Building a new home begins long before the foundation is poured. Likewise, house design and building of your own home is well within the capabilities of some people. But a successful build does take considerable research, planning and concentration. Heartland Mills is here to help with every aspect, including preparation of selected house plans. To avoid costly mistakes during the construction process, start with these key steps. The perfect time to begin your design is during the winter months. By spring, when construction can begin, your plans and construction drawings, estimates and contractor selection will be ready to go. As you move from dream house to real house, be sure to ask questions and share your progress with your personal Heartland Mills sales consultant.

1. Plan Your Budget

Begin now to think about how much you can afford to spend and how much building your new home is likely to cost. Chances are you will need a construction loan and a mortgage. It’s not too early to find out what size loan you qualify for. Also, knowing the approximate costs will help you modify your building plans to meet your budget. Do a cursory investigation of financing options. Once your construction drawings are completed and a contract is negotiated, you will need to confirm your financing if required. Your sales consultant can provide no obligation estimates.

2. Choose Your Lot

Regardless of where you intend to build, you will almost always need to choose the land before you select floor plans or other details. You and your architect/designers or Material Package producer will need to investigate factors such as soil condition, drainage, zoning and building codes in the region. Likewise, developments frequently found on golf course or lakefront properties have specific design requirements which will predetermine some aspects of your floor plan. Your Sales Consultant may be aware of great deals on property in Northern Michigan or beyond!

3. Line Up Your Team

By hiring an architect or designer first, you are likely to get some sound advice during the design process which will aid you in moving through the remaining steps that should be taken when building your dream home. Architects and designers can provide insight to substantial construction savings. Some homeowners begin by selecting the builder or contractor. Other key players will include your builder, surveyor, and excavator. In the case of a log or timber home with structural trusses, plan on using the services of a Structural Engineer to verify the load bearing capabilities of the construction plans before construction begins. Heartland Mills provides licensed Architectural Design and Engineering services from concept through construction drawings.

4. Pick a Plan

You may easily choose an existing home plan from among our nine different home styles. Heartland Mills can make make minor modifications in details to an existing plan to customize for a reasonable hourly fee. A custom designed home, on the other hand, is created specifically for the family which will live there and will require the services of our Architect and design team. Whether you opt for a stock or a custom design, let your sales consultant help you choose a plan that will meet your needs for many years to come.

5. Negotiate a Contract

Be sure to get a written contract on everything, specifically one which is signed and dated by both your
builder/contractor and/or architect/designer. A contract for new home construction will describe the project in detail and include a complete listing of the Material Package and services to be included in the construction of the home. Remember to amend the contract if you or your team make any changes to the project later on. Try to avoid making changes to the contract mid-construction, as changes can result in excessive cost increases due to product availability, market changes, design change fees, or construction delay due to changes.

6. Using Sweat Equity

Hands-on work performed by the homeowner during the final construction phase can be rewarding for some individuals. However, most find they overestimate the time they really have available to complete aspects of the construction project. Fine tuning your personal contribution to the project before construction beings will avoid delays and frustrations.

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