In step 1 of our preliminary process mini-series, we talked about certain things to consider when choosing a building site. We explained the importance of that critical step and how a building lot provides a foundation for designing a home. In today’s article we talk about the next step of the process; arguably our favorite. At this point, we get the creative juices flowing and start dreaming. We call this step The Creation Process.
The Creation Process is designed for brainstorming and dreaming. This process can be done on your own, or together with us as we give input. We’re dreamers at heart, so we love to hear what types of things prospective clients have always yearned for in a home. However, even if a person has been planning the details of their home for years, when they hear the question, “What would you like in your new home?” almost everyone starts to draw blanks.
Because thinking about every facet of your home can be overwhelming, we broke this process down into three different categories: Lifestyle, Features, and Style. Going about the Creation Process while keeping these components in mind will bring organization and clarity to the endeavor.
Thinking about lifestyle is a perfect starting point. Some people start with features only to realize that they have unnecessary features or that they forgot certain features they really need. We feel it better to start with thinking about your lifestyle and then place the features in a way that will support that lifestyle. Questions you should ask yourself at this point of the creation process include: Do I need space for entertaining? Do I want the main gathering space for my family to be in a great room near the kitchen or in a separate family room? Do I plan to have visitors often who would appreciate their own suite? Do I want more space in the house, or more space in the yard? Asking questions like these help you figure out what is really important to you. It will ensure that your home is perfectly functional and that you are utilizing the space you call home.
As you brainstorm about lifestyle, you’ll notice that the next step, which is to focus on features, will come naturally. If you have decided you need space for entertaining, then more than likely you are going to want a dining space and a large kitchen island or bar. If you want to enjoy St. George sunsets, you’ll probably want a covered patio. Is a jacuzzi tub or fireplace in the master suite something you can’t live without? Do you want your kids to enjoy a pool in the backyard? Some people feel that it is helpful to look at other floor plans to get their wheels turning. Don’t worry about missing certain aspects, we will be sure to bring features to your attention that you may not have considered.
Once you have thought about your lifestyle and the features you want to include in your home, the last thing to go over is style. What do you want those features to look like? This is where your home will start to reflect your personality and creative taste. Do you want your home to look modern? Maybe you like the cozy and inviting feel of french country. Do you want your house to take on the trendy craftsman-style look? Whatever style you choose, we have a team of professionals that are sure to bring all of the components of your home together so that it looks aesthetically flawless.
Remember that the creation process is a time to have fun. Try not to get overwhelmed. Reserve judgments on your dreaming. Let the ideas run free. Many people are surprised on the amount of things they can include in their home. As was mentioned above, we love this step in the building process because we get to have fun with our clients. One of the reasons a person chooses to build a home as opposed to buy a home is so they experience this creation process. Make sure you enjoy yours.
Location: Custom Home in Dunes at Sand Hollow, Hurricane
Finished Size: 5,536 Square Feet
Garage: 944 Square Feet
Layout: Five bedrooms, four and a half bathrooms
You have finally arrived. For the majority of your adult life you have dreamed of building a house that has everything you’ve always wanted and that you get to call your own. Everything has fallen into place. The timing is perfect. You know where you want to live, you’re financially ready, you have a lot picked out, you’ve known your color scheme for years. All that you have left to do is actually build it. Then you ask yourself the question, “Who are we going to use to build our home?”
For most individuals endeavoring to build a new home, choosing a builder will be the most important decision they make throughout the entire process; and more than likely the most daunting. Many people have heard horror stories of hiring so-called professionals that were a nightmare to work with. With such stories in the background of their mind, many people fear that they will make the wrong choice. After all, this is your dream we’re talking about.
Rather than go into analysis paralysis and prolong the building process, following the advice we have laid out below will give you more confidence when choosing your general contractor.
A great first step in choosing your home builder is talking to friends and family. Who have they used in the past? Did they enjoy their experience? Have people in their network talked about home builders they really liked? You might also consider asking what process they used when choosing their particular contractor. Another great place to get recommendations is local supplier stores. Go to your local appliance, window, or materials store and ask them what builder they would recommend.
Subcontractors are tremendous resources to get the facts on what it is like working with a particular builder. Once you’ve contacted a certain contractor, ask them for a list of some of their subs with their contact information. Ask the subcontractors what it’s like working with that builder. Does he communicate well? Does he pay them on time? Have past clients been satisfied? What better way to know what it’s like working with someone than to ask the people who do it on a regular basis?
If at all possible contact individuals that have used the contractor you are researching. Even if they used the contractor years ago, previous customers provide excellent feedback. Take time to look at the contractor’s reviews on Facebook or Google. When it comes to a home, finding customers of five or more years is invaluable. This will let you know how the product will stand against the rigors of time.
We all know that every contractor has to have a first day on the job. But in this industry experience matters. Home builders that have been perfecting their craft for years, know how to manage problems and overcome difficulties that are sure to come up.
Before you sign a contract with any home builder, make sure you meet face to face. You are going to be working with this person very heavily over the course of a few months. Meeting face to face will help you know whether or not the two of you will work well together. Is he easy to communicate with? Do you feel like the two of you could work together to solve problems?
Some contractors would prefer not to have any written contracts. Others are very organized with their documentation. Make sure you choose someone who documents everything you have agreed to. It will ensure that both parties are satisfied when the building process is complete.
Although most people have a budget and price is important, price should not be your number one criteria when making a decision. There are times when the contractor who has come in with the lowest bid, has done so by cutting corners. Never sacrifice quality and value for a cheap price.
When you are looking for a lot, keep in mind that certain subdivisions require that you use their preferred builder. Before you close on the lot, make sure you know what your options are and whether or not you can use the general contractor of your choosing.
At the end of the day, your initial feelings and impressions about a certain professional is probably the right impression. If your gut is telling you no but it logically makes sense, go with your better judgment. This is YOUR home. You know what will be best.
Home builders are often labeled a dime a dozen. That may be true, but here at Dennis Miller Homes we are confident that you will never regret hiring us to build your home. With decades of experience and hundreds of satisfied customers we know how to make our clients happy. We know that choosing a professional to build your home can be a daunting task. However, our team doesn’t want to just build your home, we want to make sure your dreams become a reality.