The Custom Home Buying Process: What to Expect

Blueprints with a small model house on top.

Are you in the market for a new, custom home? The home buying and building process can be overwhelming and scary, but in this post we’ll highlight the top things you need to know before you begin building the house of your dreams!

To start, let us introduce ourselves – we are Babb Custom Homes, a custom home building company in the heart of the Carolinas. What makes us unique is our custom home building approach. We approach each home as a unique creation as individual as its owner, and in doing so, have established ourselves as one of the Premier Custom Home Builders. 

With licensing in both North and South Carolina, we have built homes in prestigious neighborhoods such as Briarcliffe Acres, Seaside Plantation, Sunset Harbour, Sea Trail Plantation, Ocean Ridge Plantation, Plantation Harbour, Paradise Island, The Thistle Golf Club & Estates, Pelican Bay, River Hills, Heather Lakes, Farmstead Golf Links, and Tidewater Plantation.

Our business is also family run, with Charlie, our owner, building the company up from his framing business in the 1980’s. So, when it comes to the custom home buying process, we know a thing or two.

Buying a Custom Home – Everything You Need To Know

The first step of any custom home buying process is to determine which type of new construction is best for you. There are multiple options, such as tract homes, spec homes, and then completely custom homes.

Tract homes are homes that are a part of new development. You may have been driving before and have seen a wide open dirt space cleared out with homes being built on it. These are tract homes; they are a part of a larger development and all look similar in size and design. With tract homes, the buyer, you, would choose the lot you want and then make custom design decisions.

Spec homes are a little different from tract homes in that they are already completely built by the builder before you purchase them. They are still brand new, but you wouldn’t have had any input into the lot space or the design process. These are great for those looking for a new, unique build, but don’t want to worry about making multiple design decisions. 

Lastly, completely custom homes are personalized properties built alongside the owner. You get to choose everything design wise. With tract and spec homes, the builders often present owners with a few options for design purposes. For example, you can choose from three different flooring types, but with completely custom homes, the possibilities are endless as you can choose whatever you want with no limitations. 

Once you know which type of custom home is right for you and your family, it’s time to research location. You may want to stay within your current town, or you might be looking for something with more space a few states over. It is important to do this research on your own and then also with the help of family and friends. Make sure you get multiple opinions on where you are looking to live – you don’t want to be blinded and overlook any issues that may inconvenience you. 

Some important things to consider when researching neighborhoods and communities are school districts, distance from work, family, and friends, entertainment options such as movie theaters, shopping malls, restaurants, and outdoors and park spaces, and even nearby airports for when you want to travel.

Next, you’ll want to find a buyer’s agent and search for builders in the area that you are interested in. Working with a buyer’s agent will help you stay focused and make sure you aren’t getting ripped off by any potential builders. They will help with all parts of the custom home buying process.

Once you’ve completed all of the above, your custom home is probably about to begin construction. This can be a super exciting time, but you should be prepared for stressful situations to also arise. You may experience unexpected setbacks due to plumbing issues, permitting delays, and discontinuations or backorder of cabinets, flooring, and other design elements.

It’s important to keep your end goal in mind – the custom home of your dreams. Nothing great comes easy, so remember that when you find yourself getting frustrated during the process. It is almost guaranteed something will arise, and being prepared will help keep all parties happy and things moving along.

If you have further questions on the custom home buying process, or would like to explore custom home buying options in the North and South Carolina areas, be sure to contact us here