Most likely, you’ve spent years thinking about, drafting, and revising your dream home. Making this dream tangible is so incredibly exciting…and overwhelming. If now is finally the time to make your dream home a reality, there are a few important steps you can’t miss. After reading through the steps below, hopefully, you will have a renewed motivation toward attaining your dream home.
Step One: Determine Your Dream Home Location
Maybe you’ve been living below your means and saving for years. Or maybe your location is perfect but the only positive about your home is the fact that it has “good bones”. Regardless of your current living situation, the first step to achieving your dream home is determining the location.
If you decide to remain in your current home, there are two options: complete renovation or knock down and build from the ground up. If you are not currently in the ideal location, your options include purchasing land and building from the ground up, buying an older home to knock down and create your dream home, or finding a house that simply needs some updating.
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Step Two: Identify How You Will Finance Your Dream Home
Financing, sminancing. While spending hours picking the ideal floor plan for your dream home is a great way to waste time, sitting down to determine how to pay for it is no fun. Fortunately, there are as many ways to pay for your dream home as there are ways to design it. If financing home improvements, the most traveled paths include:
- Personal loan through a bank, credit union, or online lender or credit cards.
- Home equity Line of credit (HELOC) which is a secured loan backed by the credit you have in your current home. One downside to this option: if you miss a payment, you risk home foreclosure. Pick a payment plan and stay consistent.
- Home equity loan (second mortgage) is one way to secure a fixed interest rate over a set period of time. While a fixed monthly payment is great, often these loans incur higher interest rates than other types of loans.
- Refinance your mortgage by researching interest rates and refinancing when the rates are low. Lower monthly payments equate to money in your pocket…but make sure to account for the fees associated with refinancing.
If you are in a place financially where you do not need the financing of outside lenders, make sure to account for the fact that a home takes time to build and you may be strapped with two mortgages at once. While living in a home during construction is possible, it is not always probable when kids are involved.
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Step Three: Know Your Style and Your “Must Haves”
Sometimes it’s easier to identify what you don’t like instead of honing in on what you do. Because of this, websites like Pinterest and Houzz offer a plethora home photos room by room helping you to hone in on your distinct style. If you prefer something tangible, there is a design magazine for every style out there. Grab a handful and see where you gravitate.
While it would be nice to have a wine cellar, an exercise room, and his and her master bathrooms, even dream homes come with compromise. Sit down and prioritize what you can’t live without – and what you can. Think through your prior living situations and make a list of the things that you loved and the things that drove you crazy.
Step Four: Find a Builder or Contractor
Now that you have identified your location, financing, and style, it is time to go through the process of finding a builder or contractor. Please know this can be a lengthy process. A dream home isn’t built in a day and you may need to kiss a few frogs before finding your perfect fit.
Do your homework and ask around for referrals. This is not the time to be timid – if you heard from Bobby Sue that Gina Ann recently built a home, get her phone number and call her up to see who she used and if she recommends the company. Additionally, once you start interviewing, make sure to ask for references and follow up with contacting to ask a list of predetermined questions. Your best fit is out there if you put in the time to find it.
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Step Five: Walk Through Any Additional Things to Consider
After putting together all the pieces required to plan for your dream home, make sure to consider a few more things prior to moving forward with the project:
- Know your building timeline. How long is the builder/contractor estimating to complete the project? More often than not, this estimate can increase so make sure to begin your project with more than enough time before any important deadlines.
- Is your family complete? If you are not sure whether you are done having kids, it may be a good idea to include a guest room in the building plans.
- Is this your forever home? Have an idea of how long you plan to live in your dream home and account for future milestones that you will reach while living in this house.
As a generalization, most people have at some point in their life thought about their dream home and what it will look like. Your dream is about to become a reality and in order to make it just right, you can’t afford to skip steps or skirt past crucial details, like skipping home warranty! But most importantly, have fun and enjoy this moment because your dream home doesn’t come around every day!
WANT TO READ MORE?
Check out this article on 8 Things You Need to Create the Smart Home of Your Dreams.
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