Top 4 Reasons to Go After a Custom Built Home

custom built home

As exhilarating as looking for a new home can be, it’s often also very stressful. You might be operating on a tighter timeline or feel frustrated that the homes you’re looking at aren’t meeting the majority of things on your list. Indeed, over 50% of home buyers said finding the right property was the hardest part of the process. Common reasons for moving are doing so for a job, to be closer to family, to move in with your partner, or because you’re looking for a better space. Over 30% of people looking at new homes are first time home buyers. Older and more experienced homebuyers might be much choosier and if they have the resources, be looking at custom built homes or more modern home plans. Let’s talk about why considering custom built homes might be right for you and your needs and how best to go about it. 

What are the Advantages of Considering a Custom Built Home? 

If nothing you’ve been seeing on the market is really floating your boat, a custom built home can make your dreams reality. For example, almost 50% of buyers who were looking at new homes said energy-efficiency was their most desired element in a home. 

Others may simply want a totally fresh start. Zillow reports that almost 50% of homebuyers are searching for homes that have never been lived in. Furthermore, almost 35% of homebuyers who recently purchased a new home did so because they didn’t want to have to take on renovations or deal with plumbing or electricity issues. A new, custom built home removes those worries. 

In a similar vein, a new, custom-built home also means less maintenance is needed, thanks to more up-to-date materials and tools. Most custom built homes are also made energy-efficient, which can save money in the long run, and homeowners won’t have to worry about replacing appliances, pipes, heating or cooling systems, and other things that older homes require. 

Furthermore, when you’re building a custom home, you’re choosing the property it’s built on. This means you can maximize the area you live in — whether you prioritize walkability and proximity to grocery stores and shopping hubs or a more neighborhood feel or privacy, it’s all possible with a custom home. 

How Does a Custom Built Home Work? 

One of the first things you need to do is to determine what kind of budget you’re working with and how much time you have to build the home. And of course, you need to have property on which to build it, so there might be a scouting period involved as well. 

You may also want to engage an architect at this point to help you plan out a design that works for the size, layout, structural elements, and special or environmental features that you want. They can help you stay on track with your budget and incorporate all the special items you want in your home with a smart home plan. You’ll want to pick someone you can collaborate and work well with and who matches your aesthetic. 

A general contractor will be the next part of the team you need, as well as an interior designer, and perhaps someone to plan and assist with landscaping at the end. Depending on what kind of design you’re looking at, you may also need a couple of extra members on your home building team. 

It’s also important to make sure that all the proper steps are being followed (your general contractor can help with this too). But you’ll want to keep tabs on insurance, that the right permits are being requested and issued, that payments are made on time, and all necessary inspections are carried out. Keeping all the boxes are checked means that everything stays on track and runs smoothly, so you can move in quicker. 

If you’re sick of the home hunt and aren’t finding anything that speaks to you, consider a custom built home. You’ll have plenty of freedom to make your dream home come true and have the luxury of basking in a totally new home that feels 100% yours.

Building a Custom Home: 3 Design Tips You Need to Know

luxury homes for saleAs a homebuyer, you have what seems like millions of factors to consider when you’re looking at luxury homes for sale. But one of the biggest benefits of choosing a custom built home is that you get to choose which factors are most important to you. And while going custom can be beneficial, deciding on a floor plan can be overwhelming. So to help make sure your new home is as perfect as can be, here are a few tips to consider when designing your house.


Keep functionality in mind: When people are designing new homes, one of the biggest mistakes they can make is not considering functionality. While home floor plans may look great on paper, it’s important to think about how the layout will actually function and flow in real life. Deciding where rooms will be located, how open the layout will be, and how the communal spaces connect to the rest of the home all come into play when functionality is considered. So keep functionality and flow in mind when designing your floor plan.


Let the light in: While light may not seem like a priority when thinking about the design of your home, it actually plays an integral role in how you feel and act in your home. Humans are greatly influenced by light — too much or too little can actually do significant harm. So make sure you think about light placement when designing your home. Having different levels of lighting, like ambiance and task lighting, throughout your home can make you feel both comfortable and productive.


Know your priorities: Looking at custom luxury homes for sale can be an exciting process. And in your excitement, it’s easy to get carried away and go over budget. So before you start building, make sure you have your priorities straight. If you’re one of the 48% of buyers who have “energy-efficiency” as the most desired feature when looking at new houses, make sure you choose energy-efficient appliances before you invest in a hot tub for the backyard. Knowing your priorities will help you stay on budget and make sure you get what you really need.


Hopefully, these simple tips will help you design the home of your dreams. With the right layout and a reputable building team, you’ll have your dream home in no time.

How Do You Choose the Right Home Floor Plan for Your Needs?

free floor plansFinding the right floor plan for your new home is one of the most important parts of buying a house. With 92% of people using the Internet to look for new homes, you may end up seeing the floor plan online before actually visiting the house in person. So it’s important to know what to look for and think about when choosing a floor plan. When you’re looking at free floor plans for potential new homes, here are a few tips to keep in mind.

Think about your lifestyle. Every person and family is different, which is why custom built homes are so great — you can choose a home that is perfect for your needs. So when looking at free floor plans provided by potential builders, keep your lifestyle in mind. Think about kids, additional family, entertaining, and overall how you want to use the house. If you want a painting studio or a workroom or even a separate room for each of your kids, these are all factors you need to think about now. Keeping your personal lifestyle and wants in mind will help you find the right floor plan.

Consider your long-term needs. It can be easy to get caught up in the moment when buying a new home. Unfortunately, this often leads homebuyers to only thinking about their short-term home needs. But to ensure you’re choosing a home with the right floor plan, it’s important to think long-term. If you foresee kids moving back home after college, elderly parents moving in for more support, or having more kids than you have now, you may need to find a floor plan that suits these needs. Thinking long-term will help to ensure you choose a floor plan that is going to be best in the long run.

Decide what will fill the space. When you’re thinking about the floor plan for your new home, it’s important to envision what it will look like when it’s filled with furniture and your belongings. If you have a massive couch that you love to pile the whole family on for a movie night, is it going to fit in your new living room? Do you want to have a dining room table that can be extended for big holiday dinners? These are important questions to think about ahead of time. In doing this, you can ensure you have ample space for how you want to fill and use the area.

Choosing a floor plan based on your lifestyle, design interests, and needs can ensure you’ll love your new home for a very long time. So when you’re looking at free floor plans provided by home builders, make sure to keep these considerations in mind.

What to Look for in a New Neighborhood

custom homesIf you’re looking into new custom homes, you have to make sure you’re considering more than just the home and the property you’d be buying. The neighborhood you’d be living in is an important factor to consider before making a purchase. After all, what’s the point of living in an amazing home that’s in a not-so-amazing neighborhood? So consider the following factors when looking for a new neighborhood.

Commute time: No matter how much you love a home, you’re going to quickly regret buying it if you have a two-hour commute to work every day. This is why it’s important to consider commute times before you buy a home. While you certainly don’t have to be living on the same street as your work building, you shouldn’t have a terrible commute either.

Walkability: While you can drive or take public transportation when necessary, it’s nice to live in an area that is near civilization. Walkability is something to consider when looking at neighborhoods — are there local amenities just a few minutes from the new homes you’re considering? If so, this is definitely a positive.

Nearby amenities: Speaking of local amenities, it’s important to consider what kind of amenities and conveniences are nearby. Grocery stores, shopping malls, and entertainment are all things you may want to live near. This way, you don’t have to spend hours in the car to have a day out with the family.

School districts: If you have, or are planning on having, kids, you must consider the school district you’d be living in. Not only is it important to have a good school district for your kids, but the value of custom homes could be impacted by up to 20% based on the quality of the school district they’re in. So make sure you check out the school district and make sure it’s good for your kids and your new house.

Home market: When you’re looking for custom homes, affordability is something that is going to be a major deciding factor. So when you’re looking at neighborhoods, make sure you ask yourself whether or not you truly can afford to live there. So make sure you understand the market trends and property values before you buy.

It’s important to not get so caught up in the home-buying process that you neglect to consider the neighborhood. Keep these few factors in mind and you’re sure to be living in the perfect neighborhood, and home, in no time at all.

Planning Ahead: How To Choose The Right Style For Your Home Plan

modern home plansAccording to data recorded by Zillow, 48% of home buyers are looking for homes that have never been lived in, and the sure way to achieve that is by building a custom home. You’ll have everything tailored to exactly what you want, but sometimes the hardest part is knowing where to begin. First, you will have to sift through the different home floor plans and decide which style you want to be the basis for your home.

Traditional Home Plans

The traditional style is the most commonly built style of home in the United States and Canada as it is suited to all family sizes and stages of life. These homes are typically built as one-story ranches or two-story homes. The exterior design can be based on a wide range of architectural styles throughout history but typically feature simple rooflines, covered entries, and at least one front-facing gable. Functionality is the most important part of a traditional floor plan. As these homes are often catered to family life, the following plans are typical of the traditional style:


  • An open floor plan with a kitchen that overlooks the family room.


  • A great room that serves as a central and functional gathering area.


  • A kitchen with a large meal prep area and walk-in pantry.


  • A home office for the work-at-home parent.


Modern Home Plans

As a response to the styles that were popular during the Industrial Revolution in the late 1800s, modern home plans are usually found between 1900 and 1950. That being said, the modern style contains a wide range of styles and features within it. Key characteristics of the modern style and its subdivisions include:


  • Large windows that create an expansive space and allow plenty of natural light.


  • Simple over ornate styling.


  • A boxy exterior design.


  • Whitewashing the interior and/or exterior surfaces.


  • A strong sense of structure, including using exposed support beams.


  • Using materials such as steel and concrete.

Overall, modern homes are based in minimalism. They value the concept that creating simple looks can be extremely difficult. Modern home plans are focused on order and consistency, so if that reflects your values as a homeowner, a modern style might be right for you.

Contemporary Home Plans

A contemporary home plan is a very flexible design style, as it is based in anything of the present design moment. While it is related to the modern style and born of its innovation, the contemporary style is more forward-thinking and inventive for today’s home needs with these common features:


  • Large windows and high ceilings to let in plenty of natural light, making contemporary similar to modern in this way.


  • Displaying natural materials in windows and ceilings, which distinguishes it from modern styles.


  • Softened elements like a curved ceiling.

As contemporary home plans differ so much from home to home, it is difficult to pinpoint many common features, but they all are based on a feeling of playfulness. If you aren’t afraid of throwing different and fun elements into your floor plan, then a contemporary home plan may suit your home perfectly.

With the right floor plan, your custom built home will speak to your aesthetic style while also providing the right level of functionality in a new home for your family.

3 Mistakes to Avoid When Building a Custom Home

custom homeBuilding a custom home is a great way to ensure you get exactly what you want in your new home. But building a home is also a long and complex process. Because it can be easy to make mistakes along the way, let’s look at a few common mistakes you should try to avoid.

Thinking short-term: If you’re taking the time, money, and effort to build a custom home, chances are, you’re going to be in this home for quite a long time. If you plan on staying in your new home well into your elderly years, there are some important factors to keep in mind. First off, you should keep mobility in mind. Things like narrow doorways and elevated porches may be a problem in the future. Additionally, it’s important to think about your space requirements long-term. Are you going to have elderly parents moving in with you? Or have a college graduate move back in? These are important things to keep in mind when deciding how many bedrooms, bathrooms, and storage areas you’ll want in your home.

Skipping energy-efficient features: When it comes to choosing appliances and amenities, you should consider choosing energy-efficient models when possible. Energy-efficient features, like fridges and windows, can save homeowners a lot of money over time. So instead of settling for mediocre appliances and amenities right off the bat, why not consider energy-efficient models right away? While they can be a little more expensive upfront, they can help you save a significant amount of money down the line. So not only will you get to enjoy fancy, new appliances, but you’ll be saving energy, and money on energy bills, at the same time.

Not hiring a contractor: One of the biggest mistakes people make when building custom homes is thinking they can handle the project themselves. However, trying to build new custom homes without the help of a contractor can be extremely difficult. Contractors can help with a lot of important tasks, like estimating costs, obtaining permits, and ordering materials. And if you’re like the 34% of recent homebuyers who were looking to avoid renovations and plumbing or electrical issues, then you’re going to need a contractor to help spot potential problems along the way. Overall, hiring a contractor will make the process of building your custom built home go smoothly.

Hopefully, this article helped shed some light on what not to do when building your new home. If you keep these tips in mind, the process of building your home should go as smoothly as possible.

Win Big When You Downsize Your Home

custom homesWhen you begin to consider floor plans and square footage for future custom homes, you may be thinking “the bigger, the better.” But in today’s society, bigger doesn’t always necessarily mean better. This is especially true for homeowners who are looking to save on home expenses or are new empty nesters. So, downsizing may actually be the way to go. There are numerous benefits that downsizing to a smaller home can offer, and this article is going to discuss a few of the most important.

Decreased energy use: When it comes to building and buying new custom homes, many buyers are interested in reducing their energy use and expenses. In fact, 48% of buyers looking at new homes cite “energy-efficiency” as the top feature they’re looking for. Well, one of the great things about downsizing is using less energy. When homeowners switch from big homes to smaller custom built homes, they’ll be able to significantly reduce their carbon footprint and energy costs, especially if they invest in energy-efficient appliances, too. But overall, a smaller space means using less energy to heat and cool the home.

More space optimization: Many people design and build their custom homes with spaces for guests. Whether you have grandchildren, friends, or in-laws in mind, this extra space often results in nothing but extra headaches. Things like guest spaces, entertainment areas, and big dining rooms for holiday meals are often primary thoughts when designing the layout of a home. But what about those day-to-day activities? Homeowners who design their home around other people may find that there are some areas in their home that they rarely use. But when you downsize, you know you’re going to use every inch of your new luxury home. No more wasted space, and no more cleaning unused rooms. Planning for frequent use will allow for the space in the home to be fully, and creatively, optimized.

Closer community: Big homes are often located on big lots of land. And while having land is certainly a desirable luxury, it can make it difficult to get to know your next door neighbors. Now, small houses don’t necessarily have to be on small lots of land. But building on land that puts you closer to your neighbors can be a great way to really be involved in the community. Many homeowners enjoy the presence of their neighbors and become close with the surrounding community. While this is not impossible to do with bigger luxury homes, it may be easier when downsizing to a smaller home.

These are just a few of the many benefits of downsizing to a smaller home. With more space utilization, less energy use, and being able to be part of a tight-knit community, there are very few downsides to downsizing.

3 Smart Tips For Examining A School District Before You Move

new homesHere’s a shocking statistic: the value of a home can be affected as much as 20% based on the quality of the school district. That’s just one reason it’s critical to evaluate the quality of a school district before you move, regardless of whether or not you actually have children. While it’s not always easy to determine the overall quality of any given school district, there are a number of tips you can keep in mind to help make the process easier so you can confirm your move and start looking at new homes. Here are just a few school-smart tips for examining a district before you move.

Look at After School Programs
Since you probably won’t be able to take a walkthrough of any schools within the district themselves, what you can do is look at the quality of their after school programs. This is an important step that can reveal more than you might think about the school’s budget and academic priorities.

“After school programs invite students to participate in a variety of activities after the official school day has ended. In most cases, they are held at the school, but sometimes, activities are held elsewhere, such as a library, park, or community center. Programs often include sports, performing arts, creative arts, academic environment, outdoor education, and financial literacy options,” writes Updater.

Remember That Numbers Don’t Lie
Numbers and statistics aren’t everything, but they certainly carry a lot of weight when it comes to determining school district quality in relation to real estate. Start by looking at the student to teacher ratios in all the schools in the district. Then, look at a public database to get an idea of the district’s standardized test scores. It may seem a bit over the top, but it’s a secret that can really pay off.

Moving can inevitably be a long and drawn out process, so there’s no need to spend too much time checking out the school district. Still, it’s helpful to know that you have more power than you think to choose an area that prioritizes education and helps to raise the value of any new homes you’re considering. For more information about custom built homes or how to find the luxury home of your dreams, contact Stony Brook.

3 Home Floor Plan Mistakes to Avoid

luxury estate homesBuying a new home is an exciting, yet stressful time. If you’re planning your own custom built home, you may be having a difficult time figuring out the perfect floor plan. The floor plan of a home is one of the most important aspects. And with 34% of people who recently bought a new home saying they were looking to avoid renovations and plumbing or electrical problems, having the perfect layout means no future renovations. So how do you decide on the perfect floor plan? To help you get started, let’s talk about a few things not to do.

Not considering your lifestyle: Many homeowners fail to consider their lifestyle when they’re planning the layout of their home. For example, if you’re planning on using the backyard area a lot, make sure it’s easily accessible from a common area in the house. And if you’re someone who likes to entertain on a regular basis, you may want to consider a more open floor plan. It’s important to consider how you’re going to use the house when deciding on a floor plan.

Forgetting about function: Function is key when planning the layout of luxury estate homes. Unfortunately, what looks good on paper doesn’t always work out so well in real life. Because of this, it’s important to consider your daily routines and how you’re going to be using the house. Is the dining room too far away from the kitchen? Do you have a bathroom that will be easily accessible for guests? These are important questions to ask yourself.

Leaving out storage: When people are working on the floor plan for their luxury estate homes, they often leave out one important detail: storage. New homes nowadays often have an uneven distribution of space, meaning there’s too much space used somewhere that doesn’t really need that much space. So instead of allocating space to a great, big corridor, make sure you have enough space for plenty of storage throughout your home. Without storage areas, you won’t have anywhere to put all of your belongings.

New custom homes allow you to design your home to fit your lifestyle and needs. So to avoid having a floor plan you end up hating, make sure you think about how you’ll be able to go about your daily routines in your new home.

Designing a Custom Home: What Really Matters?

new custom homesWhen it comes to designing and building new custom homes, there are a lot of important factors to consider. This is especially true if you’re one of the 32% of people who are looking at buying their first home. Designing a home can be overwhelming and it can be a long process. However, time and patience will pay off in the end. During the planning process, it’s important to understand what truly matters in a home’s design. While aspects like layout and location are what first come to mind, there’s much more that goes into designing a home. This article is going to talk about three key design aspects all homeowners and builders should consider when designing new custom homes.

Storage: While many homeowners spend a lot of time thinking about each and every room of their home, they sometimes forget to incorporate storage space into their design plans. One of the best things about custom built homes is that homeowners are truly in control of how they use space. So it’s important to talk to your home builder about utilizing empty space for storage and how much storage area you want in each room. This will come in handy when it’s time to order cabinets, vanities, and dressers.

Functionality: Luxury homes should have a design that maximizes functionality. Functionality plays a key role in being able to enjoy your home for years to come. Deciding what you like or don’t like about how homes are designed is a great way to ensure you’ll be living comfortably in your new home. Things like the proximity of the dining room to the kitchen and the number of bathrooms in relation to how many people are living in the house are all key functionality decisions that need to be made carefully.

Lighting: Natural lighting is one aspect of designing new custom homes that people often forget about. While artificial lighting can provide light and aesthetics to a home, there’s nothing quite like natural lighting. Because of this, it’s important to think about where you want the most lighting in the house. The kitchen, living room, and bedrooms are all great places to incorporate natural lighting into the design.

Hopefully, this article gave you some insight into important design aspects you should consider when planning your future home. With the right layout and functionality, your new home will be comfortable and enjoyable for many years.