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Customizing Your New House Plan
By Alice Lane
You decided to build your new dream home and right from the start began searching for the perfect stock plan. However, after searching for many hours you have yet to fall in love with any certain plan. You can't afford to invest in entirely custom drawn home plans and you are just about to give up hope that this dream home is out there but don't quit yet! The solution is right in front of you and it won't break your budget.

Somewhere in those hours of reviewing stock plans, you probably came across a plan or two that was almost exactly what you were looking for, whether it be small cottage home plans or Spanish mission houseplans. Perhaps you want a slightly different exterior or you need one room to be slightly larger. Maybe you wish the garage entry was placed differently or the master bath had a larger shower and smaller linen closet. All of these changes are options when it comes to customizing stock plans to fit your particular needs. Many home design designers and architects that develop stock home plans have modifications available for their house plans. Taking advantage of these options allows you to turn an "almost-perfect" plan into the dream home you absolutely love - and at a much more affordable cost than entirely customizing your dream home and starting from scratch!

Modifications to stock plans typically change some structure of the plan - from moving an interior wall, altering the exterior facade, or swapping out one foundation for another. To take advantage of these customizations, you need to be aware of your dream home's needs. Keep in mind the following limitations:

Know your lot - Before setting your heart on a specific stock plan with modifications, be familiar with your lot. Is it sloping or will it be leveled out? What is the water table? Is a finished basement practical or should you look for a plan with a second floor bonus room? Can you build a house plans ranch walkout basement?

Look ahead - Right now your family of three is perfectly comfortable in a two-bedroom house. However, what about a year or even five years from now? New additions to the family will need their own space, from children's nurseries to elderly parents who may need to move in with you. You cannot always perfectly anticipate your family's needs, but preparing now by finding a plan with an extra bathroom or a multifunctional bonus room is a terrific idea. In addition to space, look for plans that will allow easy incorporation of technological advances as well as good future resale value.

Know your weather - The weather and climate not only affects the way you dress but also the way you outfit your home. New England homes have peaked roofs so heavy snow will fall off the roof rather than cave it in. Coastal homes that face tornado and hurricane assaults have flat roofs that help avoid detrimental wind damage. Be aware of what your dream home will need to avoid unnecessary work and expensive repair in the future.

"Almost" does not cut it - The most important thing is to love the plan you choose and the modifications you've decided to make to it. If something still isn't right, do not ignore that feeling. Take time to look over the plan carefully. Look at a few more stock plans and see if modifying a different plan would be easier. Remember that customizations are being done to get exactly what you want, not just as-close-as possible.

Once you have determined the modifications you desire, it's time to get them started! Depending on the stock plan you choose, the process may differ. Be prepared to submit a modification request form that should include detailed explanations of the modifications desired. And referring to the rooms as they are on the stock plan will make it a quicker and easier process. A quote will be returned to you within days. Accepting this quote will lead to approving drafts, and sooner rather than later you will be ready to start building.

At times the process to get the dream home you imagine may seem daunting. But, with a little patience and attention to detail, it is surely not impossible. Remember that designers and architects also benefit from your modification requests. By hearing directly from the customer what does and does not work for them, entirely new plans are often designed. And in the end, these enhanced plans turn your dream home into a reality for others looking for the perfect home. If your looking for small cottage home plans, spanish mission houseplans or even house plans ranch walkout basement, visit House Plans and More Today!
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