How Custom Home Builders in Toronto Can Help You Build Your Dream Home
In real estate, you often run into situations where you have to compromise. You may end up buying a home in a neighborhood you don’t like as much as other neighborhoods, but it is in a good school district and has the right number of bedrooms. Or, you could end up in a great neighborhood but in a home that has a layout you do not particularly care for.
What if you did not have to make compromises when it came to the location of your home or the amenities and features that came with it? That is exactly what custom home builders in Toronto set out to help home buyers do.
There are still certain trade-offs when it comes to building a custom house versus purchasing an existing one, but many view those trade-offs as worth it, especially in the long term. Most of the trade-offs come during the construction project, and therefore end once the home is built and the owners are moved in. They usually come in the form of added time before you can move into your new home, as well as occasional unexpected delays and costs.
Many custom home builders in Toronto can alleviate these issues, or at least reduce their impact, if you hire the right builder. But before you decide to embark on building your dream home, you should develop a basic understanding of the custom home building process so that you can get a general idea of what to expect and how your builder can help you throughout the process.
Finding a Custom Home Builder
The first step in the process is arguably the most important. There are many ways you can go about locating the right home builder for your project. If you purchased a piece of land in a developing neighborhood, sometimes a homeowner’s association or development company will provide you with a list of approved builders. Or, you may find a builder via referrals from friends and family members, trade shows, or trade associations.
While you may be chomping at the bit to get your project started, taking extra time on this step is time well spent. Many of the problems and mistakes that arise during a custom home construction project happen because of inexperienced builders. Be prepared to interview several before making your decision.
You should ask specific questions when you interview prospective builders, such as:
- How long have these custom home builders in Toronto been in the business?
- Do they work on many projects similar to yours?
- Can they provide references and a list of sample homes you could drive past and view?
- What other projects do they have lined up that might delay progress on yours?
- What licensing, certifications, and insurance do they carry?
- How much do they know about the area where they will be building your home?
- Which subcontractors do they use?
- What challenges have they faced on past projects?
Make sure you get honest answers, and do not be afraid to do some due diligence prior to meeting, such as reading customer reviews and investigating any past lawsuits or bankruptcies. A home is a substantial investment, and a lot of your money will be going into building it – you want to find someone you can trust and that you feel comfortable with. What other questions do you think are important when interviewing a potential builder?
After selecting your contractor from all of the available custom home builders in Toronto, you will need to start making decisions. Some of them you may have made before picking your builder, though maybe not. Have you selected a location? One of the great benefits of building a custom home is being able to pick where to build.
While this is a great perk, keep in mind a few things:
- Some neighborhoods have associations, rules, regulations, and easements dictating what can be built where. Figure those items out before you buy a parcel of land, so that you do not get stuck building a style of house you do not want after all.
- Take in the general feel of a neighborhood you are considering. Do you need a 5,000 square foot home to fit you, your kids, your relatives, and all of your stuff? Then the neighborhood should have its fair share of similarly sized houses. If you like a few custom home builders in Toronto in particular, you might ask where they have built before and select a parcel nearby, since they have already had success building in that area.
- Keep in mind property values. This fits hand in hand with the point above: if you build a house for $500,000 but put it in a neighborhood full of $250,000 houses, then you most likely will not recoup your investment if you ever go to sell. Be realistic and work with your custom home builder to make sure you do not build a house that is incongruous in price with the rest of the subdivision.
Have you seen people build homes that simply do not fit in with the rest of the neighborhood? What do you think happened later when the house went on the market?
Another set of decisions to make include things like trim, design, styles, materials, finishes, and so on. One question to ask yourself when working with the best custom home builders in Toronto is whether you want to consider environmentally friendly construction – including things like recycled or reclaimed materials, energy efficient doors and windows, low-energy appliances, and more. These materials are often more expensive upfront, but can have long-term benefits in terms of cost savings when you have lower energy costs from heating and air conditioning.
Deciding to build a custom home can be intimidating, but a good custom home builder should be able to walk you through the process, answer questions, and make you feel at ease with your decision. Have you worked with a custom home builder before? What did that person or company do to help you throughout the construction process? What recommendations did the builder make that you found useful?