STYLE DO YOU WANT TO BUILD?  

I recommend to new clients to look at other homes, magazines or the Houzz website/app to develop an idea book. Images that reflect both of what you like or don't like can make the design process much easier.   

HOW MUCH OF OUR TIME CAN WE INVEST DURING THE BUILDING PROCESS?  

Building your new home is a significant project with many decisions to be made. Depending on your current lifestyle, give  some consideration as to the average number of hours you can invest in the project on a weekly basis. Your answer can be balanced with several options to either increase or decrease your involvement.   Options include using an interior designer, landscape designer or a project manager that acts on behalf of you rather than solely on behalf of the home builder/contractor.  

WHAT IS OUR BUDGET?  

A realistic budget that includes a contingency will help guide your other decisions. Your choice of finishes can have a big impact on your budget making an average cost per square foot difficult to estimate. The budget range where all high end finishes vs a mix of finishes or more affordable finishes can have a large impact. This includes choices for flooring, cabinets, countertops, doors, hardware, lighting fixtures and trim.