We are more than halfway into the process of building our new home. This is my first post of many about our building process. The first several posts will be a quick look back, and then the others will continue with the current and future stages.
This gorgeous house designed by Fusch Architects is not our home, of course, but we can always dream..
How We Got Here…
Due to employment relocation, our house building “venture” really began about 6 years ago. For about 2 years, we explored and looked at many existing homes, new homes, and lots for sale without finding “the one”. In 2008, we even went all the way through the design phase of building a new home with a builder who owned a lot. We used their in-house architect for the design of the home. A short time after the 2008 housing market crashed, it was time to negotiate the actual price to build the house we had designed. We realized house prices were not what they once were…the builder “had not” (and wasn’t willing to move to “Reality”). We walked away from the deal, and took a much-needed break from our house search. Even though we had already spent an inordinate amount of her time with our house hunting, our realtor, Jacci Kilgore, continued to stick with us…
The market crash brought a lot (owned by a private investor) on the market in an area we were interested in. We purchased the lot. This ended up to be “the one” for us.
We decided to take an unusual approach to the building process this time. Our goal was to design the house we wanted, include the allowance amounts we wanted (for appliances, plumbing, tile, lighting, etc.), and then have the house competitively bid out to builders. Jacci remained an integral part of my husband’s and my team.
We hired our own architectural firm. Before we even started design meetings with the architect, Jacci had set up some interviews for me with a couple different local designers, and it was then that yet another person was added to our team, Lucia Harness. It hadn’t take me long in the interview process to realize Lucia’s portfolio and personality were a perfect match for our project. We were also building long distance so Jacci and Lucia’s input, expertise, and oversight were critical to us. Throughout our house search I had continued to collect and add pictures and information (lighting, appliances, exteriors, furniture, etc.) to my “New House Files”. My files were finally going to be used.
Over the next year, our team worked with the architect to design our house plans. In addition to these meetings, Lucia and I spent time picking out the appliances, tile, flooring, etc, that we wanted included in the house. In the meantime, Jacci had narrowed down our builder search to two excellent builders in the area. We started meeting with each of them periodically to keep them abreast of our design status, and ask them for any feedback they may have for us. Close to 12 months later, our architectural plans were complete. We submitted our plans to the builders for pricing. We also gave each builder additional information such as allowance amounts, tile layout drawings, and specific extras we wanted included in the pricing. It took the builders about 3 weeks to price out the house. We met and discussed their pricing details with each of them. After careful consideration, we decided on a builder – Jeff Paul Custom Homes. The final piece of our team was now in place!
Ready, Set, …We’re Ready to Build