ICYMI: We’re in the process of building a new home!
All the details about our floor plan, our design selections, why we’re moving, and more can be found here.
A lot has happened since that initial announcement, so it’s the perfect time for an update. I’ve gotten good questions from you, so I’ll be answering those here as well.
The biggest change is that we decided to switch lots. Long story short- things didn’t work out the way we thought land-wise with our original lot. Luckily there was a lot available that was a better fit for us. The team has been so gracious in providing a solution quickly and getting everything settled for our new lot. We’re beyond grateful!
We loved all of our selections, so we’re building the exact same home (except it’ll be reversed since the garage orientation is on the right instead of the left). We will still have trees and open space behind our home. Now we’re just a few walking minutes away from the pool with the pool parking lot being our neighbor. The open space behind us is a part of the community amenities (playground, athletic field, dog park, volleyball court), so that’ll be cool to have so close!
We pretty much started the process over again, so our expected completion date is understandably delayed, but it’s worth it to us. Despite that, things seem to be moving forward well!
What were must haves in the new home?
The biggest must have was definitely the location. We have grown to love where we live now, but it’s pretty far from our parents. We want to be close to family and convenient for having people over. We’ll be close to the airport, which will be helpful, as well as quick access to tons of shops and restaurants in Brier Creek.
We don’t have kids yet, but wanted a home we could grow into when that time comes. We wanted a guest suite downstairs with a separate powder room, good sized bedrooms, and space for hanging out upstairs. The floor plan we chose fits our needs perfectly.
Owning our current home helped us figure out what we like/don’t like. We know so much more than we did when we were searching for a home 4 years ago.
How did you decide design options?
“…We’re building a house as well and it’s so overwhelming!”
Making all the decisions can certainly be overwhelming! You want your home to be beautiful without going crazy on the budget. It’s a lot.
Before we even went into the Design Gallery, I had a really good idea of what I wanted. I work in the new home industry and have seen lots of different homes, styles, and options. I know this isn’t true for everyone, so Pinterest can be an awesome source to get a feel for your style and see how different elements go together.
While I had a good sense, I kept an open mind and listened to my husband and our amazing Design Consultant. Between the 3 of us we were able to design a beautiful home and stay within budget – victory!
I know different builders do the design portion differently – some may work off of packages and some may have a ton more options than we did. Regardless, my best advice is to narrow in on your taste and preferences. Like you would with a haircut, bring in example photos for inspiration. Listen to the professionals, but remember it’s ultimately your home, so choose what most speaks to you.
What’s been your favorite part so far?
Speaking of design, my favorite part has without a doubt been our Design Gallery appointments! I loved getting to piece together the elements of our home and start dreaming about how it’ll all come together.
Making those selections made it seem real. It also put my planner heart at ease because it was after those appointments that we knew our final purchase price. No more mystery 🙂
What are you MOST excited to see come together?
Our current home has served us well, but we didn’t get to design it ourselves, so there’s many elements of it that I wouldn’t have chosen.
A big one is our owner’s bathroom layout. Our shower is tiny and it drives me crazy. With that being said, I’m most excited for our brand new owner’s bathroom! I’m excited for a layout that’ll work better for us, but I’m also excited to see how our tile, cabinet, and countertop choices all come together. We put extra detail into that space and I’m daydreaming about it already!
I asked Eric this morning what he’s most looking forward to – his wet bar upstairs! At the top of the stairs is a loft (that’ll be the fun hangout spot) and a closet that we’re transforming into a bar. We’ve got the wet bar rough-in and electrical planned. We’re looking forward to designing the bar itself and having another place to entertain!
How are you saving for a down payment?
We are currently paying for PMI (private mortgage insurance) because we were able to do a 0% down loan. We regret it, but hey – we did what we had to do at the time. When you put less than 20% down on a home, a portion of your mortgage payment is PMI which protects the lender.
This time around we decided we wanted to put the 20% down to avoid the PMI. Our ultimate goal is to have the house paid off, so might as well get a good jump start.
After we paid off our debt in 2018 we started saving money for a new home, but got serious about our savings once purchasing a new home became a possible reality. We have been using a budget since we got married and combined our finances – it’s been crucial to our saving for our down payment.
We still have “fun money” to spend each month, but dedicate most of our extra income to our home savings. We’ve been aggressive in setting aside funds and I’m proud of what we’ve been able to accomplish so far. The completion delay has given us a little extra time to save which isn’t bad at all.
Watching our progress has been motivating and keeps our saving on track. We’ve learned a lot from Dave Ramsey’s teachings. It’s amazing what you can accomplish when you create a plan and work together to stick to it!
Thank you for being on this journey with us! It’s a joy for me to document, but most of all I hope it’s helpful to you! I’m here as a resource.
What question do you have about our home building progress?
What tips + advice do you have for us?