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Find your ideal home: the difference between project and custom building

Find your ideal home: the difference between project and custom building
April 3, 2018 Faith McGregor
project custom building

Find your ideal home: the difference between project and custom building

Building a new home is a demanding yet thrilling endeavour. You get to be part of the process and a witness to the construction of your soon-to-be sanctuary. Furthermore, you have an opportunity to plan your dream home that will reflect your style and personality. However, one of the major decisions you need to make before taking this step is whether you should go with project or custom building. Considering the fact that this is one of the biggest investments in your life, it’s important that you research your options thoroughly and make sure to pick the one that meets your needs. Thus, you should consider both pros and cons of both project and custom building before making the final decision.

The difference between project and custom building

There’s an important distinction between project and custom building. Custom building is a type of construction that entails building unique, “one of a kind” homes that meet specific requirements of each homeowner. In this case, you meet with a custom builder and a designer to plan and build your dream home according to your needs and personal preferences.

Project building, on the other hand, refers to building “off-the-plan” homes, according to a single design. This means that your home will be built following the original home design that has been used on previous occasions. In other words, in the case of project building, a single home design is used for multiple clients with little to no alterations.

With that in mind, display homes are available mostly in the case of project building since they are built according to a “pattern”. When it comes to custom building, you’ll be able to see homes under construction and previous designs because each home is unique in its own way.

Speed and period of construction

project custom building speed

The period of home construction is one of the aspects you need to consider when choosing between project and custom building. This period can vary, but it typically takes up to nine months for a project home to be completed. Sometimes, the construction can even be done in four months since there’s no need for planning and consultation processes. The construction of a custom home can be completed in 12 to 15 months since your builder needs to come up with a custom plan for your home. Thus, if you’re in a hurry and need to move to a new home as soon as possible, project building is a quicker option. However, it’s important to stress that speed isn’t a crucial factor that you need to consider. It’s always better to allow time for your home to be built properly and according to your needs.

Design and layout options

project custom building design

Considering the fact that project homes are designed according to a single plan that follows a specific pattern, you won’t have many design options. Although there’s a possibility for change, alterations are typically minimal.

Custom homes, on the other hand, are designed for each individual separately. You’ll be able to meet with a builder and architect, spend time with them and come up with a plan that reflects your style and needs. In Australia, for example, homeowners prefer custom building because it allows them to give their home a personal touch. In fact, reputable luxury home builders in Sydney offer individualised home plans in an attempt to provide their clients with their dream homes. Thus, if you want a home that truly feel yours, custom building is a much better option. In addition, you may even get the copyright of your home plans and make sure that no one else can use them.

Land dimensions

project custom building land

The dimensions and location of the land where you’re planning to build your home will also affect your decision whether to go with custom or project building. Namely, the land block with a slope of two or three metres won’t be suitable for a great number of project home designs. In fact, project builders have a limited number of floor plans for such a land block. On the flip side, custom builders will create a plan appropriate for the specific characteristics of your land block. They will also take different factors into consideration, including the block shape, orientation to natural light and others.

Site management and meetings

Another important difference between project and custom building lies in client involvement. Namely, when it comes to project buildings, clients aren’t typically allowed on the building site. This means that you won’t be a part of the process. On the other hand, custom builders encourage their clients to be present during the construction. Furthermore, site managers often offer their clients new ideas on how to enhance the functionality or design of their homes, keeping them involved every step of the way. Not only does this demonstrate the involvement of customer builders, but it also strengthens the client-builder relationship.

Although both project building and custom building have their advantages and disadvantages, custom building provides you with more freedom and flexibility when it comes to your home design. By opting for a custom home, you’ll be able to have your dream home tailored to your needs and taste.


Author bio: Faith McGregor is a writer, seeking beauty and happiness everywhere she goes and finding it in her work, family, and home. Passionate about just living life to the fullest, she’s into home decor and healthy lifestyle, trying to be the best version of herself and make her surroundings match.


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    The views and opinions expressed in this communication are those of the author and may not necessarily state or reflect those of REALas.