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A truly custom home built on your lot. It's what we do. Tips for choosing your builder, land and style of home while keeping it affordable.

To a lot of people, building a new home as opposed to buying one is not only a deeply rewarding experience, but it's satisfying in that the homeowner can build things exactly the way he or she wants. Many people, however, think that building a new home can be out of budget. The good news is that building a new home can be affordable! It all depends on what you are looking for and what you want to spend.

The first step to building a house is to decide what piece of land you'd like to build on. Talking with an experienced builder like AJ Construction and Development and assessing the land (ideally before the land is actually purchased) can give you an idea of the costs and challenges the land may bring. To an untrained eye, a flat lot may look easy to build on, but an experienced builder can tell you that each piece of land may or may not have unique challenges to build on.  

Things to look for in a Builder:

  • Choose a builder with strong experience in on-your-lot builds. Many builders specialize in building on improved lots in communities that already have the infrastructure in place (water, gas, electrical, sewer, etc.). Other builders specialize in building on land that requires improvement. Some builders do both. Make sure your builder has strong build on-your-lot expertise.
  • Select a builder that offers custom floor plans and can adapt a floor plan to the topography of your lot.
  • Make sure the builder has a good warranty program, which typically should include a ten year warranty on certain aspects of the structural integrity of the home.

Finding an experienced builder that you can work well with is an important step when building a new home. But why build new when you can buy an older home and potentially get into a home faster? We have a few good reasons to consider:

  1. Design Your Home Your Way: You can pick everything. From the layout to the flooring to the appliances - and even custom built-ins like window seats and bookcases! You can customize to your tastes, not someone else's.
  2. Choose Your Floor Plan: Master bedroom on the first floor? Second? Even third? Bedrooms together or kept apart? Open floor plan or separate rooms? How do you want your house to flow? Building a home lets you play a part in how your house is put together.
  3. All New, Under Warranty: A used home likely has old products that may soon need replacing. Your new home is brand-new and under warranty. What's the cost to replace a roof, appliances, counter-tops or a water heater in a used home? Those components of your new home feature the latest designs and building materials and should offer you years of comfort and enjoyment before needing replacement.
  4. Energy and Cost Savings: Today's new homes are far more energy efficient than homes built just five years ago. New homes offer double or even triple paned windows as opposed to old, worn-out single pane that let every draft in.
  5. Indoor Air Quality: New, state-of-the-art ventilation and air filtration. The result is year-round, draft-free comfort and higher indoor air quality. Houses just weren't made like that in the past.
  6. Low Maintenance: New homes are made of brand new building products that require less care and maintenance.
  7. Safety: State-of-the-art circuit breakers. Electric garage door openers with infrared beams that stop if a tricycle or child is too near. High-efficiency furnaces and air conditioners that use the latest environmentally-friendly coolants. Cabinets, carpets and paints that use fewer volatile organic compounds, so that you and your family can breathe easier.

Building a new home with an experienced builder like AJ Construction and Development can be a better route for many people. Here are some things to keep in mind to help you get the most bang for your buck!

  • Build a two-story home: The two most expensive parts of any house are the foundation and the roof. Build up, not out, to double your square footage! Building up allows you to add square footage without adding more costly roof and foundation area. It's a smart move!
  • Keep it simple: The least expensive homes are simple rectangles and squares. If you're looking for a unique look, you can add curb appeal with great colors and something along the lines of a great front porch.
  • Don't over think the roof: A simple, not too steep roof will protect your investment over time. Making roof lines too complex is not only more expensive, but it can increase your chance of leaks.
  • Keep the plumbing together: Make sure to plan your heavy plumbing areas, including the kitchen, laundry room, and bathrooms in close proximity to each other. This reduces the cost of running plumbing all over the house.
  • Splurge on insulation: A well insulated house will not only save energy in the long run, it will save you money today by reducing the amount you need to spend on larger heating and air-conditioning equipment to heat or cool the house.
  • Bring the outdoors inside: An easy way to make small entertainment areas work overtime is to expand them by adding relatively inexpensive decks and patios with direct access to living and family rooms.

Contact AJ Construction and Development to discuss the potential of building a new home! With 30 years of experience, we can guide you every step of the way, from assessing your land and the cost of making it buildable, to designing your dream house to help you get the most out of it. We have the experience and skills to save you the most money while getting the job done, on time and with the highest of quality!


Serving Tri-Cities, Washington. Pasco, Kennewick, Richland, West Richland, Benton City, Burbank, and Finley Washington.