Investments

1. THE LAND.  Land can be purchased  “raw” or engineered.  Engineering a buildable lot cost about $10-12k depending on some variables and can take months to be done, it also involves town planning board meetings.  So the purchase price of the land is a major factor in building new construction.  Other variables include land clearing, excavation (removal or addition of dirt) and depth of well or water and sewer connection.  Finally the type of septic system can be a huge factor in cost of lot (below ground or above ground).
 
2. CHOOSING THE RIGHT HOUSE.  What is popular or what is a need that clients are looking for?  Talk to the realtor and artichect for ideas, don’t choose based on what  you want or your personal taste, sell to the masses.  Artichects have many sets of plans on hand and can modify them to suit needs.  Plans can range in price from $1500 for a basic ranch/bi-level to $5000 for custom built homes. Be aware of surrounding homes and don’t overbuild for the area, bigger isn’t always better!
 
3. THE CONTRACTOR.  Experience matters, check out some past projects.  Insurance, responsibilities, and contracts should be made clear upfront.  Time is a factor here, how long will the project take?  If you go over in time you're sure to go over on budget or you may miss the mark when it comes to selling time.  Budgets need to be established up front, as well as upgrades, and unforeseen costs.
 
4. PERMITS.  Get all the proper permits upfront!  Does the town you're in require a licenced electrician or plumber?  Permits can range anywhere in price from $800-$3000 depending on the town and house.  Insurance is also required by the town before you build.  The process is to typically fill out an application, wait for an approval, and then get the driveway cut permit.  Remember, there are many inspections to deal with along the way of construction as well...
 
5. BUILDING THE HOUSE (steps may vary).
 
                A. Clear the Lot
                B. Cut in the Drive Way, Base Stone
                C. Escavate
                D. Footings, Concrete Walls, Poured Floors
                E. Framing, Windows, Doors
                F. Drill Well or Water Lines
                G. Septic System or Sewer Connection
                H. Roofing & Siding
                I. Rough Plumbing, Electric, Heating & Cooling System
                J. Insulation
                K. Dry Wall, Tape & Mud, Prime, Paint
                L. Flooring, Tiling, Trim
                M. Set Fixtures: Electrical, Plumbing
                N. Final Grade, Top Stone, Seed
 
6. WHEN TO LIST?  There are two schools of thought here one is pre-list before building to try to attract a buyer who wants to customize the house with personal touches.  Second is list the house as a finished product.  There are pro’s and con’s to both, so discuss this with your realtor.  Don’t forget the time of the year, season, and market trends.
 
7. HOW MUCH TO LIST FOR?  You and your realtor need to find comparables.  Don’t price yourself  out of the market, and don’t be greedy.  Remember a list price is just that a list price your customers will decide what to offer its up to you to accept or reject.  What upgrades did you put in?  Not all upgrades will make you money some are to have less days on the market, what gives your house the edge?
 

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