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New construction

Get ready for the ride of your life...

Custom-building your own home is, in the end, the best way to get the dream-home you envisioned. It is also one of the most stress- ful things people undertake. Emotionally, financially and fff-ly, building a house is a roller-coaster. Once the first hole is dug, there is no stopping and no time to reflect. It is top-speed full- pressure for a year or more to get to the finish. The key to keeping your sanity as well as your liquidity is having as much as possible figured out before you start. As a rule of thumb, building a house needs a decision for every $10 you spend. It can be a small thing like the location of an outlet, it can be a huge thing like a type of flooring, but the sheer number of details that needs to be specified is amazingly huge. This is where we at CLD believe the difference comes in between an Architect, a Designer and a Contractor. Architects (in general) look at lines, flow, shape and orientation, and are rarely detail-oriented. If the details don’t work, that becomes the contractor’s job to improvize. Contractors (in general) want to keep things moving, and details are, well, details. They just “do”, and if it turns out they assumed right, they did good; if it turns out they assumed wrong, they get paid to fix it. For either party, there is no down-side other than your budget. This is why CLD recommends having a designer on the project. We have detailed checklists, by room, of all the decisions needed to be made. Then, we document all of the decisions in clear Scope of Work (SOW) documents and purchasing specifications by trade and for the general contractor. Having these SOW’s as well as a comprehensive set of drawings by trade ensures that quotes are accurate, that subsequent surprises are minimal, and that the timeline and budget are realistic all through the build process. Proof that our system works? We designed and managed the build of a 5,000 sf / $850,000 custom home in Jonestown, and the project came in 2 weeks early (on 14 months) and on budget. It had all of the set-backs every construction site has with weather, people, materials etc, but the CLD Design System handled each of them without panic and without cost overruns.

Check-list for a contractor:

Have all the permits been pulled &

approved? Have the structure &

foundation been approved by an


Are all custom selections (tile, fixtures, flooring, lighting) for each space done and quoted for price and availability? Are all of the trades (plumbing, electrical, tile, carpentry) selected, and have they quoted for price and schedule based on a written SOW? Have they arranged for a dumpster, on-site locked storage,a porta-potty? Who has overall liability, and do they have appropriate insurance coverage? Do you have a signed copy of the overall project SOW, the payment schedule and the rules on change- orders? Do you have a copy of their W-9 and insurance paperwork?