Make sure you compare "Apples to Apples"
When selecting a custom home builder it is important to inquire about the building techniques the builder uses. What makes a house a quality built home? Generally, it is not what you see but what is don't see. A house might have beautiful trim and finishes, but it is behind the walls and under the dirt that makes the difference. Building Codes are the "minimum" and we feel that it is important to go "beyond the code " to build a quality home that will stand the test of time. Check with our older homeowners and ask them. Structural integrity is our top priority. Two houses might be the same square footage but might be very different when it comes to quality. So always compare "apples to apples", " features to features" and "products to products" when selecting a custom home builder.
A few examples of "beyond the code" building techniques: (see photos below)
Tuff-n- Dri waterproofing - This is not just damp-proofing but Tuff-n-Dri has a warranty to keep a basement "dry" We even go beyond this by paying for extra gravel and filter cloth to the french drain to insure that silt will not get into the french drain.
Framing - look at the unfinished areas of a house. Are the joints tight with clean cuts? We double up the joists under kitchen islands so you never have that "rattle" when someone walks by. We also support fireplaces with LVL's and extra supports. We use extra glue, nails and screws on the subfloor. Extra supports throughout house that are well beyond what is code.
Concrete - This is code now but we have doing these techniques for years. All slabs and driveways are poured with 3000 psi with added rebar in all critical areas. Grade beams are under the walls in basement. 4 inches of gravel and 6 mill poly vapor barrier are under slabs
Structural engineer - We use a structural engineer throughout the building of house to inspect or advise, as well as the county inspectors. Engineered floor systems, retaining walls, decks, etc
TechShield Radiant Barrier Sheathing - This type of sheathing can lower the temperature in the attic up to 30 degrees than regular sheathing that is code. Will save on energy bills. Home Builders Association is pushing to have this as a standard code by 2020
Steel engineered decks - Again, we go beyond code and use an engineered steel deck that with a poured concrete pad for stone or tile with copper counter flashing
Standard Code Energy savers- Full house wrap on all exterior walls, special insulated low "E" windows and doors, special caulking at all exterior walls , zoned heating and air.
Humidifiers/ Dehumidifiers - Humidifier is added to HVAC system for the main floor . Dehumidifier is added to HVAC system for the basement level.
Custom cabinets - Custom cabinets not manufactured box cabinets. These cabinets can be customized for each house. Custom cabinets have dovetail drawers , soft close drawers , seeded glass doors, panels for appliances and extra storage throughout the kitchen and master baths.
Stoops - Stoops will not separate from the house....we have stoop arms in the foundation, back- fill the foundation and add the stoop after the concrete walkway is poured. Extra steel and fibers are added to the concrete walkway. A "masonry" stoop is then put on top of the concrete. So no possible separation is possible
Plumbing - high end plumbing materials used. Cast iron or americast tubs
Electricial - LED lighting, dimmers, extras throughout the houses
And many more.......would love to tell you all about them.....