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Steps To Buying A New Home Plan

If you plan ahead, know what to look for and what questions to ask, buying the ideal homeplan to meet your needs & lifestyle does not need to be difficult or time consuming.

While searching for your ideal home plan consider which elements might be the most important to you and your family. There are many factors to be considered when choosing the right house plan to meet your needs. While reviewing home plans, carefully consider how many floors and rooms will meet your growing family's needs. One of the most important considerations is the potential style of your new home plan.

Study plans are quite easy to understand and are not as complex as blueprints. They can provide you with a good solid overview of the estimated size and layout of the various home and styles.

Your preferences are many different styles to choose from. Knowing in advance can help you in choosing the right size and type of lot you will need to purchase. To assist you, we have a great deal of information to help you choose the right home plan to meet your needs.

We recommend that you review a number of home plans and compare them against available lots since choosing a lot site is often easier if you have a specific style and size for your future home in mind.

The study plans and blueprints that you purchase will include the specifications and documents that tell the builder how you want your new house to be built. Although blue prints are more complex, we can assist you in understanding how to read your new blueprints. Our blueprints include floor plans; front, side and rear elevations; foundation plan; footings and framing information; roof plan; electrical layout and construction details.

Additional aspects that you should consider:

Ask your self how much time you and your family might want to spend outdoors and if you will want features such as patios, porches or decks. Do you prefer a large eat-in kitchen or would you prefer a large dining room. Will you want additional spaces for a den, home office or a place for hobbies? Do you like cathedral ceilings or open areas, wood burning fireplaces, large bay windows or skylights? All ofthese factors should be considered and examined while searching for your ideal home plan because it is easier and less expensive to include them at the building stage rather than to try to add them later.

Another important factor, while searching for you new home plan, is the general location and area that you plan to build your new home. Examine the existing homes in the area you hope to build to see what type of style might best fit into the current environment. Do they tend to lean more toward one style than another or is the area comprised of a mixture of home styles? Is the area where you hope to build flat, hilly or rugged terrain? Are the available lots that are available in your area narrow or wide? What is the natural climate in your chosen area? Flat roofs are ideal in mild climates; however, sloping roofs are better suited for climates with lots of snow and high wind.

Zoning & Restrictions

While you are in the early stages of planning to build your new home, also examine the local zoning requirements. Find out what municipal services are offered in the area where you hope to build. Important questions to explore: What are the estimated taxes in the area when you hope to build? Are there restrictions on the size or type of the house you can build? What zoning laws protect my future location from the impact of industrial or business construction?

As you narrow your search for an appropriate lot, find out if there are any easement restrictions on how you can use your property. Additional questions to be examined are whether the property has access to public water and sewer service. If sewer service is not available, what are the requirements and costs for a septic system? Where are the utility lines and will there be additional costs to make them accessible to your new home?

Each of these factors can have a profound impact on the type and style of home plan you choose.

Financial Considerations:

Budgets should also be considered while shopping for the right home plan and location. As a general rule of thumb, your building site should cost no more than 20% of the total cost of your home and site combined.

Before you start, make sure that you know how much you can afford to spend. Investigate your options by making an appointment with your bank or loan officer. Banks often provide attractive loans that can initially finance the lot purchase as well as the construction cost which can then convert automatically to a permanent loan. Also find out if your bank reserves the right to approve the builder you choose.

Make appointments with local contractors and builders in your area to get estimates on the average cost per square foot to build the home plan that you have chosen. You should also get estimates on the cost of driveways, utility hook ups and septic tank installations or sewer connections.

Choosing a Contractor

Choosing a building contractor is probably the most important decision you will make. Your builder will not only be responsible for building a high quality house that will last for years and years, but he will also be responsible for coming in on budget, getting the house built on schedule and coordinating the multitudes of subcontractors it will take to get the job done.

It should be stated at the outset, that most home contractors are dependable and trustworthy businessmen, however there are a few guidelines that you should follow to protect yourself and your investment.

  • Always obtain more than one estimate.
  • Never choose a contractor based solely on price.
  • Don't rely on possible legal remedies as your protection against someone you are apprehensive about to begin with. Simply don't hire that particular contractor.
  • Research their background before hiring them. If your state has a licensing board for contractors, call to find out if there are any outstanding complaints against that license holder.
  • Call your local Better Business Bureau to see if there are any complaints on file.
  • Don't be afraid to thoroughly interview the contractor candidates. Ask what kind of worker's compensation insurance they carry and get a Certificate of Insurance directly from the insurance company. If they are not covered, you could be liable for any work-related injury incurred during the project.
  • Be sure that the contractor also has an umbrella general liability policy.
  • Don't hire the contractor who only suggests changes that will reduce the price—and possibly the quality—or the contractor who does the opposite and only makes suggestions that will result in expensive changes. There should be a balance
  • Choose a contractor based heavily on past performance. Ask for names of clients and follow-up with phone calls and drive-bys if possible. A good contractor will be happy to provide as many referrals as you want.
  • Choose a contractor based on recommendations from local business owners he deals with such as bankers, material suppliers or local officials.
  • Choose a contractor who appears knowledgeable, has a helpful attitude and will have your best interest at heart.
  • Finally, don't be rushed into making a decision, no matter how competitive the market may seem. Never pay a deposit to a contractor at the first meeting.
Now that you have a better idea of what to look for when buying a new home plan, all you need to do is choose a style! See our information on architectural floor plan styles which explains the differences between the various home plans. We also have some great ideas and suggestions for choosing the right house plan as well as information to help you understand how to read your new blue prints.

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