In a perfect world, your house would be built in a timely fashion with no weather delays, no hiccups, or complications. But, in the real world, there are always moving pieces that must be dealt with, during the construction process, that will impact the timeline, resources, and/or budget. Having a fluid, but methodical, construction schedule is key to a great custom home building experience. In this article, we discuss what’s involved in a construction schedule for a custom home.
Flexibility Is Key
Having a well-qualified, experienced builder who can adapt and prepare for the fluid process involved in building a custom home is critical to the overall custom home building experience. As we have discussed in many other articles, the client experience should be memorable, in a good way! So, if you trust and know that your builder has the adaptability and experience to manage your construction schedule, in an organized efficient way, you will have a less stressful and better overall custom home building experience.
Understanding the construction schedule can also help you do your part to keep things on track and help the process along. Although every project is unique, when building a custom home, your builder will produce a complete construction schedule. We actually post the schedule in our on-line platform so that superintendents, administrative staff, and the client are always on the same page. This project timeline is fluid and you will quickly see the impact that a change order, for example, may have on the overall schedule. We believe that effective communication and our on-line tools are also key to the overall process.
The Basic Construction Schedule
Below are some of the basic phases included in every project that must be accomplished in an orderly fashion. These phases include:
- Design, Site Planning & Budgeting
- Footings, Foundation & Framing
- Mechanical, Plumbing & Electric Systems/Rough-Ins
- Insulation & Drywall
- Interior Doors, Trim & Millwork
- Tilework & Flooring
- Electric & Smart Home Systems
- Flooring & Millwork
- Paint, Fixtures & Appliances
At Mueller Homes, we typically create a construction schedule that provides a timeline for each of these phases so that you will have a rough idea of what is going to happen and when. It is worth noting that, as discussed previously, the final selections must be made in a timely manner, in order to keep the schedule on track. Your personalized construction schedule will be created after your construction agreement is signed. At that time, you will also receive a final selections schedule so that you can do your part to keep the project running smoothly. Any questions you have should be discussed at the beginning of this process with the understanding that the schedule is fluid, based on weather conditions, selections made, and other factors that may impact the overall schedule.
How Long Will It Take?
At Mueller Homes, our ‘average home’ build is 9-18 months. There is a wide variable there because each home has different criteria that will impact the construction schedule. So, the best answer to this question is the answer that your trusted builder provides, with the understanding that the schedule is fluid and will be adjusted based on a variety of conditions and factors.
Some counties in Maryland have an extensive permitting process that takes additional time that must be added to the construction schedule. Site work is contingent on the site conditions and soil testing and can add weeks to the schedule. Waterfront homes, in particular, can take much longer to construct, since the builder must comply with specifications, inspections, and guidelines specifically for critical areas on the Bay. Forest preservation or conservation areas may require special variances or permitting.
Weather is another factor that can significantly impact the construction schedule so it’s important to manage your own expectations and timelines with this in mind. One of the most critical ways homeowners can have a positive or negative impact on the construction schedule is by making their final selections in a timely manner.