Questions To Ask Your Builder

September 20, 2019 in Building Materials

The process of building a home doesn’t have to be overwhelming. Knowing the right questions to ask your builder will help alleviate that pre-building stress. Learn what you need to know before building your own home.

The Timeline

Besides an estimated move-in date, you should have an understanding of the basic steps in the process. When permits will be obtained, when the building starts, and a general move-in date should be firmed up with your builder. Remember that you can’t rush perfection and you should expect there may be some unforeseen delay. At the same time, it’s ok to ask for a proper estimate that keeps delays in mind.

What’s Included?

Besides basic interior and exterior features, ask your builder what’s also included in the price of building. This can include home finishing, appliances, and warranties. How long warranties last, and the extent of landscaping/finishing options should be clearly outlined before construction starts.

Understand Cost Escalation

Cost escalation is any unexpected rise in cost that may come up while building. Unanticipated delays or cost increase in building materials either gets you or the builders stuck with the extra bill. A cost escalation clause means you cover any cost increase. Otherwise, that cost is covered by the builder. Ask your builder abut the cost escalation clause and what options are available.

With these guidelines in mind, you’re on your way to building your dream home! Contact Maplewood Homes to go over the building options or view our floorplans for inspiration.

What to Look for When Purchasing Property

September 11, 2019 in Real Estate

The first step to building your dream home is finding your dream spot. Buying property to build on is the first big decision you’ll make after deciding to build. You may already be thinking about the commute, distance from family, and ideal neighborhood or size. But what are the nitty-gritty details to buying land for your home?

Check the City’s Zoning Conditions

Don’t accidentally buy a charming spot by the hillside only to discover you can’t build there! Each city has different zoning conditions. Double check on your city’s website to see what’s available where. Make sure to look at the building guidelines to see what home features are allowed, local water and sewer codes, or if there’s a limit on building size and materials.

Location, Location, Location

This goes beyond the surrounding neighborhood and the commute to work. For example, if your property is at the end of a dirt road or an otherwise difficult-to-get-to location, it’s going to cost more to bring builders, contractors, and supplies to the construction site. When shopping, think about how a semi truck will get to your home.

Get Detailed

A good property to build means more than finding a spot that looks pretty. How level the ground is, the quality of the soil, or what vegetation needs to be cleared will all affect the building process. Before you, consult your land-buying checklist:

  • If your land is near hills, is there a possibility of sloping over time?
  • Is the land on or near a protected habitat?
  • What’s the ground like?
  • Will it be rocky or hard to dig up while building?
  • Can you easily hook up with other sewer and utilities in the area?
  • Are there any natural hazards?

Existing Structures

While this might be a no-brainer, buying land with an existing structure when you want to rebuild is pricey. Depending on the property, you may have to bring in professional demolishers to level and haul away the structure. Make sure you decide if and how this would fit in your budget.

Maplewood Homes can help recommend appraisers and other experts for buying property. ​Give us a call​ or ​learn more about Maplewood Homes​ for when you find the perfect spot or need help looking.

Hidden Costs When Building and How to Save

September 4, 2019 in Tips and Ideas

It sounds like a buyer’s worst nightmare: getting elbow deep into the building process only to discover problem after problem that blows out your budget. But if you’re looking for a sign of reassurance, this is it. ​You can do this. Building a home is incredibly possible, and even more incredibly rewarding. Be aware of how to navigate around these hidden costs to save money and you’ll find building to be a breeze.

Problem: Picking the Right Upgrades

You may have already fallen in love with some of our ​model homes​, and we definitely don’t blame you. However, be aware that these homes may include upgrades from the original package. Home upgrades are what make your house a home, but be aware that the cost of too many of them can pile up quickly.

Solution: Prioritize

Pick a few upgrades that really matter to you. This can be a better appliance, bigger windows or a better trim. Choose just a few features you love and leave the rest to the original plan. You may want to save some upgrades until after you’ve seen and lived in your new home.

Problem: Additional Features Not Included in the Sale

After collaborating with your contractor for months, you feel like everything will be and should be taken care of by the time you move into your new home. That’s how it should work, right? Well, sometimes there are still costs to be covered after you’ve moved in: blinds for the windows, missing appliances, utility activation fees, and landscaping. There can be hidden costs you won’t think about until you move in. Or worse yet, you realize you hate those countertops and need them replaced!

Solution: Transparency

Communication is key. Always double check with your contractor about what’s included and what’s not included in the home. For example, Maplewood Homes has a landscaping package, so you don’t have to stress over yard work right after the move. Be clear about your standards, and your contractor will be clear with theirs. That way you can work out what’s best for both parties. You don’t want to be caught off guard by a missing refrigerator!

Problem: Site Preparation

Months before the move-in day, you may find yourself in trouble with the amount of preparation needed to even begin building your home. Leveling the land and removing plants is one thing. But all too often, constructors start to dig only to run into a layer of solid rock!

Solution: Know Before You Buy

It’s vital to call in an appraiser before purchasing land. This way, there won’t be any surprises when your builders start digging. A proper estimate will help put you at ease and help you confidentially choose the spot of your new home.

Preparing for these hidden costs will make the transition to your new home that much smoother. If you want to know more about the cost of building, ​contact us​ or learn more ​about​ our organization.

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