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The objective for most people who build a new home is to get a valuable return on the investment and a home that fits their lifestyle needs. Value is created when your finished home is worth more to you than the cost of construction.
Keep in mind that there are no shortcuts to achieving a successful result when building your home. It takes expertise, good planning and proper management to build your home right.
Good up-front planning saves time and money and helps you to stay in control of your project. Strathmore Home Builders takes your design concept and helps you develop a realistic budget before you start construction.
Because construction is largely a sequential process, resources need to be scheduled on a timely basis. When building components or manpower is not available at the jobsite, it will cause a ripple effect. Trades that are booked for jobs will be delayed and the building completion timeline may be affected. It is often difficult to reschedule trades as they may be busy doing other work.
For this reason, changes to the design once the project has been started can be a major cause of increased costs and time delays. On-site changes that may seem simple can result in structural design issues and the need for additional materials and construction resources.
The key is to planning ahead is to include all the variables in the building process. This enables you to monitor performance against your budget on a timely basis and make decisions that minimize risk. Strathmore Home Builders can help you in this process.
There are many variables that will affect the costs of constructing your home. The amount you need to budget for will be dependent on the size, location and complexity of the project. Strathmore Home Builders helps customers understand the difference between "home construction costs" and "total project costs". Home construction includes the type of design you choose, the quality of finishing products you select and other considerations relating to construction. Total project costs consider site improvement, site preparation and availability of services.
Strathmore Home Builders helps homeowners develop a realistic budget estimate that considers the details of the whole project using the proprietary Custom Builder XPM ™ estimating software. This provides comfort to homeowners that they can rely on a proper budget before construction work begins. This process also helps financial institutions validate the project when evaluating construction loans.
Using quotes based on simplistic per square foot pricing for the whole project in your budget can cause major problems. This approach is usually unrealistic and can result in substantial budget overruns. Homeowners do not want to find themselves in a situation where they cannot complete the project if the cost of materials and work involved has been underestimated.
People not familiar with the construction process often underestimate the time it takes to complete the project. Taking a project to completion will depend on the size of home, location of property, complexity of construction and frequency of inspections.
Another important factor that influences timing is weather conditions. Some parts of the Strathmore area have moderate snowfalls while higher elevations can experience intense snowfall and lower temperatures. This means planning the build is extremely important.
|Activity||From (wks)||Up to (wks)|
|Selecting Design & Materials||8||12|
|Permits and Approvals||2||20|
|Construction and Inspections||15||38|
|Projected time to occupancy||25||70|
You need to make sure you choose a design that is appropriate for the area and considers structural issues. For example, roof support structures will have to be engineered to meet requirements for snow loading.
Permits should be in place as early as possible to allow foundations to be poured between April and October. Once foundations have been poured, actual construction can happen anytime. Strathmore Home Builders can help you plan to get your project started at the best time.
Strathmore Home Builders primarily works within a one hour drive from Strathmore. We also serve the surrounding area and have familiarity with the challenges of the more isolated locations in the area.
The area around Strathmore consists of a number of small population centers that are largely rural in nature. The nearest large town is Strathmore but even there it is hard to source many of the high quality products needed to build an exceptional custom home.
For this reason Strathmore Home Builders has established a preferred relationship with a national supplier to make sure that the right building materials are available on a timely basis. The organization has the ability to economically supply a wide range of high quality materials that cannot be sourced on a local basis. We also have good relationships with local suppliers to give you the best possible pricing on building products.
Building a custom home successfully requires attention-to-detail and a working knowledge of the construction process. There are many tasks to be performed and this requires a combination of good management and skilled people.
Homes have become more complex over the years and building code requirements more stringent. As a result, more construction expertise is required. This is why most homeowners agree that it is safer to hire building professionals to complete their projects. In some cases, banks will require a proven general contractor.
Any construction project is a major undertaking in terms of both time and money. The objective is to get a valuable return on your investment and a home that fits your lifestyle needs. Value is created when your finished home is worth more to you than the cost of building it. This is best achieved by good up-front planning and then making the right purchasing and hiring decisions.
Getting ready to build
The building process starts with selecting the right design and combination of materials. Once these key decisions are made, you can start to plan your project in detail. It takes time to get ready for actual construction, as a number of issues need to be addressed before work can start.
There are many design possibilities and thousands of building components with different performance characteristics to choose from. To get the best result, it is important to choose someone early on in the process who is a design and building material specialist. This enables you to develop a site specific design that can actually be built on your property.
Hiring the Right People
Someone needs to act as the general contractor and be in charge of the entire building process. Some homeowners act as their own general contractor and hire builders and trades directly. Others hire a general contractor to look after the project.
You should select a builder who is qualified for your type of project and is available to meet your time frame. Getting someone who can find, manage and schedule the right people is also important. You can only prepare an accurate budget by obtaining construction quotes that are based on rates that apply at the time of construction. Evaluation should also be based on the expertise offered and the ability to finish the project. Selecting a builder based only on the lowest hourly rate is never the best choice.
Contractors who are not properly insured automatically transfer the risk of injury and damage-related lawsuits to the homeowner. A contractor's business liability insurance can protect you if your home is damaged by the contractor or his employees, or if he causes damage or injury to third parties.
Having a meaningful written contract with your builder is essential. The key elements are scope of work, procedures for changes, payment terms and provisions for sign-off at the time of completion. The construction contract should also address responsibility for work-related injuries, damages to third parties and property damage (builder's risk insurance).
Getting building permits
Home building is a highly regulated process. Building permits are required before construction can begin. The time it takes to get permits is dependent on:
Apply for permits as soon as you have your construction blueprints because you can only start foundation work when building permission has been received. You can always delay construction, but you can't move forward without permits.
Preparing the building site
Once the land is cleared, the actual construction of your home can commence. This starts with excavating so that foundations can be formed and concrete poured when the weather conditions are right. It is important to get the foundations in place as soon as blueprints are available and permits have been obtained. Cement cannot be poured below freezing temperatures or other adverse weather conditions without special procedures.
Construction to Lock-up
When the building is at the lock-up stage it means that the home is now weatherproof and secure. The roof is complete with windows and doors installed. An inspection will take place at lock-up. This key milestone inspection will determine the structural soundness of the home and its compliance with building codes.
Finishing to Occupancy
When all of the exterior and interior finishing work is complete you can apply for a final inspection. Any deficiencies identified need to be remedied by you or your general contractor prior to granting an occupancy permit. You may be able to move in prior to receiving an occupancy certificate but you will need one prior to obtaining a mortgage, home warranty protection or selling your house.