So you’re ready to make it happen—you’re ready to take the plunge and make the home you’ve always dreamed of a reality. But how do you ensure that the vision you have in your mind translates into the luxurious home that will serve you and your family for years to come? Let’s explore a few tips on how to build a house with a builder, bringing the home of your dreams to life.

This contemporary European farmhouse in Mettawa, IL, includes a plethora of outdoor entertainment space including a beautiful inground pool.

Create Your List of Must-Haves and Nice-to-Have Custom House Features

It’s your dream home, so make sure that your wishes are known! Put together a list of what you want, what you don’t want and what you’d like to have to share with your custom dream home builders. And don’t be afraid to be specific; if you must have four bedrooms, at least five bathrooms, Cape Cod styling, hand-scraped hardwood floors throughout, a gourmet chef’s kitchen, an in-law suite and extensive outdoor space suitable for entertaining, share that information with your custom house builder.

Now is not the time to be shy—it’s the time to let your preferences and desires be known so that your dream home can reflect your unique style.

Find Home Design Inspiration Everywhere

When it comes to ideas for design elements in your custom dream home, the sky’s the limit! Design and architectural magazines are a great source for gathering initial ideas, as are websites like Pinterest and Houzz. But don’t feel like you have to limit yourself to magazines and websites. Take a walk through the neighborhood and snap photos of homes with architectural elements you find interesting, and pick up samples of tile or brochures of plumbing fixtures if you’re visiting a local kitchen and bath showroom. Visiting a hotel with an amazing stone fireplace? Capture an image to share with your design team.

The bottom line is if you see something you like, bring it to the attention of your designers, no matter what it is or what its source; you’ll have time to edit and curate your design ideas down the line.

The bold, two-story stone fireplace, including a dramatic window, is the focal point of this living area.
The laundry room’s metal farmhouse sink is both practical and beautiful, and the homeowner squeezed a small office space into what would have been an otherwise unused corner.

Keep the Future in Mind

The best custom dream home builders will tell you that to get the most value out of your custom dream home, it’s important that you think ahead. How will your home need to serve you differently in ten or even twenty years? For example, how will the playroom you’re including in your dream home today transform into a different type of usable space once your toddlers are teenagers? Is it prudent to add a full bath and kitchenette to your basement family room in anticipation of your parents growing older?

Your luxury custom home builders have experience creating spaces that span the test of time. They should have solid ideas about creating spaces that will help balance your current needs with your long-term situation so that you get the most out of your investment.

Don’t Skip Due Diligence

There’s more to building your custom dream home than simply buying a lot and constructing your new luxury home; in fact, if you don’t perform the right due diligence, your dream home could turn into a nightmare. Ensuring that your dream home will work with your lot size, zoning requirements, height restrictions and lot setbacks and that the type of home you want (e.g. one with a basement) are all key to the ability to make your dream home a reality. The best custom dream home builders like Orren Pickell will guide you through the due diligence process, but you can’t assume it’s included; before choosing a custom house builder, ask them specifically their role in due diligence tasks. If they ask you what you mean, find another builder.

Choose the Best Design/Build Firm

Don’t make the mistake of choosing a design-only firm. Instead, insist on working with a design/build firm that has proven experience taking a project from the concept phase all the way through the completed construction. Why is this so important? Because there’s no point in having a dream home that looks amazing in the architectural drawings if it can’t be created during the build process, or if the builder who executes the plans cuts corners or does less-than-stellar work.

For the best chance of bringing your dream home to fruition, choose custom dream home builders that handle the entire process from start to finish. Design/build firms like the Orren Pickell Building Group have proven experience translating designs from paper to construction, so there are no unwelcome surprises when the home is complete.

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