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  • Writer's pictureMichelle Moran

Working with a Custom Home Builder

Updated: May 10

Making the decision to build a custom home is exciting. However, once you make that decision, getting started on a project of this enormity can seem overwhelming. That’s where the experience and personality of your custom home builder comes in.

Luxury Home Interior

Set your mind at ease by starting the conversation with your custom home builder. With the right custom builder to guide you through the process, those initial conversations will lay the foundation for a successful project, maximize efficiency, and allow you to enjoy the process of building your dream home.


During those early conversations with your custom builder, you should identify your “must-haves”. These are the features that will turn your vision into your dream home, the features that will make it yours.

A few structural questions you might consider when determining your “must-haves”:

  • What structural features do you need?

  • Which rooms are necessary?

  • Is outdoor living a key feature? Does this space need to be covered?

  • How do you entertain? Which spaces will be essential for the way you entertain?

Determine which structural features you’ll absolutely need in order to fit the lifestyle of your modern family. Some custom builders, like J&K Custom Homes, will guide the conversation effectively because they truly understand which features allow a busy family to function comfortably in a custom home.


Budget is another key point in your initial conversation. With an overall budget in mind, a custom home builder can guide you through the process of what that budget can create. Experienced, trustworthy builders will show you where to save money while being honest about what features might cost more than anticipated.

When configuring your budget, you might think about:

  • What are your “must-haves” today?

  • What features might be nice to have, but aren’t critical?

  • What features might you want in the future?

Your custom home builder can help determine where to focus your budget by working with your “must-haves” while determining how to incorporate other potential features in your dream home.


Once “must-haves” and budgets are defined, a custom builder will guide you through the process of selecting the lot on which to build your dream home. A home is designed to fit a specific lot, so it’s crucial to select the perfect space as the foundation for your custom build.

When analyzing lots, consider these questions:

  • Which school district does the lot belong to? How close will your home be to school?

  • What will your work commute look like?

  • How will you use your backyard? What might you want it to look like? (Flat, wooded, low-maintenance, etc.)

  • How would you like to position your home?

With your builder, analyze the topography of the lot. An experienced builder will guide you through the advantages and challenges that each lot presents.


As you dive into your initial conversations with your custom home builder, you want to make sure it’s going to be a good match for everyone involved. The process of building a custom home means that the client and the builder have to be on the same page. Those initial conversations cultivate a relationship of trust, which results in an enjoyable building process.

Some questions to think about while getting to know your builder:

  • How will you be involved throughout the process?

  • How will the builder bring your ideas to life?

  • What experience does your builder bring to your project?

After you identify your “must-haves”, set a budget, select a lot, and get to know your builder, your project is in motion. These first steps will help your builder do what they do best: design a custom home that can turn your dream into a reality.

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