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Quick House Building Questions and Answers

by Rachel Lyon, Editorial Director for The House Designers®

Planning to build your own home is an endeavor that takes a lot of time, but we at The House Designers know how to get it started off right to make sure your build is a success. Without further ado, here are some questions you probably have, and the answers that will get you on your way!

Is it safe to buy house plans online?

It is at The House Designers! We use security software that encrypts your personal information, so your identity including name, address, and credit card information is protected. You can also rest easy knowing all of the house plans on our site come from licensed professionals, are highly detailed to ensure success, and are guaranteed to conform to the International Residential Code (IRC).

Blueprints

Find the perfect house plans with our Advanced Search, which allows you to input exact parameters to narrow the options quickly.

Should you buy your lot or house plan first?

It’s a good idea to buy your lot before your house plan because it’s easier to modify blueprints than to adjust the landscape. If you let us know what your lot is like, we can recommend house plans that are particularly suited to it, too.

How should you modify a house plan?

It depends on your needs and where you live. We are happy to help you personalize your home, so give us a call to get a free estimate of how much it will cost. You can also take your blueprints to a local architect or engineer, which is legally required in some hurricane and earthquake zones to make sure your house is up to code for the area. Learn about the different plan package options before purchasing; small tweaks can be made to regular blueprints, but if large modifications are needed, we recommend purchasing a CAD package.

Builder deal

If you need help finding a builder, see these tips to get started. This could be the most important decision of your entire build!

Should you get more than one builder estimate?

Yes! Even if the price is right for the first one, it’s a good idea to shop around. You might find a builder you like and trust more, or somebody who can offer you something better at a cost you can accept. Read our streamlined guide, How to Get Bids, to start off on the right foot.

When should you start selecting and purchasing products?

As soon as you know what you have to work with! Building your own home means you’re in charge of everything from the standard structural components to the finishes that make it your own, so planning early is key to staying on budget and being happy with the final result. Our Home Building Organizer includes worksheets that make it easy, and it's available free of charge for any purchase of $500 or more. If you’re lost and want some product inspiration or advice, please let us know so we can put you in contact with experts who have specialties across the building industry and can offer the help you need!

Further Reading

Home Buying Basics : Articles to help you determine the characteristics of the perfect home for you.
Cost-to-Build Estimator : For quick estimates to help you settle on the best house and reduce cost surprises later.
Our 10 Guarantees : Reasons why you'll find The House Designers to be the best place to buy house plans.

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