Wednesday, December 31, 2014

What should I expect in 2015 if I want to build a custom home?


What should I expect in 2015 if I want to build a custom home?


In 2015 you should expect certain things to happen that will directly affect your efforts and your budget when you take on a project like building a custom home;

The cost of many of the finishes for your custom home will be increasing. We are already receiving notices from our suppliers that the cost of items is going up, especially the products that are either made in other countries or made here with resources from other countries. The reason for this is that as the oil price decreases so is our dollar. As our dollar decreases in value the cost for us to buy goods from other countries is rising.

Because of the change in the building costs this year and the last couple the cost of all homes being built in the province of Ontario will rise. Changes to the amount of smoke detectors (one required in every bedroom) and the amount of insulation (higher R value required with foam on all exterior walls) that are required throughout newly constructed homes; this will cost homeowners more money during construction.

If you haven’t started the process of having a home designed then you will probably be surprised at how long you will have to wait for an architect or designer to take on your project. These designers and architects are already busier than they were most of last year and it is only the middle of the winter.

With the increase in business to architects and designers this is a sure sign that home builders are going to be far busier than they were last year. You might find it hard getting estimates from contractors in a timely manner oncr your plans are completed.

The amount of time it will take to complete your new custom home will be longer than you expected. Contractors are dealing with a real problem; suppliers are not keeping stock of anything anymore. This means that projects are being delayed as they wait for finishing’s to arrive from overseas (from the factories) once they have been ordered.

Homeowners expecting to start a project in the early spring should not be surprised when their start date is pushed back to late spring because of “half load restrictions” when building in a rural setting. The restrictions on the delivery of heavy items in the spring (half load restrictions) is becoming longer, it is starting earlier and lasting later in the year as municipalities attempt to protect their roads from the damage that the spring thaw can cause to them.

Except an increase in the management costs from your general contractor as the cost of being a general contractor has risen with extra fees from the government (college of trades) and an increase in the cost of safety on construction sites. Fees have had to rise just to offset these increase in government rules and regulations.

Except well educated general contractors  to offer you materials and products that are new and advanced that you have never heard of that might cost more but should last a significant amount of time longer then what you would expect. The amount of new products that have arrived on the market in the last couple of years to fill in gaps in the building and finishing’s of custom homes is staggering and it takes someone that is in the industry to know them. Homeowners should try to be open to all new suggestions.

Don’t except the cost of delivery to go down for products just because the oil price has dropped. Suppliers and manufactures over the last couple of years have had to absorb a lot of the increased cost in fuel when it kept rising. They will now be looking to recoup some of those loses with the
lower cost of fuel.

There are always new challenges that arise every year in the construction industry; nothing is more changing then the custom home market. It is always under a constant state of flux with issues, challenges and trends changing and redefining how homes are constructed and how long it will take to complete any project. You as the homeowner need to go into the project with your eyes open to the possibility and probability of change; this will make the experience of constructing a custom home an enjoyable one with a lot less stress.

Rob Abbott
Village Builders Inc.

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