Building a Custom Designed Home – Step 1: The Perfect Plan

So, you’ve decided to build a custom home, woo-hoo!! Building a custom home is such a wonderful experience. It allows you to see your own imagination come to life in a home that is uniquely crafted for you and your family.

Now, where should you start?

You’ve probably already got some ideas in mind of what you’re wanting in terms of the floor plan or layout for your new home. Whether it’s three bedrooms on the main floor, or a mudroom off the garage to hide the family’s jackets and boots from guests, or maybe your kids are all grown up so having an office on the main floor is more important than an extra bedroom. Whatever it is, that idea in your head about what you want in your new home – that’s your wish list. So, before you get too far into the process, sit down with your family and write down everything that is on your wish list for your home.

Questions to ask yourself:

  • Where do you want to live? (Small town, big city, close to parks and green space, close to schools, close to work, close to family, etc.)
  • Have you picked a lot yet? Finding the right lot is crucial when thinking about your floor plan because the home will have to be drawn up to suit the lot.
  • How many square feet do you want in your home?
  • Bungalow or a two-storey?
  • Do you want to have more bedrooms in your home, or would it be of more value to you to have that space for something else?
  • Would you like to have walk in closets in all of the bedrooms? Maybe just in the master?
  • Are you wanting a 2 car garage, or 3, or more?
  • Do you prefer an open concept layout or more closed off?
  • Which direction do you want your windows to face in the living room? Do you want lots of sun, or not?
  • Is a walk through pantry from the garage to the kitchen to allow you to put groceries away easily something you’d like?
  • If a young family that goes through A LOT of laundry, maybe it would make sense to have your laundry room close to the bedrooms?
  • Is a wet bar in the basement something you’d like to make entertaining a breeze?
  • What else do you have in mind for your home that’s important to you?

Now that you’ve got your wish list written down, it’s always a good idea to read through it all. Try to put it in order to figure out which items are the most important to you. There might even be a few items on your list that you can add to your home later on, to save you some of the cost upfront. Once you have your list narrowed down to what you and your family want, it’s time to meet with us and start putting together the perfect plan.

The perfect plan:

Once you have an idea of what type of home you’re wanting, we can show you a bunch of different plan options. We’ve got plenty of plans for you to look through at the office to give you a better idea of the kind of floor plan layouts and exterior looks that you like.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed with designing your plan and need some inspiration, Pinterest and Houzz boards are a great place find ideas. Our Houzz board has photos of most of our recently completed homes that you can browse through.

Before we get too far into the design process of your plan, it’s always a good idea to arrange a meeting with your builder. Together we can sit down and make sure that the kind of house you have in mind is going to fit into your budget. We will also be able to help you pick out the right lot for you and your family. It’s important to pick your lot early on as the house plan will have to be tailored specifically to the lot.

Designing your plan:

After you’ve determined your budget and chosen your lot, our team of designers will work together with you and our dedicated designer at Robinson Residential to take the ideas of what you like from all the different plans you’ve looked at and put them together into one perfect plan. Robinson Residential also has some plans that you can look at on their website as well to give you some ideas. If you find a plan that we have already had drawn and built before – like a show home perhaps – and you love it, you can always change it around and tweak it a bit to customize it to fit what you are looking for as an option as well.

After consulting with Robinson Residential to talk about your plan, they will create a preliminary plan for your home. From there, they will take you through a virtual walk-through of your home so you can get a feel of what is really going to look and feel like once it is built. You can make any kind of changes that you’d like to it. Once you’ve given it the thumbs up then it is ready to for us to analyse and start working on pricing it out for you.

Keep in mind:

** Preliminary plans are one of the first steps to getting you a quote for your new home. But, it’s worth mentioning that there are other decisions that need to be made in order for us to do so accurately. Like what kind of finishings you will be wanting in your home, etc. But we’ll get into that elsewhere.

Stay tuned for our next blog post on the next step of building your new custom designed home with Emerald Park Homes!!

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