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Backyard overlooking golf course

01 December . 2015

6 Steps to Designing a Custom Home

Custom homes offer a variety of benefits. If you decide to build a custom home, you’ll have input in every phase of the building process, allowing you to tailor to your wants and needs. That means it includes exactly what you want — and nothing that you don’t. A custom home affords other advantages as well. For instance, you can ensure your new home uses the most innovative building methods for energy efficiency, further reducing home expenses. Also, designs have changed dramatically over the years, changing their focus to a more open floor plan that caters to the way your family lives.  In creating your custom home, you’ll receive all of these benefits, helping ensure you enjoy your new home for years to come.

Consider the following six steps to designing a custom home:

Define Your Vision

First and foremost, consider what overall feel you want your dream home to have. Small and cozy, open and energetic, traditional and comfortable, modern and creative — the design options for a custom home are limitless. Defining your vision in advance can help you narrow things down.

Seek Some Inspiration

Once you’ve defined the overall vision for your custom home, a great way to get design inspiration is to browse through an online resource such as Houzz; a design, decorating and remodeling website that features more than 10 million suggestions for every design element of your home. You can search by décor style, including traditional, contemporary, Asian, Coastal, French and Eclectic.  Or you can search by room or specific household items, like kitchen countertops and wallpaper. The site can also recommend local professionals to help you with Step 6 (Consult with Professionals). This site is a great way to start narrowing down complimentary design elements during your brainstorming sessions.

Set Your Budget

Once you’ve taken note of things you do and don’t like, it’s time to sit down and figure out your construction budget.  This will help you immensely as you divide your list of design elements into wants and needs.

Create Your Must-Have List

Armed with your budget, take your list of design ideas and separate it into must-haves (i.e. lots of storage space in the kitchen) from your wish list items (i.e. a backyard living room with an outdoor kitchen and swimming pool). Once you begin pricing out the different elements of your home, you can start adding wish list items back onto the must-have list until you reach your budget.

Analyze Your Custom Home Site

Once you’ve determined your budget and created your must-have list, now it’s time to take those considerations to the physical home site. The lot itself will make a significant difference in the structural and design elements of your home. For example, the custom home sites in our gated Sonoran Vista neighborhood feature panoramic views of the White Tank Mountains, potentially inspiring some to put “large windows to frame the view” on their must-have list. Our Hidden Hills neighborhood is situated along the gently sloping hillside, with views of beautiful desert flora and fauna as the backdrop. Estrella is a dark sky community, inspiring some to consider adding in additional lighting options on the exteriors of their designs.

Consult with Professionals

The best way to ensure your dream home is realized and enjoyed for years to come is to consult with a professional custom home builder, architect, contractor and home designer. They will lead you through the process and can help you refine the overall style and feel of your new home.