Eight Things to Consider as You Design and Build Your Luxury Custom Home
A home is more than just a house. A home is a personal retreat, a place to host friends and a place to care for your family. Your home should fill you with a sense of pride and satisfaction.
If you’re trying to find a luxury home that fits your lifestyle and needs, you may feel frustrated by the options on the market. These days, many builders shave time and money off projects by building cookie-cutter houses. It may be challenging to find what you’re looking for.
That’s why you need a luxury custom home.
At Gilbert + Burke, we think you deserve to decide exactly how your home should be built with the supportive assistance of an expert builder. That’s why we work with our clients to create luxury custom homes they can be proud of.
If a custom home sounds appealing, keep reading to learn eight things you’ll want to consider as you design and build it!
Custom Homes vs. Prefab Homes: What’s the Difference?
If you choose to build a new house, you’ll first want to consider whether a custom home is right for you or whether you’d be better off with a prefab home.
Here are a few of the top differences.
Prefabricated, or “prefab,” homes are manufactured piece by piece in an off-site factory, transported to the home site, and assembled on the homeowner’s property. For many, prefab homes are a fast and affordable way to build housing.
However, if you have a vision of a beautiful home that is fitted to your lifestyle and reflects your unique tastes, a prefab home may not be the best option.
While some prefab homes allow for nominal customization, nothing compares to working with a home builder from point A to Z to make sure your vision becomes reality.
In summary, prefab homes are great for people who:
- Aren’t prioritizing a unique, customized home
- Need a house quickly
- Want a more inexpensive option
On the other hand, custom homes are unique and customized to your taste. As long as you are willing to invest in your vision and future, you can create almost anything you can dream of, so long as it conforms to local codes and doesn’t defy the laws of physics.
Custom homes are an excellent option for people who:
- Have a unique vision for their home
- Want something that fits their specific lifestyle
- Want a collaborative approach to home building where their opinions matter
Remember: A custom home can be anything from a small cabin in the woods to an exquisite home overlooking the lake. While customization is generally seen as the expensive option, it actually gives you more budget control because every feature is hand-chosen by you.
And what does the word “luxury” add to this equation?
A luxury custom home goes above and beyond, giving special attention to high quality. If you want a luxury home, be sure to hire a builder who specializes in luxury as well as customization.
Does a luxury custom home seem to be what you’re looking for?
If so, keep reading!
Where Will You Build Your Home?
As you begin to design your new home, remember that location matters just as much as the actual design of the house. The location influences the design, so it’s best to choose the site first.
Are you planning to build on a lot you already own? Do you dream of a retreat in the forest, by the beach, or on a lake?
Once you’ve nailed down your location, you can think about:
- What style of home works best with the landscape?
- Where to build large windows to capture the best views.
- How to best protect against local weather, such as making sure you have adequate wind shelter.
What Stage of Life are You In?
Next, your home design should take into consideration your current stage of life.
If you have older parents or in-laws who visit frequently, you may choose to build a ground-floor semi-separate living space for them.
If you’re nearing retirement and want a home where you can live out the rest of your days, accessibility will be key; think ground-floor walk-in showers, wide doorways, minimal stairs, and ramps.
On the other hand, if you have children living with you or visiting frequently, you might focus on having plenty of bedrooms, entertainment spaces, and safety features for young children.
Whatever your stage of life, the key to good design is to account for the present while also looking ahead to needs you may have in the future.
What Opportunities Do You Want to Take Advantage of That You Didn’t Have Before?
Most homes have a few things you’d like to change about them, whether it’s a lack of outlets or a master bedroom that’s too close to the noisy TV room.
With a custom luxury home, you get to change that.
- Do you love natural light? Choose beautiful windows that let in morning or evening light
- Are you looking forward to having plenty of bathrooms so getting ready for a night out goes quickly and smoothly – then go for it, and add an extra bathroom.
- You can work out from the comfort of your home in a judgment-free space with a fitness room.
- Have the highest quality drinks on hand all the time with a beautiful wine cellar.
- Keep your children entertained and make memories with your family in a theatre room.
Of course, these are just a few examples of opportunities you’ll be given with a custom luxury home. Just imagine your home that fits your ideal lifestyle and work with your builder to make it a reality.
What Logically Makes Sense?
It’s easy to dream big when designing a custom home, but the home you design must make sense.
For instance, you could have the most beautiful kitchen in the world, but if it’s too far away from the spaces where you like to entertain, you’ll end up frustrated.
Or, you may design a master bath with a gorgeous walk-in shower but end up trekking to the guest bathroom at the other end of the hall when you’re sick and want a good long soak in the tub.
The best way to build a home that makes sense is to:
- Think about the purpose of your home—whether it’s spending quality time with your family, entertaining, or relaxing after a stressful work day—and make sure your home caters to those values.
- Talk to friends and family who have built homes. What has worked well for them? What would they do differently if they had the chance?
- Talk to your builder. They’ve built homes for many people and will likely have good ideas for creating a home that just makes sense.
What Needs or Passions Would You Like to Accommodate?
The wonderful thing about a custom home is that it’s completely personalized.
If you’re shorter than average and have always wanted a custom kitchen with lower kitchen counters and no upper cabinets, you have the opportunity to make this a reality!
If you’re passionate about working out, it’s time to build the home gym of your dreams.
Stop thinking about all the cookie-cutter houses you’ve seen in your life and start thinking about a library with a sliding ladder, a second garage dedicated to restoring classic cars, or a wine cellar full of unique varieties of wine. This is your opportunity to design the home that’s perfect for you.
Note: While building a luxury custom home allows you to get as creative as you want, keep in mind that if you want to sell your home in the future, things that are ultra-customized may negatively affect the resale value.
What Home Styles Are You Drawn To?
Up to this point, we’ve mostly talked about rooms and features in your luxury custom home. But when it comes to the overall design, everything from the facade to the staircases to the ceilings will be influenced by the overall style of your home.
Need some inspiration? Here are some popular home styles:
- Modern style, with sharp angles, industrial materials, and natural light.
- A smaller Cape Cod-style house with a slanting roof and large chimney.
- Craftsman style, with exposed rafters and lots of wood and stone.
- An ornate Victorian-style home with gables, a wrap-around porch, and maybe a turret.
- A snug English cottage straight out of a storybook.
- A Mediterranean-style home with stucco exteriors, red tile roofs, and wrought-iron accents.
- A rustic-style cabin with lots of warm wood, large windows, and a roaring fireplace.
How to Find a Builder for Your Custom Home
Now that you know what you want in your dream home, it’s time to start building!
When it comes to a builder, you can’t be too careful. You need a custom home builder who:
- Has experience building luxury custom homes
- Is committed to high quality
- Is willing to work with you to design the perfect home you envision
- Is properly licensed and committed to following local building codes
Be sure to carefully read reviews, ask for references, and talk at length with your builder before hiring them to make sure they listen to you and are willing and able to make what you’re asking for.
If you live in Ontario and hope to build your dream home in Muskoka, the Kawarthas, Simcoe County, Parry Sound, Southern Georgian Bay, Haliburton, Prince Edward County, Dufferin County, The Durham Region, Peterborough, Hastings County, Toronto, or a similar area, consider working with Gilbert+Burke.
At Gilbert+Burke, we have over 20 years of experience designing and building luxury custom homes, and we’re committed to high-quality and good communication. We want to build you a home that surpasses your expectations.
Besides custom homes, we offer the following services:
Feel free to peruse our portfolio to get a sense of what we offer.
Then, if you’d enjoy a meaningful conversation about your vision for your custom home, contact us today! We would love to hear from you.