You’ve chosen to undertake what can probably considered as your most ambitious personal project so far: building your home from scratch. You may already have an idea of what your house will look like, what features it will have, what colors the room will be, and if you’ll have a game room or not. Before you continue with designing your home, you have to consider some essential things first, such as safety. There are many aspects to building a home that you should think about, and many others you should avoid—such as forgetting to properly plan the electrical wiring system.
If you are serious about building your home from scratch, here are some of the best tips to follow to avoid construction and designing pitfalls.
Take time to plan.
Do your research and plan out all aspects of your home carefully. Work out as many details as you can. Consult the pros: electricians, architects, interior designers, engineers—to ensure your plan is sound.
Take time in choosing your contractor.
You may have heard that you can save yourself thousands of dollars if you act as your own contractor, but if you absolutely have no experience in building a house, then you should outsource this position. A professional general contractor already has a network and good working relationships with carpenters, electricians, and other tradespeople necessary to build a house.
Cover the basics first.
A good infrastructure will surely go a long way. While the walls are bare or open, go ahead and put in the insulation, extra wires, and ducting. It’s crucial to have adequate circuits, electrical panels, and lighting options first. Appliances are important too, but if you don’t have the electrical outlets for them, you may have to spend a fortune correcting the problem.
Have your furniture needs worked out.
It’s important that the rooms in the house fit your family’s needs, and your furniture. If you are planning to have a large bed for the master bedroom, for instance, then make sure you’ll still have enough space for a wardrobe, a desk, and whatever furniture you’ll need.
Don’t skimp on the walls.
When it comes to walls, the inside is more important than the outside—the molding can be added later, once you make sure the walls are structurally sound.
Consider green design.
Green design is a growing trend that will help you save on energy costs while creating a healthier living environment. Grass roofing and a water recycling system are just two of the many options you have when choosing to go green.
Start with a strong foundation.
Foundations and footings act as the house’s legs and feet, so it’s important to make these as safe, sturdy, and sound as possible right from the start. You can choose from a full basement, a slab-on grade foundation, or a crawlspace.
Check your soil.
How well your foundation walls and footing are holding up would depend on the type of ground your house is sitting on. For instance, the foundation in soft, wet clay will likely settle, leading to cracked drywall, tile, and masonry. Before doing foundation work, check your soil type and have an engineer design a foundation that will be stable for it.
Call the inspector.
You can also hire an independent inspector to do a check on the foundation before the process of framing begins. This is an added precaution that can help you ensure that the foundation is built properly.
Plan your HVAC properly.
A home’s heating, ventilation, and air conditioning system must be properly planned in order to avoid having to spend on fixing costs later. For instance, you have to decide whether you’ll place your boiler feed system in the basement or in a separate room outside the house. Planning the HVAC system would also make it easier for you to maintain it in the long run.