Building a new custom home is an exciting yet daunting process, but the outcome is always worth the wait. Once you find the right builder, a typical custom home build can range, on average, from 5-7 months and depends greatly on the homes location, size, style, and characteristics. But what exactly goes on in those 5-7 months? Below is a detailed timeline of everything that goes into creating the custom home of your dreams.

Choosing a location:

The first and most important decision that goes into building a custom house is where to put it. Location is key, and so often this stage is long and arduous. Choosing a community that meets all your criteria, such as being in a renowned school district, with low crime rates, and close to public transportation, can sometimes be difficult. In many cases, once you find the right builder, they offer developments or properties that you can choose from which makes this stage much simpler. Having an idea as too the size of your house is also very important because the dimensions of the property will determine the size of the house that can be built on it.

**This step is not included in the 5-7-month average because the length of time that people spend looking at properties varies dramatically.

Designing your dream home:

Choosing a location and designing your home can often be done in the reverse order, or even at the same time depending on the builder. This is the stage that your visions, inspirations, and dreams are put onto paper. Things such as how many bedrooms and bathrooms you need, the desired square footage, and whether you want a finished basement, is all determined at this point. An architect will draft floor plans to meet the specifications or you can choose from a set of pre-designed plans and tweak them to your liking. Typically the initial design stage takes about 3-5 weeks, but will vary by the complexity of the home and how much is customized.

Site preparation:

This step requires little to no client involvement and typically takes about a week. After the plans are finalized, permits are approved and granted, and the contractors are hired, the site gets prepped and ground is broken! This is an exciting stage because it’s the first sign of physical progress for your new home.

Triple F’s:

The term “Triple F’s” refers to footings, foundation, and framing. Footings are the concrete supports that secure a home’s foundation. Without them, the home would literally crumble overtime so they are extremely important. After the footings pass inspection the concrete foundation is poured and you can begin to visualize the homes future floorplan. The final step here is to install the homes skeleton by framing it with wood. Rooms start to take shape and the house is clearly coming together. Overall this stage takes around 2-3 weeks.

The workings:

Now that the home has a skeleton, it can be filled with all the mechanicals that make it functional. Electrical, plumbing, heating and air conditioning all get installed during this stage, which takes between 2-3 weeks. After everything is installed within the walls, they will get closed up with insulation and drywall. Once this is completed, you really get a feel for the layout of the house and can begin to visualize the final product.

Flooring and paint:

Up until now the house is a mix of industrial materials like concrete, wood, and drywall, but now the fun can begin. Colors are chosen and the walls get painted, tile and hardwood gets installed and the once boring colored box is now vibrant and lively. Visualizing furniture placement and room layouts is now much easier and you can imagine the living spaces that you will soon inhabit. Depending on the complexity of the tile designs or if the hardwood is prefinished or will be stained on site, this step can take anywhere between 2-4 weeks.

fixtures and appliancesFixtures and appliances:

This stage is where all the pieces start to come together. The delivery trucks will arrive daily with all the appliance selections that were made weeks ago. The kitchen gets its cabinets, counters, ovens, fridge, microwave, and faucets. The bathrooms get bathtubs, shower heads, vanities, and toilets. Laundry rooms get a new washer and dryer. Everything that makes a house a home is installed and ready for use! As long as everything was ordered on time, this stage only takes about a week or two.

Final Countdown:

The end is in sight and homeowners are anxious to finally move into their new home. The last two weeks are also very important though because it is the time to ask the builder any and all questions regarding the new home. This is also the time to make sure that everything is in order and nothing was forgotten, warranty papers are filed, and the house is cleaned and ready for move in.


The last and most anticipated moment of the entire process. Homeowners will do a walk-trough with the builder and make a punch list of things that need to be fixed or corrected. This is also the time to learn how to work all the new features of the home. Finally, the keys are exchanged and its move in time!