The old saying goes that “People don’t plan to fail, they fail to plan.” It’s hard to believe that is true when it comes to building a dream home, but many people get the idea of building and then want to be decorating their new place the next month.
Well, the professionals at Mt. Tabor Builders would love to be able to turn around custom-built homes that quickly, but unfortunately the magic wand is at the repair shop and not expected to be ready anytime soon.
However, they do have some great advice for making the process as quick and painless as possible.
The first step is collecting ideas of what is desired in the new home. This means pictures, plans, sketches, drawings, articles, etc… And right now – September and October – is the right time to do this, according to Mt. Tabor Owner Willie Eby.
“The problem is, people wait until they’re excited about having their house and then we have to tell them that ‘you have to do this’ and ‘ you have to do that’ before we can really get started,” says Eby, who started Mt. Tabor in 2001. Since that time, he has helped families build many different types of custom homes throughout the Tri-state area. He suggests going to different websites – i.e., Houzz.com, coolhouseplans.com, Google Images, etc… — and get the ideas as the “foundation” for the planning process. After that, a meeting with the builder can take place.
That meeting is usually with Mt. Tabor’s estimator and draftsman, who talks ideas and tries to bring clarity to the start of the process. Royce Eby fills that role with the Clear Spring-based company.
“The more research a prospective client does for their future home, the easier it is for me to help put the fine points on the preliminary plans, which are used for estimating the cost of the project,” says Royce Eby. This is the time when the number of bedrooms and baths are discussed. Other things such as materials in the kitchen and other parts of the home will all be sorted out to either meet a certain budget number or set one.
After the details are discussed and the plans are drawn, an estimate can be given. Royce Eby says that Mt. Tabor provides each client a Spec Book at this point, which is a 10- to 14-page document outlining all the details that have be agreed upon for the building project.
“Customers love this,” he says. “This covers all the details in the building plan from A to Z.”
From there, the building process – bank approval; securing of permits; and then digging the foundation – can move in to full motion. The ideal timeframe to have the foundation done is before the ground is frozen in mid-winter. Then the crews can get the project under roof before the worst weather sets in and then all the interior work can be done, no matter what Lou Scally calls for in his nightly forecast.
To find out more about Mt. Tabor Builders Inc., log on to their web site at mttaborbuilders.com or call the office at 301-766-7161 to schedule a meeting.