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Frequently Asked Questions


"How does having a house built compare economically with buying a pre-built house?"
It depends on your motives for purchasing a home.

If you intend to “work your way up” to a custom home, a fixer upper may be the way to go.  Young couples with little equity or down payment, may choose to purchase an older home and create some “sweat equity” upon which to borrow on and build later.

If you already own the land, are paying cash, or can qualify for a healthy mortgage, building a new house will almost certainly be less expensive.  Older or used houses present unique situations.  Depending on what obviously needs to be repaired or replaced, the work that will definitely need to be done which was not apparent at the time of purchase (septic, well, etc,) and considering what may need to be remodeled to suit your particular needs or desires, then the actual “price” could increase tremendously.
“I have a piece of land. Can you build a house on it?”
After our first meeting, I will visit the site and we can discuss placement of the house, determine the view you are looking for, and address any issues regarding the terrain that may effect how we proceed.

Terrain may or may not present a challenge.  Depending on the site, the type of house feasible may not be what you want.  If there is no existing or apparent pad site upon which to build, part of the house may have to be “cut” into a slope.  There may not be any usable front or back yard area, or perhaps the drive way may be either extremely steep or downward sloping (which in certain circumstances may pose a water run-off problem.)  If you already own land in such terrain, groundwork to create a suitable pad and driveway can be a considerable cost.  If you are considering purchasing a piece of land in the Sierra Foothills, the above issues should be carefully considered.
“What is the process involved in getting water, power and septic onto a parcel of land?”
There are many variables.  However, in general, getting water requires getting a well drilled, pumped and piped to the structure.  An application must be submitted to Pacific Gas & Electric, and we advise doing it as much as a year prior to construction. Regarding septic, a CSLB licensed contractor will either dig profile holes or conduct a perk test and make recommendations.  Any of these can cost more than expected, and should be considered carefully when purchasing property.
“How long does it take to build a house from the ground up?”
Again, many variables exist such as square footage, elaborate design, terrain, and here in the mountains, the weather.  Ground breaking to turn key can take anywhere from six to twelve months.  Most of our houses are built between six and nine months.
“Do you offer custom house plans or do I need to supply my own?”

We have six different “standard” floor plans that we present for consideration.  Each one can be customized to suit your needs.  We welcome your own plans as well.  Whether it be blueprints you have purchased, or something you envisioned and drew on a napkin that we can have plans made from.   No two homeowners or houses are alike.  As the client, your new home should be a reflection of you.

“What is your service area?”

Our general service areas are Mariposa and Madera Counties, including the following: Ahwahnee, Oakhurst, Coarsegold, Raymond, North Fork, Fish Camp, Bass Lake, Wawona, Yosemite National Park, Coulterville, Don Pedro, Catheys Valley, and Hornitos.

“Do you offer contracting services to remodel my home?”

Yes, we remodel existing structures.  Depending on what is needed, some aspects are hired out to subcontractors.  We also do additions, garages, carports, decks, and patios.

 
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