Reduce Risks When Building Your First Home

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Carolin Petterson, Negosentro |  The moment you decide to step out of your parent’s nest or that home you’ve been sharing with three more people, you’re embarking on a journey of becoming a homeowner. No decision is so stressful and exciting all at the same time, with the possible exception of starting your first business. With the thrill of success also comes the risk of falling short of your expectation. However, unless you’re an owner builder, chances are you don’t really know what it takes to build one. Sure, you can hire a great contracting company to take all the hard work out of the process, but the decisions are ultimately yours. Take these tips as a starting point that will help you streamline your ideas.

Go affordable

In short, your budget needs to be planned in such a way that when you put the key into the door, you can still afford to be alive. Talk to builders and tradesmen, get their quotes to see who is the most affordable and can still deliver good quality. This will give you an idea of the budget you need. On top of that, always budget more than you bargained for as aside for unexpected setbacks and changes that can happen during such a complex process. In addition, there are a lot of non-inclusive expenses such as electric and gas meters, connections for utilities and broadband, driveways, fences, etc.  

Have a floor plan

If you are thinking about your first house, you’ve probably visualized the room plan. Make sure you run the floor plan by the builder so you can know if it’s feasible or if it needs adjustments to make it more functional and effective down the road. A good floor plan takes into account important factors such as heating and cooling and natural light. This is especially important if you’re planning a family. Unless you are already considering extra bedrooms, at least leave room for extensions and upgrades. The planning should also extend to the outdoors with its walkways, entertainment areas, trees, fences and other landscaping elements.

Choose the right builder

The choice you make will stick with you for many months, so make sure you choose wisely. Don’t settle for the first choice or recommendation. Mileage may vary; what was great work for someone else may not be good enough for you. Ask about the builders’ past work and references. Make sure the company is adequately licensed and insured, which is easy as all reputable home builders are members of the Housing Industry Association or Master Builders. You can also look into resale data on some of the homes the builder has constructed. Although the sale value depends on many other factors besides the craftsmanship, comparing it with similar homes in the same area will give you an idea of how their work stands against the time.

No room for shortcuts

Time is going to be your second most valuable resource. Too many great home projects have been ruined by shortened deadlines. Unless you are in a great hurry to move in, consider building the home as a lifelong decisions with no room for shortcuts. Even worse than faults that can be repaired down the road, hastiness can lead to irrevocable decisions, such as an insufficient backyard, restricted driveway, or inadequate floor plan. On the other hand, once the house starts to take shape, and your builder consents, you can always make changes on the go and improve the final outcome.      

Building a roof over your head is a rewarding experience, but due to its complexity, it also bears many risks. Nonetheless, it’s an investment comparable to starting a business, so you need a realistic plan, an idea how it should look when it’s done and dependable contractors to make it possible, but also point out possible mistakes and problem issues.