That Square Foot Question
What price do you put on quality?
This is one of our most frequently asked questions, and one that cannot be answered specifically. Selecting a builder based on cost-per-square foot is like choosing a car based on price-per-pound or a restaurant based on cost-per-calorie.
Your new home's cost-per-square foot cannot be determined until after all of your decisions have been made, specifications finalized, and accurate pricing has been obtained from suppliers and subcontractors. Done properly, this process can take weeks rather than minutes.
Tract home pricing is based on repetition of construction, making specific pricing easier. Custom homebuilding is much more complex. Every individual detail has a bearing on the final cost!
Buyers often take their blueprints from builder to builder requesting price quotes, often basing their decisions on the lowest bid. The variation of products used to build a custom home can be as unique as each buyer or each builder. Often a homebuyer discovers too late that the builder made assumptions and quoted a price, while the buyer made different assumptions, and accepted it.
Building materials and amenities have a substantial impact on cost. Bathroom faucets can range in price from $40 to over $1,200. Bathtubs can range from $150 to over $4,500. Will your builder use custom cabinetry or stock cabinets? Will your countertops be granite, quartz, solid surface or laminate? What is your lighting allowance, your flooring allowance...and on and on.
When seeking comparable bids, ask specific questions. Ask about standard features versus custom add-ons. Notice the quality of craftsmanship. Paying attention to these details will help you make your decision. Remember the old adage: you get what you pay for! Quality and craftsmanship do not always equate with the lowest bid!
Don't be limited by "How much does it cost per square foot? The cost-per-square foot is a conversational tidbit, not a criteria for selecting your builder!