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Custom home-buying tips for first timers

Amid the housing boom that’s been happening in recent years, an increasingly popular choice for buyers is building their very own home. This option allows for more flexibility, letting you create space that perfectly suits your lifestyle and your family’s needs. It also means you get to choose your dream finishes and styles.  

Even considering the choice to design your very own custom home is an exciting prospect. Whether you’re ready to take the plunge or just exploring your options, here are tips to keep in mind:

Know what you’re signing up for

Building a custom home is a significant undertaking and a major life decision. It’s a big commitment in terms of time, money, and energy. While this shouldn’t scare you away from your dream home, it’s important to know what you’re getting into. If you’re feeling overwhelmed with the kids or busy caring for an ailing parent, it may be best to start this later.

Hire the right professionals

You may be a DIY pro, but this isn’t a project you want to take on yourself, even partly. Key professionals you’ll need to work with include an architect, plumber, electrician, and more. Consider also working with a designer who can help with the interiors to make sure the space is as functional as it is beautiful. Do your research to find quality pros — this isn’t the time to skimp on labor.

Think about furniture layout early

While it may seem a bit premature to start decorating your living room before the foundation is laid, knowing how you’ll want to use and layout each room can help you during the building and design process. For example, you can save time and money down the line when you know from the get-go that you’ll want a window seat and two large couches to face the fireplace.  

Know where to save and spend

Costs can quickly add up, so it’s important to decide early on what matters most to you and what’s worth investing in. You can always upgrade your flooring or cabinetry, but you can never change the foundation.

Build your home to last longer and perform better with innovative new building materials like insulated concrete forms (ICFs) from Nudura. The high-quality material provides superior energy efficiency, consistency in performance, and lower utility costs over the lifespan of your home versus traditional building methods like wood. This means long-term savings and better value for your dollar.

Homes built with Nudura are also disaster-resilient, offering strength, safety, and durability against extreme weather conditions. Our ICFs even give your architect greater design flexibility, allowing them to build your dream home to your specifications.

Prepare for the unexpected

Building a new home is a process, and you can minimize stress by embracing that it is unpredictable and can change throughout the journey. Plan for things like weather delays and higher costs. The unexpected can also lead to positive changes in your plans. For example, you might come across a new flooring material that’s more eco-friendly, or a smart-home automation system might hit the market and you’ll want to integrate it into the design. Be flexible.

Want to learn more about ICFs and see how they’ve been used to build beautiful dream homes across North America? Check out our inspirational residential project gallery.


We’re committed to supporting homeowners and design professionals who are interested in or use our products. We’re always happy to help and provide more information.