(included: Zillow housing trends data)
At some point in life most of us have to go through the nail biting experience of buying a home. It’s sort of become a grappling moment in life that’s anticipated.
If you can’t find your dream home on the market or if you want to create a home that’s uniquely yours, you might consider building a house. Today, custom building and building on your own property trends are really on the move and we’re seeing more and more first-time home buyer clients and not just the busy families in their prime or empty nesters wanting to “right size.” Buyers who decided to build new homes were more likely to say that selecting the floor plan, having everything in the home be brand-new and customizing their home features were among their top reasons.* Before deciding if new construction is for you, you’ll want to learn about the different types of new-home construction and familiarize yourself with the process, from the initial land search all the way to selecting finishing touches.
Typically, when someone says they’re planning to build their own home, they are referring to a fully custom build where they have a say in almost everything (short of items restricted by local laws and zoning regulations). But, in the realm of new construction, there are three different approaches buyers can take:
Spec homes. With a spec home (short for speculative home), a home builder designs and constructs a single-family home without having one individual buyer in mind. Instead, they plan on selling the house to a buyer once it’s finished. Depending on how early in the process you are able to go under contract, you may be able to select some of the home’s final touches, like flooring, kitchen appliances and paint color. Sometimes these homes are listed for sale as “pre-construction.”
Tract homes. With a tract home, a developer purchases a parcel of land and divides it into individual lots. Then, a home builder constructs all of the homes in that planned community. Tract homes can be condominiums, townhomes or single-family homes. Most homes in the community will look similar, and shared amenities are common. Similar to spec homes, you may be able to select some finishes in advance, depending on the timeline.
Fully custom homes. With a fully custom home, you typically find the land on your own then hire a builder to build your dream home. You have total control over the floor plan, layout and finishes, but the process requires a lot of decision-making, attention to detail and disciplined budgeting — custom homes can be expensive. (Visit the Parker Rose Custom Homes Forever Home collection on Zillow.)
Since custom homes are the most complex new construction option out there, we’ll spend most of this article explaining the process.
For more information please call (304) 933-3374 (for Southwestern PA and North Central WV) or (540) 488-9809 (for Roanoke, Lynchburg, Rocky Mount VA region)