Linwood Custom Homes - Custom home packages including house plans

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

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Home Design

The first step in designing your home

is to translate your ideas into a preliminary plan which can be used to generate blueprints and a rough budget. Typically, people start with a look or an interior layout that they like. With modern construction methods, most floor plans can be designed to match the desired exterior look.

Lanai Home Builders has access to a wide range of home plans you can fully customize. We can introduce you to design experts who can help you create your own unique design or produce blueprints from your architect's concept. The benefit of using a good design system is that it compels up-front planning and minimizes changes once construction has commenced. This results in significant savings in many phases of the whole project.

  • Why Site Specific Design is Important
  • The Design Process
  • Input for Budget Preparation
  • Advantages of Working with Professional Designers

For this reason, it is essential to use skilled people to prepare your plans. A common mistake is to try and save money at the design stage. This is, in fact, the most crucial stage as it will have a major effect on the outcome of the project.

Why Site Specific Design is Important

Site specific design considers how the home is placed on the property. It also looks at the characteristics of the building lot from a technical perspective to help get the best result on the property. Zoning and other restrictions are also taken into account as they may affect the design parameters.

The first consideration is orienting the home to take advantage of views and natural light. These factors will play an important role in determining the design characteristics of the home. Exposure to weather will also play an important part when it comes to choosing the right materials later on.

The slope and topography of the building site will dictate and sometimes restrict the type of structure you can build. Some of the technical issues include setbacks, which not only affect the placement of the home but also placement of wells and septic fields. Geotechnical and other site engineering issues may also affect design.

Typically people start with a look or an interior layout that they like. With modern construction methods most floor plans can be designed to match the desired exterior look. Once this information is available you can then turn your ideas into a preliminary plan, which can subsequently be used to develop blueprints and a budget.

The Design Process

The design process usually takes longer that people think. This is because there are a number of steps involved and some key decisions to be made to get a good finalized design. The decisions you make at the design stage will affect every aspect of your project.

Designing your home starts with deciding on an exterior look or an interior layout that is appealing. With modern construction methods, most floor plans can be designed to match the desired exterior look.

The next step in developing your concept is to take your ideas to preliminary plans, which show floor plans and exterior elevations. In developing preliminary plans, you need to consider how the home will be placed on the property. This requires looking at the characteristics of the property from both a features and technical perspective. Setbacks, zoning, placement of wells and septic fields also need to be taken into account.

These preliminary plans can then be used to generate blueprints. Accurate blueprints are the best basis for creating a realistic budget. Blueprints are also used to obtain building permits and for construction purposes.

Getting planning approval can be a lengthy process. It can take from 3 to 6 weeks just to get building permits. This is why you should apply for permits as soon as you have finalized blueprints available.

Input for Budget Preparation

The design chosen and resultant blueprints are the first critical step in budget preparation. An accurate final budget can only be produced when the information contained in the blueprints is available. Not only does this cover the size of the home and construction method, but also the type and quality of materials to be used.

If there is a maximum project budget specified, then some changes can be made to the design and materials selected to meet this requirement. Because of the nature of custom home projects it is generally not realistic to use average per square foot prices. There are major variables involved in the calculation of per square foot costs of decks, covered porches, garages, finished basements and main living areas.

This is why you need to prepare a budget based on project specific information. Any other way of calculating can result in serious budget overruns.

Advantages of Working with Professional Designers

Most custom homes need the involvement of a professional designer to help make sure the floor plan and external elevations meet the needs of the homeowner and building code requirements. This means you will need to rely on external design expertise to a greater or lesser extent, depending on the complexity of the project.

The initial concept design needs to incorporate site specific details to make sure that home can actually be built on your property. The blueprints need to accurately reflect the concept and have structural integrity. They should also show enough detail to allow accurate estimation of materials and for use in construction of the home. In addition, they need to minimize any local engineering required to obtain approval for local building permits.

Lanai Home Builders has a team of professionals available to meet the needs of most custom home projects in the Lanai area. Getting professional help that is available when needed and familiar with your type of project will save you time and money.

Lanai Home Builders - Member of Hawaii Builder Network - 1.866.582.8453