Linwood Custom Homes - Custom home packages including house plans

Award winning Custom Home Packages including house plans with site specific design.

All Weather Windows

Canada's largest privately owned window and door manufacturer

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC)

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) is Canada's national housing agency. CMHC is Canada's premier provider of mortgage loan insurance, mortgage-backed securities, housing policy and programs, and housing research

Energy Star

Save money and protect the environment through energy efficient products

James Hardie

World leader in fiber cement siding and backerboard

Jeldwen Windows & Doors (Canada)

Reliable wood, vinyl and aluminum windows and patio doors

Western Archrib

A leader in the design, manufacture, and custom fabrication of glued-laminated structural wood systems.

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Building It Right

Getting the best result

in building a custom home requires attention-to-detail and a good understanding of the construction process. There are many tasks to be completed which require skilled people to manage them.

The objective for most people who build a new home is to get a valuable return on the investment and a home that fits their lifestyle needs. Value is created when your finished home is worth more to you than the cost of construction.

  • Planning Your Project
  • Preparing a Construction Budget
  • Timing Your Build
  • Sourcing and Delivering Materials
  • Home Building Tips

Keep in mind that there are no shortcuts to achieving a successful result when building your home. It takes expertise, good planning and proper management to build your home right.


Planning Your Project

Good up-front planning saves time and money and helps you to stay in control of your project. Gatineau Home Builders takes your design concept and helps you develop a realistic budget before you start construction.

Because construction is largely a sequential process, resources need to be scheduled on a timely basis. When building components or manpower is not available at the jobsite, it will cause a ripple effect. Trades that are booked for jobs will be delayed and the building completion timeline may be affected. It is often difficult to reschedule trades as they may be busy doing other work.

For this reason, changes to the design once the project has been started can be a major cause of increased costs and time delays. On-site changes that may seem simple can result in structural design issues and the need for additional materials and construction resources.

The key is to planning ahead is to include all the variables in the building process. This enables you to monitor performance against your budget on a timely basis and make decisions that minimize risk. Gatineau Home Builders can help you in this process.

Preparing a Construction Budget

There are many variables that will affect the costs of constructing your home. The amount you need to budget for will be dependent on the size, location and complexity of the project. Gatineau Home Builders helps customers understand the difference between "home construction costs" and "total project costs". Home construction includes the type of design you choose, the quality of finishing products you select and other considerations relating to construction. Total project costs consider site improvement, site preparation and availability of services.

Gatineau Home Builders helps homeowners develop a realistic budget estimate that considers the details of the whole project using the proprietary Custom Builder XPM ™ estimating software. This provides comfort to homeowners that they can rely on a proper budget before construction work begins. This process also helps financial institutions validate the project when evaluating construction loans.

Using quotes based on simplistic per square foot pricing for the whole project in your budget can cause major problems. This approach is usually unrealistic and can result in substantial budget overruns. Homeowners do not want to find themselves in a situation where they cannot complete the project if the cost of materials and work involved has been underestimated.


Timing Your Project

People not familiar with the construction process often underestimate the time it takes to complete the project. Taking a project to completion will depend on the size of home, location of property, complexity of construction and frequency of inspections.

Another important factor that influences timing is weather conditions. Some parts of the Gatineau area have moderate snowfalls while higher elevations can experience intense snowfall and lower temperatures. This means planning the build is extremely important.

Activity From (wks) Up to (wks)
Selecting Design & Materials 8 12
Permits and Approvals 2 20
Construction and Inspections 15 38
Projected time to occupancy 25 70

You need to make sure you choose a design that is appropriate for the area and considers structural issues. For example, roof support structures will have to be engineered to meet requirements for snow loading.

Permits should be in place as early as possible to allow foundations to be poured between April and October. Once foundations have been poured, actual construction can happen anytime. Gatineau Home Builders can help you plan to get your project started at the best time.


Sourcing and Delivering Materials

Gatineau Home Builders serves the local and surrounding area. We are experienced in dealing with the special issues that arise when building in this region. We mainly work on projects within a one hour drive from Gatineau.

The area around Gatineau consists of a number of small population centers and is time consuming to get to a major commercial center. Not only is it important to plan ahead for local delivery of materials, it is even more important to have alliances with major national suppliers.

Gatineau Home Builders has formed an alliance with proven national suppliers to ensure quality building materials are available when they are needed. These companies have the ability supply a full range of brand name building products to any region at everyday low prices. Our local suppliers support us with readily available standard products needed in construction. This gives our customers the best of both worlds and saves them money.


Home Building Tips

Due to the complexity of construction, it is essential to select people who can manage and build your new home. Few homeowners are able to take on the whole project without relying on a team of professionals.

Building a custom home successfully requires attention-to-detail and a good understanding of the construction process. There are many tasks to be completed, which require skilled people to manage them. The objective for most people who build a new home is to get a valuable return on the investment and a home that fits their lifestyle needs. Value is created when your finished home is worth more to you than the cost of construction. Keep in mind that there are no shortcuts to achieving any of these outcomes. It takes expertise, good planning and a proper control mechanism to get the best possible result.

General Contractors

It is important to select a general contractor who is qualified for your type of project and can complete it for the quoted price in an acceptable time frame. You also need someone you can trust to manage and schedule the right builders and trades.

It is equally important to evaluate your general contractor based on the expertise offered and the ability to see the project through. Contractors need to be properly insured so they do not transfer the risk of injury and damage related lawsuits to the homeowner. A contractor's business liability insurance can protect you if your home is damaged by the contractor or his employees or if he causes damage or injury to third parties.

Having a meaningful written construction contract is essential. The key elements are scope of work, procedures for changes, payment terms and provisions for sign off at the time of completion. The construction contract should also address responsibility for work-related injuries, damages to third parties and property damage (builder's risk insurance).

Design and Materials

There are many design possibilities and thousands of building components with different performance characteristics to choose from. The first step is to develop a concept design. Typically people start with a look or an interior layout that they like. This is then taken to a preliminary plan, which can be used to develop to generate blueprints and a rough budget.

The next step is to spend adequate time to choose the right materials. Changes are far more costly when they are made during construction. Material purchasing requires a special skill set. It takes a professional looking at finalized blueprints to accurately determine the right quantity of materials needed.

Permits

Building permits need to be in place before you can start construction. Some land preparation can take place prior to permits, but you need to be aware of the local guidelines that may restrict this work. Some of the issues involved in getting permits are:

  • Availability of finalized blueprints
  • Local building regulations
  • Processing time and seasonal workloads of planning departments

Apply for permits as soon as you have your construction blueprints. The objective is to obtain all approvals so that you can get foundations in place prior to peak season or adverse weather conditions. You can always delay construction, but you can't move it forward without permits

Site Preparation

Preparing the building site includes clearing the land and excavating so that foundations can be formed and concrete poured when the weather conditions are right.

  • Clearing
  • Excavation / Backfill
  • Driveway / Walkway
  • Foundation

It is important to get the foundations in place as soon as blueprints are available and permits have been obtained. Cement cannot be poured below freezing temperatures or other adverse weather conditions without special procedures.

Lock-up

At this stage the building inspector has approved the work done to complete the exterior structure of the home to lock-up. Based on this milestone approval, a progress or final payment to the contractor must be made. The home is now weatherproof, secure and ready for to take to the completion and occupancy phase. You are now able to finish the home at your own pace and on your own timetable.

Occupancy

Occupancy means that your home is ready for you to live in. You may choose to work with the general contractor or hire trades directly to complete the exterior and interior of the home to occupancy. Working with an interior designer may be helpful in arranging the purchase and installation of flooring, cabinets and millwork.


Gatineau Home Builders - Member of Ontario Builder Network - 1.866.582.8453