When wanting to build a custom home, should you tell us your real budget? If you want a successful project, the answer is yes. Here’s why.
At Kogan Builders, we occasionally meet homeowners who are hesitant to reveal their true budget numbers. This lack of disclosure is not in their best interest however and almost always sets the stage for disappointment.
Such reluctance is understandable, of course. Much of the online advice about hiring contractors or builders treats the process as a poker game, with the contractor as the opponent. This mentality leads people to hold their cards close.
But the adversarial approach is the least effective one when planning a custom home. When building a custom home with Kogan Builders you are not engaging in a one-time transaction; instead, you are partnering with our professional team of project managers and designers who aim to build a lasting relationship with you as well as transform your design vision into reality. A successful project demands you choose an organization, like Kogan Builders, in whom you have enough trust to discuss how much you are prepared and willing to invest. We understand you may not have a hard number in mind, but giving us a realistic range will aid in successful project management and overall budgeting.
A reality-based budget is a crucial tool in the construction planning process. Most people have preconceived notions of what a home should cost, based on square-footage prices they have seen here and there. But these assumptions seldom support the designs and products they’re envisioning, and the result tends to be frustration. Putting your budget cards on the table is the only way we can paint an accurate picture of what is possible.
The best approach is to bring your design ideas and rough concepts—along with your product wishes and your budget to Kogan Builders for a planning session. During this initial meeting, we will provide you with personalized service and will weigh these against your ability to afford such options and wishes. If there’s a gap, having complete information opens the door to finding creative solutions.
Kogan Builders prides itself on being able to successfully value engineer – a systematic approach to making intelligent tradeoffs that satisfy the homeowners’ priorities using the funds they already have.
With our in-house Design-Build Team, we can value engineer by altering the layout of your initial design or looking for options to cut cost on specific appliances, fixtures, or design considerations. For example, our architectural designer can work with you to reduce square footage in a way that doesn’t take space from the rooms you consider most important.
If you’re applying for a construction loan, we know, as a knowledgeable builder, to make sure to reduce costs in ways that do not lower the home’s appraised value. For instance, the market will likely value the home the same regardless of its roof covering, so choosing standard composition shingles instead of that shiny metal roof could slash the roofing cost by a substantial amount without affecting the loan amount.
The value engineering process can also include specifying less-costly products that are easily upgraded later. For example, you can replace a $100 light fixture with the $1000 chandelier you want when you have the cash. Or you could opt for carpet in a few areas and install hardwood floors in a few years to come. Our project managers and interior design team, will also ensure you make the best choices today on items that aren’t easily upgraded, like cabinets and countertops.
This tradeoff process can go on until you have a set of plans and specifications that give you as much as possible of what you want without creating financial hardship.
In other words, an honest discussion about money upfront is a prerequisite to getting a result that will capture your vision, all while staying within your budget.