Are you thinking of building the custom home of your dreams in the DC area?

Maybe you’ve been designing your dream kitchen in your head for years, but there’s one thing on your mind — where do you start and how do you accurately calculate your expenditures?

We won’t sugar coat it, it’s not a simple answer! But we have done all the math for you so you can get a sense of what your custom home will cost.

So, without further ado, let’s get to our step-by-step guide to help you estimate the total cost of your custom home.

Figure Out Cost Per Square Foot

The very first thing you need to know is the cost per square foot in your desired area. The pricing of land varies from state to state and community to community. Maryland and Northern Virginia are highly desirable areas, but can also vary depending on which neighborhood you are targeting. Sometimes prices vary from street to street!

Specifics like proximity to the Beltway, a particular school district, or walkability to the local market can influence the pricing of a lot. Don’t forget to add in the cost of property taxes and potential HOA and community pool membership fees of a particular neighborhood.

Foundation and Framing

The cost of the foundation can be estimated at about $17 per square foot. Depending on the foundation type, area, material, labor, and specialty equipment, the total cost elevates. You might even need to pay more for getting the construction team to remove obstacles from your land or if your land is located on a hillside. The basic framing might cost you somewhere around $43 per square foot.

Inspection and Site Work Costs

Before building the house from scratch, you need to consider the inspection and site work the land requires.

This includes:

  • Grading
  • Engineering consults
  • Erosion control
  • Sewer fee
  • Electrical temp pole, and others.

You might be tempted to skip out on some of these expenses when calculating the cost of the custom house, but these are the integral parts as they define the longevity and durability of the foundation you are going to build.

So, be mindful to consider these factors when summing up the cost required for building your dream home.

Interior and Exterior Finishes

The interior and exterior finishes make up the character of any house and are certainly vital to consider when calculating the cost. Many people forget to add the costs for the details they want for their custom-built dream houses, which costs them later.

The durability of the roof and the exterior wall finishing, for example, are some major parts of this pool. Also, don’t forget to add your custom details like installing state-of-the-art smart home capabilities or having an extraordinary outdoor living space, into the sum.

Create a Budget & Track Potential Expenses

It is important to consider all factors and components involved in building a custom house which is incredibly tricky. To keep track of it all, we recommend creating a home budget that breaks down the potential expenses for each part of your custom home design and build project.

Doing so will allow you to take the guesswork out of the equation and get a precise amount of cost and quantity of material required for constructing your dream home. Not only that, but you’ll take the stress, fear, and anxiety out of the process. Proper budgeting is part of a well-executed plan which allows you to focus on the fun rather than the figures.