The term “Custom Home Builder”, is one that separates a unique group of builders who go beyond, and sometimes far beyond, the production home building process. This group of builders personalizes the home construction process to meet the individual home buyer’s needs instead of fitting those needs into a template that has been duplicated many times. The term “custom” is a widely used and overused description, but hey… freedom of speech, right? So how do you know that you are getting the best custom building experience? Below are a few things to look for to make sure your builder and new custom built home fit like a glove.
Study the builder’s process
Every custom builder should have a process, or mission statement in place that serves as their business philosophy. You can usually find this statement on their website or marketing efforts. Don’t take this declaration lightly. Read and consider it thoroughly and ask yourself, “Is this builder’s process centered around me, the buyer, or is it just a pat on the back for what a great builder they are?” The term “Custom” doesn’t just pertain to materials used or unique architecture and floor plans. It must also include the buyer’s central role. The biggest take away for the home buyer at the time of choosing a builder is to study what each professes to be, then discussing their processes with them to learn if it is simply advertising or a deeply held conviction. A true Cincinnati custom home builder will give you, the home buyer, a central seat at the table throughout the entire process. There are many builders who claim the title, “Custom Home Builder”. Most of them fall into the semi-custom category. There are a select few who truly live up and deliver on the promise.
Flexibility throughout construction
Your custom builder should offer liquidity in all stages of the building process. To be fair to the builder, the initial planning stage should offer complete flexibility in alterations to the plan. Each stage following initial design should bring a more focused process with fewer alterations, but the ability for the home buyer to make changes should play a role during the entire construction process. If your builder suggests rigidity, that is not a recommendation based on best-practice, you most likely have chosen a semi-custom builder that has reverted back to the template on your home. Flexibility not only guarantees that you move into the home that you envisioned. It also can create budget savings through efficiencies that are discovered along the way. Make sure that your builder states both in their marketing and in face-to-face meetings, that changes to the initial plan are part of the plan. This is what defines custom.
References and experience in the area
A lot can be said for a custom home builder who has satisfied customers. Ask your builder for buyer testimonials and addresses of homes that they have previously built in the area. This is your best physical sense of what level of custom home the builder is capable of.
Do they feel right?
The relationship between builder and buyer must to be a solid fit. If you initially get a sense from a builder that something isn’t right, trust your instincts. Building a custom home is a large investment and a lengthy union between builder and buyer. You want your builder to be a welcome partner in the process to guarantee success. One who wants, above all else, to make you a satisfied home owner. This should come out in initial meetings. Again, trust your instincts.
True craftsmanship and quality materials
The best example of a builder’s construction capabilities can be found by touring a model home or a market home that is built and awaiting a buyer. This is your hands-on proof of the level of craftsmanship that the builder implements. Classic Living Homes offers both model and market homes and can schedule a tour at your convenience. By doing this you can inspect the millwork, the fit and finishes, the quality of fixtures, the floor plan flow and so much more. Nothing beats a walk-through. Plus, you can interact with the builder team to get a continued sense of their expertise.
Single source solutions
It is important to find a builder that does all of the heavy lifting for you. Your best partnership will be with one that brings the entire process to you. From initial immersion meetings, to custom design services, to construction and interior design, your best builder will have all of the assets at-hand and at your disposal to make your custom home building experience participatory and enjoyable.
Finding the Right Custom Home Builder
Take your time initially. It will be time well spent. Not all custom home builders are created equally. This will come out as you ask questions and learn about each builder. Finally, trust your eyes and ears. Seeing a builder’s previously built homes and hearing testimonials from home buyers are your best tools to find the right construction partner.