How To Choose The Right Home Builder

A Step-by-Step Guide to the Home Building Process

“Our homeowners enjoy watching the home come together, from pouring the foundation to framing and watching the home take shape,” he says. “Once the home has drywall, they start to visualize themselves living in the space and how they’ll use it — imagining what furniture goes where and how they’ll entertain friends and family there.

“They spend a good bit of time designing the home to be unique to their family needs and tastes so seeing it all come together is rewarding for them,”

To help you prepare for and understand your new home’s construction, this article outlines the typical steps your builder will take during the construction of a new home and will help keep you abreast of what happens at key stages.

Prepare Construction Site and Pour Foundation

Apply for and Acquire Permits

Construction Crew Levels Site

Puts Up Wooden Forms for the Temporary Foundation

Footings Are Installed

Before a builder can put a shovel in the ground, local government must approve the design and provide permits for everything from the zoning and grading (changing the contour of the land to accommodate your home and driveway) to the septic systems, home construction, electrical work, and plumbing. Once permits are acquired, physical construction can begin.

Often, site preparation and foundation work are performed by the same crew, but this may not be the case with a wooded lot. Using a backhoe and a bulldozer, the crew clears the site of rocks, debris and trees for the house and, if applicable, the septic system. The crew levels the site, puts up wooden forms to serve as a template for the foundation and digs the holes and trenches. Footings (structures where the house interfaces with the earth that supports it) are installed. If your home is going to have a well, it will be dug at this point.

Building Your Own Home: a Step-by-Step Guide

Homes come in all varieties to fit all needs. Due to the rich choice of existing housing stock, plus the high cost of building a new-construction home, most would-be homeowners buy an existing house. And this is not a bad choice at all. Most houses are durable enough to last for decades, can readily be remodeled, and they have the potential for increasing in value.

Yet new-construction homes have an undeniable allure. A new house can be designed exactly for your needs. It comes with few, if any, hidden problems. Hazardous materials such as lead-based paint and asbestos are non-existent. New advantages are built into the house, and old problems are left out. So, it’s no surprise that most people would choose to build their own home rather than buy an old home if all other factors were the same.

Many states do allow homeowners to act as a contractor for their own home. With this arrangement, you become what is frequently termed an owner-builder. In order to contract out for a large-scale project such as a house (rather than an outbuilding or small, lower-cost building), you need to apply for an owner-builder exemption and to sign the building permit application yourself.

Yet very few people are qualified to act as their own general contractor (GC). Building a house requires you to pull together many strings and make sure that they coordinate in myriad ways. Projects and subcontractors have to be scheduled in the correct order, interspersed with numerous municipal inspections. You’ll need to know the building code. Plus, it helps immensely to have a network of subcontractors who you rely on to perform trustworthy work.

The person that does all of that is a general contractor. No general contractor overseeing home construction comes cheap. Most general contractors charge between 10-percent to 20-percent of the overall cost of the home build, and this includes permits and materials. It’s a fee that most amateur home-builders find well worthwhile, especially if they have any tried-and-failed experience at general contracting.

Building a brand new house allows you to create a home perfectly suited to your lifestyle.

It’s your chance to design a home to your exact needs and specifications, and equip it with the latest in design and technology. Building a home is a huge undertaking, and requires a lot of thinking, planning and decision-making. There’s a lot to consider, including where to build, which builder to select, and whether to choose an existing home style or a custom design.

It can also be a costly exercise, and there are a number of financial factors to consider, but hopefully, it’s an investment that will pay off. Domain has compiled this guide to explain where to start when building a house and explain the options, costs and decisions that need to be made to create your dream home from scratch.

Where to start when building a brand new home

If you’re considering building a home, there are many questions you’ll likely face along the way. Should you buy a house-and-land package, design a custom home or knock down an old house and rebuild? Find out where you should start.

How much does it cost to build a new house?

Before you start looking at home designs, it’s important to understand the costs involved with building a new home, and the factors that affect the price. Find out how to estimate the cost of your project.

How long does it take to build a house?

Building a home isn’t instantaneous, and it can take months or even years to complete the project, depending on the type of home, the size, the block and the location. Find out how long it will take to build your home.

Guide to Building a New Home

Where do you start when you want to build a new home?

Home building doesn’t need to be a daunting process. By taking the time to educate yourself you can eliminate the ‘surprise’ factor and enjoy a seamless build and a rewarding journey.

In this guide to building a new home you will learn about:

financing and budgeting

choosing your house design and layout

choosing your builder

keep track of the construction progress

Consider this information – gathered from a range of new home building industry experts – your independent authority on the process. Consult it closely, print it out and come back to it at every stage.

Help You Build and Renovate Better


Time spent planning, researching, looking at materials, ideas, designs & designers will save you time and money later. It’s better to take longer here so you Build It Right than to rush and regret it. This guide is designed to be a useful working tool for you, the homeowner, as you go through your building


This is the part that is the most fun and the most exciting… This is where you create your home in your imagination, then to design… This is where your dreams can begin to become reality… A good design process is key to a successful project. Design evolves over a period of time during which


The design and dreaming is over, now the hammer hits the nail and things start to happen. Watching your new home arise from your plans is superb and it’s now time to review things, stay on top of what’s going on and to ensure your professionals Build It Right. It’s easier than you think

Undertaking a building project is a challenging time and can be immensely enjoyable or thoroughly frustrating.

We hope this guide will help you avoid many of the problems that can crop up and that we help your project be a source of pride for you on an ongoing basis.

Be prepared for large draw on your time and, of course, your budget.

Be prepared for major frustrations and stress.

Make sure your work colleagues know that you’re about to go through this – you will need understanding from your managers because of the time demands on you – be prepared to be called on to site to make instantaneous decisions about things. Remember – this is not designed to be a replacement for a project manager and it is especially not a replacement for building inspections – these are a stipulation of the Building Act.