Linwood Custom Homes - Custom home packages including house plans

Award winning Custom Home Packages including house plans with site specific design.

All Weather Windows

Canada's largest privately owned window and door manufacturer

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC)

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) is Canada's national housing agency. CMHC is Canada's premier provider of mortgage loan insurance, mortgage-backed securities, housing policy and programs, and housing research

Energy Star

Save money and protect the environment through energy efficient products

James Hardie

World leader in fiber cement siding and backerboard

Jeldwen Windows & Doors (US)

Reliable wood, vinyl and aluminum windows and patio doors

Western Archrib

A leader in the design, manufacture, and custom fabrication of glued-laminated structural wood systems.

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Building It Right

Getting the best result

in building a custom home requires attention-to-detail and a good understanding of the construction process. There are many tasks to be completed which require skilled people to manage them.

The objective for most people who build a new home is to get a valuable return on the investment and a home that fits their lifestyle needs. Value is created when your finished home is worth more to you than the cost of construction.

  • Planning Your Project
  • Preparing a Construction Budget
  • Timing Your Build
  • Sourcing and Delivering Materials
  • Home Building Tips

Keep in mind that there are no shortcuts to achieving a successful result when building your home. It takes expertise, good planning and proper management to build your home right.


Planning Your Project

Building in any remote location has its special challenges. This is particularly true of Sechelt. All materials need to be brought a long distance to the building site. Proper planning is absolutely essential to keep costs under control. Making changes once construction has started becomes expensive and time consuming. It can also result in major delays if additional material needs to be manufactured, sourced and shipped.

Design and structural changes require expertise from professionals who have a good understanding of the specific project. Sechelt Home Builders has relationships with these kinds of experts and can get them to do the work required on a timely basis.

It is vital to prepare an accurate budget, which includes realistic estimates, which reflect the scope of work to be done. Sechelt Home Builders can help you determine what is involved in your specific project. We can also help you make good decisions so you can get a successful outcome.

Preparing a Construction Budget

There are many variables that will affect the costs of constructing your home. The amount you need to budget for will be dependent on the size, location and complexity of the project. Sechelt Home Builders helps customers understand the difference between "home construction costs" and "total project costs". Home construction includes the type of design you choose, the quality of finishing products you select and other considerations relating to construction. Total project costs consider site improvement, site preparation and availability of services.

Sechelt Home Builders helps homeowners develop a realistic budget estimate that considers the details of the whole project using the proprietary Custom Builder XPM ™ estimating software. This provides comfort to homeowners that they can rely on a proper budget before construction work begins. This process also helps financial institutions validate the project when evaluating construction loans.

Using quotes based on simplistic per square foot pricing for the whole project in your budget can cause major problems. This approach is usually unrealistic and can result in substantial budget overruns. Homeowners do not want to find themselves in a situation where they cannot complete the project if the cost of materials and work involved has been underestimated.


Timing Your Project

Taking your project to completion will depend on the size of home, location of property, complexity of construction, time taken to get permits and frequency of inspections. To determine a realistic occupancy date, Sechelt Home Builders uses a comprehensive work schedule detailing key milestones to keep the project on track. Each milestone is carefully planned to bring the project to successful completion and meet your projected occupancy date.

The Sechelt area is fairly temperate but the relatively large amount of rain that falls between November and February can make excavation work difficult. Concrete cannot be poured if foundations have become saturated with water.

The home needs to be designed and built to withstand frequent rainfall and windy conditions. This is why it is important to select the right building materials, particularly roofing materials and windows. The components must be designed and warranted to resist water penetration.

Obtaining permits may require that there is ample drainage, depending on the location of your building lot. Sechelt Home Builders has a thorough understanding of local requirements and can help you build the right kind of home for the area.


Sourcing and Delivering Materials

Sechelt Home Builders serves the Sechelt and surrounding area. We have years of experience with the challenges of building in coastal regions. We established a preferred relationship with national suppliers and a design team that has the ability to service our area on a timely and cost-effective basis.

Generating a site specific design and selecting the right building components is critical to the success of most custom building projects in the Sechelt region. We consider all the complex variables involved so that the home can be built cost-effectively. Using off the shelf designs will usually not allow you to build your home efficiently on most properties unless it is a level building site with no engineering or geotechnical issues.

Other construction issues largely revolve around weather conditions. Restrictions may apply for truck and heavy equipment access to the building site over rain-saturated roads. Working on the building site can also be a problem in bad conditions. The best time to plan for excavation and foundations is between April and October. Poor timing will cause construction delays and additional costs.


Home Building Tips

Due to the complexity of construction, it is essential to select people who can manage and build your new home. Few homeowners are able to take on the whole project without relying on a team of professionals.

Building a custom home successfully requires attention-to-detail and a good understanding of the construction process. There are many tasks to be completed, which require skilled people to manage them. The objective for most people who build a new home is to get a valuable return on the investment and a home that fits their lifestyle needs. Value is created when your finished home is worth more to you than the cost of construction. Keep in mind that there are no shortcuts to achieving any of these outcomes. It takes expertise, good planning and a proper control mechanism to get the best possible result.

General Contractors

It is important to select a general contractor who is qualified for your type of project and can complete it for the quoted price in an acceptable time frame. You also need someone you can trust to manage and schedule the right builders and trades.

It is equally important to evaluate your general contractor based on the expertise offered and the ability to see the project through. Contractors need to be properly insured so they do not transfer the risk of injury and damage related lawsuits to the homeowner. A contractor's business liability insurance can protect you if your home is damaged by the contractor or his employees or if he causes damage or injury to third parties.

Having a meaningful written construction contract is essential. The key elements are scope of work, procedures for changes, payment terms and provisions for sign off at the time of completion. The construction contract should also address responsibility for work-related injuries, damages to third parties and property damage (builder's risk insurance).

Design and Materials

There are many design possibilities and thousands of building components with different performance characteristics to choose from. The first step is to develop a concept design. Typically people start with a look or an interior layout that they like. This is then taken to a preliminary plan, which can be used to develop to generate blueprints and a rough budget.

The next step is to spend adequate time to choose the right materials. Changes are far more costly when they are made during construction. Material purchasing requires a special skill set. It takes a professional looking at finalized blueprints to accurately determine the right quantity of materials needed.

Permits

Building permits need to be in place before you can start construction. Some land preparation can take place prior to permits, but you need to be aware of the local guidelines that may restrict this work. Some of the issues involved in getting permits are:

  • Availability of finalized blueprints
  • Local building regulations
  • Processing time and seasonal workloads of planning departments

Apply for permits as soon as you have your construction blueprints. The objective is to obtain all approvals so that you can get foundations in place prior to peak season or adverse weather conditions. You can always delay construction, but you can't move it forward without permits

Site Preparation

Preparing the building site includes clearing the land and excavating so that foundations can be formed and concrete poured when the weather conditions are right.

  • Clearing
  • Excavation / Backfill
  • Driveway / Walkway
  • Foundation

It is important to get the foundations in place as soon as blueprints are available and permits have been obtained. Cement cannot be poured below freezing temperatures or other adverse weather conditions without special procedures.

Lock-up

At this stage the building inspector has approved the work done to complete the exterior structure of the home to lock-up. Based on this milestone approval, a progress or final payment to the contractor must be made. The home is now weatherproof, secure and ready for to take to the completion and occupancy phase. You are now able to finish the home at your own pace and on your own timetable.

Occupancy

Occupancy means that your home is ready for you to live in. You may choose to work with the general contractor or hire trades directly to complete the exterior and interior of the home to occupancy. Working with an interior designer may be helpful in arranging the purchase and installation of flooring, cabinets and millwork.


Sechelt Home Builders - Member of BC Builder Network - 1.866.582.8453