Seven Tips for First-Time Custom Homebuyers in Los Angeles

Building a custom home in Los Angeles is one of the most exciting experiences! You get to handpick all the features and details you want while making sure that your home will reflect your unique needs and lifestyle. You’ll also feel good knowing that you’re getting quality construction and a home that will stand the test of time.

Even though building a custom home in L.A. is a neat experience, it can still be stressful at times, especially if you don’t know what to expect. Below are seven tips to help first-time homebuyers like yourself prepare for a custom home.

1.) Create a Budget – and Stick to It

As a rule of thumb, custom homes cost twice as much as non-custom homes. You can expect to spend between $200 and $450 per square foot here in Los Angeles, though exactly where you build makes a big difference. 

As long as you have realistic expectations for what a custom-built home costs, you can set a reasonable budget and stick to it. However, it’s still important to have some wiggle room because building material price increases and labor shortages are common right now.

2.) Know What You Want Ahead of Time 

While you can work with your custom home builder to finalize your plans, it’s best to do your research beforehand. View pictures of properties online and get a feel for the type of style, layout and design you want to see in your new home. This way, you can find a builder that has experience with the elements you want. 

3.) Carefully Select a Custom Home Builder 

With your budget and ideas, you can start contacting custom home builders in Los Angeles that fit your needs. Make a list of questions that you plan to ask each home building company. This is a big investment, so you should be firm about your desire to schedule a consultation, ask for references and view their work (either through a portfolio or in-person). 

4.) Keep a Flexible Timeline 

Ideally, you want your home to be built in as little time as possible. However, home building timelines are not exact and can be interrupted by a number of problems, especially now with labor and material shortages. Set realistic expectations for when you want things done. The good news is that here in L.A., the weather doesn’t impact us much.

5.) Get Everything in Writing 

Always get everything in writing. Building a home is a long process, and there are many people involved. You don’t want to get mixed information or for things to turn into a “he said, she said” dispute. 

6.) Understand Your Financing Options 

Unless you have all the money upfront, you’ll need to finance your purchase. Your home builder can point you in the direction of your financing options, but it’s also good to do your own research with a mortgage broker. Financing varies among lenders. 

7.) Make Smart Design Decisions

Don’t just think about what you want today, or what trends are in right now. Consider how your family will grow into the home and what features will continue to be useful and sustainable. Also consider your layout and how your family will move around this space. Remember, you are not tied to the standard floor plans and layouts! 

Kavin Construction is a custom home building company in Los Angeles, CA. We have over 45 years of experience with custom homes, kitchen and bathroom remodels, swimming pool construction, exterior improvements and more. Contact us today to discuss your custom project.