When working on the design of a new home and engaging in discussions with potential builders you can't afford any mistakes or miscommunication. You will need to live with any mistakes for many years after the builders have left your property so it is vital to spend the needed time to get everything right from the start.
What can you afford?
You can only build what you can afford, and you have to consider the costs involved in both purchasing the lot and then building the property. Try to get the finances arranged as early as possible. This will give you a clear idea of the property you afford to build and you can ensure that any new home designs that you consider are priced to come within your budget.
What will your home look like?
New home builders have a lot to think about even once the location for the property is agreed. You must consider a general design for the property, which amenities you need in your property, and the materials that will be used to build the new home. Each of these decisions will impact on the others. Your property may need to fit into the surrounding area, so consider the style of the other properties and the features already in existence near your location when designing your home and thinking about the materials you will use both to create structure, and externally to blend into the neighbourhood.
Now, talk to your builder
Experienced new home builders will be able to talk to you about methods of building construction, the most suitable materials to use, and to offer advice on every aspect of the building process. Sit down with a builder and carefully talk through the specifics of your build. Builders often have their own preferred methods of construction and some like to make their own choice of building materials so agree a final plan with the builder and then ask for a quotation for the total cost of the project. Always obtain quotations from multiple builders and where the quotations vary substantially find out why. Do both quotes include the same things? Are different grades of materials being proposed? It is the decisions being made at this stage that will affect your enjoyment of the property, and may potentially cost you more in the longer-term so find out exactly what is included in each quotation.
Only when you are satisfied that both you and the builder have thoroughly covered every aspect of the proposed build and agree on exactly what is being proposed should you go ahead and engage the builder to start construction work.