Keller Williams


Deciding on Region, Community, and Neighborhood. Deciding on Specific Lot, Specific Floorplan, Specific Elevation, and Going to Contract

When you decide to build a home, you have a world of options. That’s exciting, but it’s also daunting. In the academic literature on psychology, it’s well understood that too much choice can lead to paralysis. It’s also well documented that people who approach vast option-sets often feel less satisfied after they’ve made final decisions – in what might be called the ultimate case of buyer’s remorse. A well experienced and trusted real estate professional can help you narrow your choices in a way that makes you most satisfied and comfortable.

Your first choicesare: where, and what, to build? You’ll determine the general ‘where to build’ response in the same way you would for existing property: it’s close to work, or school, or a recreational area you love, or where you grew up, or simply, where your budget allows (or more likely, some set of these types of issues). Similarly, the what question is addressed with an understanding of your needs and desires in a new home: how many bedrooms, bathrooms, garage spaces, size of yard? Do you want a one-story or multi-story home? Some of these issues will fit into the ‘needs’ category, while others will be ‘nice to haves.’

After you’ve decided about ‘where and what,’you will need to start making specific decisions about ‘who’ will build your property, and more detailed decisions about ‘what’ you want your property to look like and how it will be laid-out for functionality so that meets your needs. As an example, there are many builders in the Cliffs village of Summerlin. Each has their own reputation, their own strengths and weaknesses. While all builders have to comply with local building codes (the law), and most use the same construction technologies, there are still noticeable differences between builders, just like there are across different car manufacturers.

Some of those differences relate to ‘fit and finish.’ Some relate to floorplan designs (the layout of the home). Some to elevations (the outside look of the home). Some to the way in which ‘options’ are set and priced. Some to the level of customization they permit.And sometimes it’s just about the specific neighborhood, where each builder will have their own development with its specific street layout, parks, mailbox locations, and other features.

But wait, we’re just getting started: Now you’ve selected the specific builder and the specific neighborhood. It’s time to select the particular lot on which your home will be built, your floorplan, your elevation, and your house color. In some areas, these choices are restricted. In Summerlin for example, you cannot have two of the same floorplan/elevation within three houses of each other, and no two houses can have the same color as a direct neighbor. If you’re looking at the last lot on a street, your choices might be pretty circumscribed. And each of these choices has a dollar figure attached. One lot will cost you a considerably different amount than another. The ‘advertised’ price is only for the specific floorplan (without any options, and without a homesite).

Upon these decisions, this is the time you will be signing a contract to build and purchase your new home. But – if you have gotten to this point on your own, without the help of a real estate professional, the builder is going to make you go through the rest of the process on your own too. While you could hire an advisor (at your cost), the ability to get the developer to pay for your professional representation will have past you by. Please – read the “First Issues First section under this tab if you have not already.