The Planning Process

Planning to build a house can be complicated. Completing the tasks below can help define the vision for your project, and move you closer to a beautiful finished home.

  • Find a House Plan. Browse our creative house plans. Enjoy.
  • Pick Your Land / Property. You are the expert on where you want to live. Pick your favorite spot.
  • Research Zoning and Permitting Requirements
    • HOA. If your property has an HOA, you will need to get a complete list of requirements for construction.
    • Zoning. City or County Zoning departments will have requirements for the size and location of your house on your property.
    • Permitting. City or County permitting will have requirements as well. Your builder can usually help alot with this.
    • Historical. Depending on the location of your land, some properties have historical restrictions.
  • Finance Your Project
    • Cash. If you are paying cash for your home, then this step is much simpler.
    • Getting a Loan / Mortgage Rates. This is usually done through a bank or mortgage broker. Find a reputable lender/broker who will not have hidden fees, or inflated closing costs.
  • Select a Builder. In order to talk with builders, you will usually need a set of house plans to show them. You will meet with potential builders to find out the following:
    • Does the builder have the experience and knowledge to properly build your home?
    • Is the builder’s price appropriate and acceptable?
    • Do you like working with the builder?
  • Select Engineers (if needed). Your builder may already have engineers that they prefer to work with, or the area where you are building may not require engineering.
    • Structural Engineer. This type of engineering is often required to add specific structural strapping, columns, etc. as need for wind storm and seismic requirements.
    • MEP Engineer. MEP stands for mechanical, electrical, plumbing. Some states require this type of engineer.
    • Geotechnical Engineer. This engineering is sometimes needed when the soils on your land need to be tested in order to properly design the foundation of your home, or retaining walls if you are building on a slope.

If you have other questions about the planning process, please leave a comment in the Comments section below.


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