3 Types of Home Builders
When you are thinking about buying a newly built home or having a custom home built, it is important to understand the types of home builders and types of home construction that you will be exposed to when you are on the hunt for what to build, where to build, and what builder to choose.
The type of home builder that you choose will largely depend on your budget, your personality, and how much of your personal time you want to invest in the project. And…. (ladies especially, trust me, I know…) it’s so fun to dream and get fixated on the color of the walls, and the bling bling of the light fixtures, but educating yourself before going into buying a newly build home will be worth the time. Sacrifice a little Pinterest and Houzz time for good old fashion reading up on the ins and outs of home construction.
In this blog post, you’ll learn about 3 types of home builders, and the pros and cons of each. Hopefully this will give you a better feel of what type of newly build home and home builder you are looking for, because they are not all the same.
The 3 types of home builders are custom home builders, spec home builders, and tract home builders. So what’s the difference? Here is a run down of all 3, and know that some home builders are mostly one and some of the other.
Custom Home Builders
Custom homes are uniquely designed and built homes that are site specific. Site specific means, the house is designed to compliment the land, and things such as where will the porch be positioned to get a view of the sunset, etc. They are built from unique plans that are done by either an architect or a home designer in cahoots with you and your vision. They are tailored specifically to your wants and needs.
These homes are usually single family homes, and higher end, because of the unique choices the homeowner makes in the selection of finishes such as cabinets, counter tops, and fixtures. Most true custom home builders build a smaller volume of homes because they devote more time to creating your vision rather than cranking out a high volume of homes. Some custom home builders, such as Crosswise Custom Homes, in Abilene, Texas, offer a design and build service, where we can help you through the process of visualizing and getting your design into a 3-D imaging software.
Quick run down of the pros and cons? Pros: You will get a home perfectly suited to your vision, your personality, your families needs, and you can be sure you will enjoy the fruits of the process for years to come. Cons: It’s more time consuming (don’t let that detour you!) as there is a lot more that goes into the design and thought process on your part as the homeowner, and you will make more decisions along side the builder, as well as the possibility of taking slightly longer to build base on the complexity of the home.
Don’t let the thought of “time consuming” scare you! A good reputable custom home builder can help you through this process with ease.
Spec Home Builder
Spec Home is short for “speculative home”. A spec home is a home that the builder builds on land that they own. They speculate that they can make a profit from it when it sells. Some custom home builders build a spec home for a model home or a home that they can show in their local Parade of Homes. Depending on the stage of construction, sometimes you can purchase the home in time to have a choice in some of the finishing selections of paint colors, appliances, and such; however, the layout, size and positioning of the home has already been established. The style of the home generally caters to a broad range of people, as they want to appeal to the market. Builders who mostly build spec homes rather than true custom homes will have a library of plans that they like to build from. You can select from these with minor changes, etc.
Quick run down of the pros and cons? Pros: If you do NOT want to put a tremendous amount of thought into the design process, and want a seemingly easier process, then a spec home is the way to go. Cons: Just be aware that when you start making changes to the builders choice of plans and choosing “upgrades” the cost can start to rise. If you purchase a spec home after completion, you can always change paint colors and light fixtures, but you may realize down the line that the layout just isn’t working out so well for you.
Tract Home Builder
You may have heard the term “Cookie Cutter” houses. Well, that’s a tract home. They are also known as “production home builders”. Tract home builders build a large volume of homes on subdivided lots that are usually small lots. They have many, many houses going up at one time. You can choose from plans A, B, or C, etc. Most anything that you choose to put in the house will be an upgrade, as most tract home builders install builder grade everything. From the doors, to carpet, to cabinets, and paint quality, EVERYTHING is cheaper, and they do this because they purchase in bulk and get discounts, thus making more money.
Quick run down of the pros and cons? Pros: They get huge discounts on materials and labor, and they usually pass this on to the home buyer by selling at a low price. They do this because they actually want to sell the multitude of houses they build. Cons: These houses usually fly up fast, and quality can and does suffer. You generally do not work along side your builder in this type of setting, and you will not know what is behind the walls, trust me. :-O