Whenever we start working with a new client, especially one that has never built a custom home before, we always warn them that delays will happen. Delays are so common in construction it’s actually rare not to have at least one. As frustrating as delays are, they typically can’t be avoided. Delays happen for a number of reasons but these are the most common ones.
Unless a project is just an interior remodel, a lot of it gets done outside. Unfortunately, that means the weather dictates a lot. A good project manager will monitor weather predictions and schedule accordingly. Home builders make an effort to prioritize work that can be done outside on days with good weather, and inside wood on bad weather days. However, weather can be unpredictable and it’s the most common reason that delays happen.
During the planning stage, a custom home builder will give the homeowner a rough timeline and completion date. Good builders know to be accurate rather than optimistic. A shorter time schedule sounds appealing, but over-promising and under-delivering always end up being bad for both the builder and owner. Good communication means being honest, which is why we always give our clients realistic timelines rather than risk delays or rushing.
Scope refers to what work is included in the construction project. During the planning stage, it’s important that everyone working on the project understands what is getting done. This allows for proper budgeting and scheduling. Scope creep is a major cause for delay and happens when extra work is added or missed originally. This means that construction has to stop while everything gets worked out again. Scope creep can happen from owners making too many changes late in the process, or from miscommunication between subcontractors. Either way, it causes delays, which isn’t ideal.
Part of the planning stage of a custom home build is establishing a budget. Homeowners should ensure they have proper financing in place before they even begin the planning stage so that they can set a realistic budget. Not having enough money prohibits the purchase of materials or paying contractors on time. This results in delays until more finances become available. Always be honest about your budget in order to avoid delays, which in the end can cost more money.
At Sina Architectural Design, we believe communication is the most important aspect of a successful build. Communication is what keeps a project running smoothly. Miscommunication or inadequate communication can easily derail the build and cause delays. It could mean the wrong materials get ordered or that a subcontractor was scheduled for the wrong day. To keep a custom home build on schedule all parties have to work together to communicate effectively.
What sets a custom home apart from a regular one is the level of detail in the house. This could mean using high-end materials or new products to make the house stand apart from the rest. One of the most common reasons for delays has to do with ordering materials. A certain desired material might be out of stock, get lost on delivery, or accidentally have the wrong item be delivered. A good contractor puts some padding around delivery in case this happens, but sometimes it’s unavoidable. We always try to make up for it or come up with alternatives though.
Delays are never fun, but they’re unfortunately apart of building a custom home. We always do our best to plan and compensate when they happen though. By far the worst thing about delays is the extra stress they add to our clients. That’s why we always mentally prepare our clients for them to happen. Feel free to contact us to learn more to get started building your custom home today!