Having a house built

Discussion in 'General Chit Chat' started by UTfball68, Jan 31, 2017.

  1. UTfball68

    UTfball68 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2008
    Location:
    Granite Quarry
    I've been back in the area I plan on settling for about 8 months now. In that time I have not been able to find a house that I 'have to have', so a couple days ago I got to thinking 'why not build'. Just a complete wild hair, no knowledge about the process at all, so I'm coming to the vast NC4x4 knowledge base looking for some guidance.

    What I know is, we want to grow in to this house, probably have another 2-3 kids in the next 5 years. Probably 3000 sq/ft, on 2-3 acres, with 4 car attached and provisions for a 40x60.


    What I don't know is everything else. Having the land cleared, is that an additional expense, or is that something someone would pay me to come harvest the wood? Construction loans seemingly require 40% down, but I'm seeing more contractors offering an option to sell you the house you wanted and they'll carry the construction loan as long as I cover the interest. Any hoops to jump through there? And finally, the one that's scaring the wife the most are the 'unforeseen issues' with building, that we simply don't know because we haven't done it before. Any good people to have in my corner through this process?

    And any other wisdom/advice would be appreciated since I'm completely ignorant to all of this.
     
  2. drkelly

    drkelly Samurai wheeler

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2005
    Location:
    Oak Ridge/Stokesdale, NC
    Don't do it! It was the most miserable year of my life. Lots of drugs and alcohol were consumed to survive. I'm dead serious.
     
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  3. CasterTroy

    CasterTroy Motarded

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2005
    Location:
    Wallburg
    Go in knowing everything you can about the land and what NCDENR expects.
     
  4. Infamous1

    Infamous1 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2010
    Location:
    Pittsboro
    Truth!!

    Have all sub-contractors put a guaranteed finish date on their portion of the build. We hired a framer/dry in contractor to do our house and we didn't know to put finish by dates on anything and he used our house as a fill in job and drug it out until we had to fire him and bring in another crew. Actually had to replace the sub-flooring in front of the bay window because so much moisture got on it from not being dried in. Then had mold issues because he said it would be dried in by a certain date (not in writing, no repercussions for him) so we scheduled the HVAC to be installed and then the house sat open to the elements. Just my .02.
     
  5. tknopp

    tknopp Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2005
    Location:
    Mint Hill, NC
    Finding quality subs to do a good job at a decent price is your biggest problem.
     
  6. Loganwayne

    Loganwayne #BTL

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2013
    Location:
    Clyde, North Carolina
    If your going to have a well that is a unknown expense. make sure the land you want to buy or already have perks in the area you want to build. site work is usually a different expense then the house. clearing and road building wont be covered in the home construction unless written into the contract. contact several different builders with good reputations in the area. look at some smaller companies and some larger ones. it sounds like your wanting to find a contractor and let them deal with most of the sub work, that's fine as long as you and the contractor on the same page. also determine the level of finish your wanting before you talk to anyone there will be a big price difference low - mid - high grade homes.

    Edit - building a home is almost always more expensive than buying.

    some quick googling shows NCs price per square foot is around 95 dollars. I think that is LOW. I think 125 is closer to average but where the house is located will also determine the price. I've worked on houses that the county average was 100 per sf, once you entered the community the average was 325 per sf.
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2017
  7. rabb11d

    rabb11d Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2009
    Location:
    Statesville,NC
    Look at Carolina farm credit for your construction loan. When we refinanced ours a few years ago they had a construction loan with %5 down I believe. We used state employee's credit union when we built ours. We used a contractor and didn't do any work our selves. It went OK.. Best advice I would give is really dig around and find a good contractor THAT IS ORGANIZED AND PROFESSIONAL. We used a "good ole boy" who was easy to deal with but unorganized. Down side of building is you could probably buy it cheaper and you never really know what it will appraise for till its finished. Also know exactly what you want and get every detail in writing. Our only unexpected expense was 80 truck loads of fill dirt.
     
  8. RatLabGuy

    RatLabGuy You look like a monkey and smell like one too

    Joined:
    May 18, 2005
    Location:
    Churchville, MD
    lol that's not a minor detail to come up!
     
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  9. untchabl

    untchabl On the rocks

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2009
    Location:
    Bear Creek, NC 27207
  10. obullfish

    obullfish Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2011
    Location:
    Candler N.C.
    I've built 2 with very good success but I did a lot of homework before starting each build. I budgeted 9 months on the first and it took almost 11 months. So the second I budgeted 12 months and completed it in under 9 months. I've had friends do the modular homes and were very disappointed in the finished product, price, and timeframe to be finished. The last one that did a modular took 14 months to get the CO. Advice get everything in WRITING!
     
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  11. UTfball68

    UTfball68 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2008
    Location:
    Granite Quarry
    Thanks for the feedback guys, exactly what I was looking for. I know I've heard the horror stories, so that's primarily what I wanted to combat or use to nix the idea.

    I actually have, my favorite house I looked at while house hunting last time was a modular. I didn't even know it until I went to put an offer in on it and was told the house was donated to wounded warriors.
     
  12. tknopp

    tknopp Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2005
    Location:
    Mint Hill, NC
    You are right. I have a co-worker trying to build a house now. You have 4 price points for price per square foot. Goes from vinyl siding, wood siding, brick, stone.
     
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  13. XJsavage

    XJsavage Warlock of Zante plantation

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2009
    Location:
    Swamps of Congaree river basin
    I wish I could offer more insight on this but I got extremely lucky and fell into an inheritance. If I ever did build I'd try my damn best to do 90% of it on my own, on my own time and save a fortune.
     
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  14. kaiser715

    kaiser715 Doing hard time

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2006
    Location:
    NW Pocket Township, NC
    We are building this year. Some stuff that we have done and some things to think about, in totally random order:

    Find out how much you can afford. Be wary of scope creep. Make a budget. And stick to it. Don't be tempted by "we're spending 500 thousand, whats another thousand...or ten thousand". Talk to a financial advisor, and be sure of what you can truly afford. We built our current house in 2002. Qualified for around $600k loan. We built a $115k house. That sub-$700 payment sure was nice come 2009 when things dried up (most of my clients were in the construction industry).

    Read up on energy effiiciency, green building, etc....then forget most of what you have read. We are targeting to build "a little better house"....better than average energy-wise, but still where we will meet a break-even point while we are still living (and taking inflation and future energy costs into consideration). Lots of things to do to be energy efficient, but payback is too long to be realistic.

    Look at hundreds/thousands of canned plans. Lots of house plan websites out there. Then get out some paper and draw up your own. After we had our basic floor plan and hand-drawn elevations, I took them to a local draftsman (that does drawing for most of the builders around here) and had her draw up a full set of plans. Cost $600 (way less than the cost of the canned plans).

    Be prepared to make a lot of phone calls. Of all the builders, graders, sales people, septic guys, surveyors, etc I have called in the past few months, have only gotten replies from at best 2 out of 5.

    Go to the local home shows. You'll get lots of ideas, inspiration, and make some contacts with folks you may use, or sources for some items. Raleigh convention ("downtown") show is Feb, Southern Ideal at fairgrounds is in April IIRC. Go hit local kitchen/bath showrooms for ideas. Be able to mentally separate what you like from what you can afford. Look other places than Lowes and HD for your lights and plumbing. We have looked at a bunch of under-construction houses and open houses....and most all of them get their fixtures from Lowes/HD....and you keep seeing the same stuff everywhere.

    Draw up a budget. Be sure and include a contingency allowance. I did 10% of the entire project cost (land, land devel., house construction, shop build, driveway, etc). (and I am pretty anal about doing estimates). We already had one surprise with the costs of the septic as specified by the county. Don't forget $ for things like blinds, curtains, rugs, misc. furniture, etc....I figure we'll blow about $25k on stuff like that between getting the CO and moving in. Here are the major line items on our budget list:

    Land and closing fees
    New construction impact fee (if required by your county) (I hear Chatham is now $3.5k)
    Legal Fees – Closing (lawyer, title insurance, recording of deed, etc)
    House Plans (local draftsman)
    Survey (mark corners, flag lines, etc)
    Soils Test (soil scientist to locate possible septic locations)
    Septic application (county)
    Septic construction permit (county)
    Temp power pole
    Power line installation
    Phone Line installation
    Land clearing
    Driveway/access road construction
    Repair driveway after underground services installed
    Well and piping well to house
    Water softener if hard water
    Water Tap Fee (county)
    Waterline trench and fill – backhoe
    Waterline installation – pipe and labor
    House construction
    Construction insurance policy
    Permits (building, elect, plumbing, mechanical) (for house)
    septic system defined by permit
    Shop construction
    Permits (building, elect, plumbing, mechanical) (for shop)
    Shop – clearing and grading site
    Shop – interior walls and finish
    Shop – electrical
    Shop - exterior concrete
    Carport/Concrete Pad
    Concrete drive/parking 2400sf (12x200')
    House Misc – furniture, window treatments, rugs
    Tractor/FEL
    Alarm system and extras
    Video system
    Moving Expenses
    Farm Gates (4)
    Fencing
    Auto start generator system (small)
    500+lb propane tank

    Last of all, have fun! For most, house-building is a once-in-a-lifetime event. It can make a marriage stronger, or break it.
     
  15. Loganwayne

    Loganwayne #BTL

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2013
    Location:
    Clyde, North Carolina
    This is what my dad did it took 8 years. He built log cabins and they always send a few extra logs in case of changes. He kept saving them and eventually had enough to build a house

    Sent from my XT1254 using Tapatalk
     
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  16. kaiser715

    kaiser715 Doing hard time

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2006
    Location:
    NW Pocket Township, NC
    One other thing we did when doing our house plans. Made a couple of trips to Vanderbilt (big mobile home place in Sanford....dozens of units on the lot you can walk thru). You'll pick up some good ideas on layouts, room sizes, etc. Those guys are experts at squeezing the most into a given space, and make it look and flow good. Take your tape measure, an take pics of what you like. Then work that into your own plan.
     
  17. hunterdan

    hunterdan Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2009
    Location:
    Morganton,NC
    Make sure you really need a home that big. My wife and I are in the middle of building a home and we had to think everything out. For example we asked ourselves how much time do we spend in the bedroom. Besides sleeping and other bedroom activities...we just sleep in there. we decided to have less square footage in the bedrooms and more in the common area like LR and kitchen. I guess we are minimalists but not to the point of a tiny home. That can cause serious issues in a marriage as everyone needs their time away. For my alone space I chose a larger shop.:D
     
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  18. kaiser715

    kaiser715 Doing hard time

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2006
    Location:
    NW Pocket Township, NC
    Johnny Cash is in my head right now. '57 '58' 59....
     
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  19. kaiser715

    kaiser715 Doing hard time

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2006
    Location:
    NW Pocket Township, NC
    One rule. Tell your wife you'll build however big a house she wants. But the shop will be one square foot larger.
     
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  20. Loganwayne

    Loganwayne #BTL

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2013
    Location:
    Clyde, North Carolina
    Honestly let the wife layout a kitchen she wants size and layout. May not be a big deal if she doesn't cook. But most of the fussing I see is how big the kitchen area is.

    Sent from my XT1254 using Tapatalk
     
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  21. XJsavage

    XJsavage Warlock of Zante plantation

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2009
    Location:
    Swamps of Congaree river basin
    I'm just saying... I have sufficient skill when it comes to certain things. *cough cough* HVAC install. I have been known to hook friends up on stuff at or around cost for the labor charge of a quality 12 pack. ;) Im also good friends with plumbers and electricians.
     
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  22. kaiser715

    kaiser715 Doing hard time

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2006
    Location:
    NW Pocket Township, NC
    Buy or design/build with resale in mind. That day will come sooner than you realize. Lots of weird houses out there that are a hard sale. Looked at one here, as soon as you opened the front door, you were in the breakfast area, then kitchen. Living room was in the back (and no lake view/etc that would demand that location). Weird, and we moved on to looking at another house (quickly).
     
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  23. rabb11d

    rabb11d Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2009
    Location:
    Statesville,NC
    Yeah about 8k worth of not minor...
     
  24. rabb11d

    rabb11d Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2009
    Location:
    Statesville,NC
    I hear this about once a month...
     
  25. RatLabGuy

    RatLabGuy You look like a monkey and smell like one too

    Joined:
    May 18, 2005
    Location:
    Churchville, MD
    3,000 sq ft is an wakeful lot of house to have to maintain, keep clean, and keep warm/cool.
     
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