Get answers to questions about how to build a new custom home in North Carolina – with information for first time home buyers as well as experienced buyers.

What is a multigenerational home?

Multigenerational homes (sometimes called multi-gen homes, homes with a mother in law suite, or apartment within a home) are designed for families to live together within one single home family dwelling that has an extended guest suite intended for long term stays.

Multigenerational homes are one of the most common reasons why homebuyers choose to build a custom home.

Benefits of a multi-gen home include:

  • Multi-gen homes can spread out the cost of living so that the combined living space is more affordable than having two separate homes. Site costs for one home are less expensive than site costs for two homes, with one clearing, one footing, one septic system, and one foundation. The size of the footprint impacts build costs, so multi-gen homes built with living space on additional floors are typically more cost effective than homes with everyone on one level.
  • Some multigenerational homes have a kitchenette in the secondary living quarters, for increased independence. Other families choose to design a larger kitchen around expanded usage, with elements such as dual ovens, a huge island or even two islands for more prep space, and special arrangements such as a microwave below the counter for easier use and aging-in-place future accessibility. Learn more about making changes to your floor plan, here.
  • Dual master suites give equal prominence to two large bedroom suites with ensuite private bathrooms, big closets and occasionally other private amenities such as a personal sitting area or attached office or laundry room. The location of dual master suites can vary, with the most common arrangements being one on the main floor and one on the second floor, one in the basement, or both on the main floor. Get floor plans with dual master bedrooms, here.
  • Because schedules and lifestyles can vary within shared living arrangements, building in special features that add to privacy is a very good reason to build a custom home, so that you have the opportunity to include features such as sound dampening between walls or from one floor to another. Solid core door options can also lessen sound travel. A private entrance so you can come and go without interrupting the main flow of the house is another way to increase that feeling of having your own space. Depending on the plan and your homesite, you may include an exterior door with a small stoop or porch or another door from the garage to your private hallway.
Multigenerational New Homes

Travars Built Homes can be built in custom home neighborhoods or countryside locations within about an hour of Chapel Hill. We work closely with you to:

Contact us to learn more.

What are the most important questions to ask a home builder?

Are you asking the right questions when you talk with custom builders about costs for your new home?

Here are 7 smart questions to ask custom home builders about their services, processes, and prices – before you sign a contract.

What are the most important questions to ask a home builder?
  1. What’s included in your services? Travars Built Homes is a design/build custom home builder. We cover everything from permits to site assessment, plan modification, construction and completion of your home. We offer the highest quality standard features, finishes, materials and craftsmanship in the local market for affordable custom homes. Read more about our services and standards, here.
  2. Can you help me find a floor plan that can fit my budget? Yes, we will make suggestions for floor plans based on the budget you give us. When we go over plans together, we’ll offer suggestions for layouts and livability of the home, and tell you why certain types of architectural designs take more to build than others, even when layouts may appear to be similar. (Having the same number of square feet does not equate to the same build costs – specialty treatments and detail work in an architectural design that you might not even notice can make a huge impact on your build costs, even when layouts appear to be similar.) We can suggest modifications or alternate plans that can be more cost effective.  
  3. Can you modify my floor plan? Do I need to pay an architect or is the price of modifications included with your home price? Travars Built Homes can make a wide variety of changes to your plan, at no extra charge. We can re-arrange the kitchen, include an in-law or multigenerational suite, add a basement, or convert a two story room into a bonus room upstairs. Ask us about your floor plan – we’ll show you all the possibilities.  
  4. What kind of details can I expect to see in a custom home quote? Your Travars Built spec package will include about 15 pages of details about the materials, processes, services, and energy efficiencies in your home. Keep in mind that you can only compare what is given to you in writing – that’s what will be in your contract.
  5. How much interaction will you have with me when my new home is being built? Our build process at Travars Built Homes is outlined in your personal online portal, where you can stay in-touch and informed about what’s happening with the build of your new home. You will also have the opportunity to meet with your builder on site at all key points during the build. 
  6. Is my site work (such as grading, clearing, driveway, septic, well) included in your pricing? When you choose Travars Built Homes, your site work is allowance based. We allocate dollar amounts for your clearing, grading, footings, etc. The allowances are based on footprint size, topography of the lot, how much vegetation and trees there are, and other factors we consider based on years of experience building new custom homes in North Carolina. And we go over everything with you – just ask us for pricing.
  7. How long does it take to you to build a home?  A typical timeline to build a custom home by Travars Built Homes is about 6-9 months, once the project is underway. Get more details about our timelines to build, here.
What are the most important questions to ask a home builder?

Remember to ask each builder the same set of questions, and request pricing on the same (or very similar) floor plans so there’s no confusion about what’s offered. Want to learn more about the process to build a new custom home in North Carolina? Contact us!

Custom Home Builders

How long does it take to build a custom home?

North Carolina new home building timeline

A typical timeline to build a custom home by Travars Built Homes is about 6-9 months, once the project is underway. We divide your home build timeline into two stages – pre-construction and construction.

What are the key phases of a pre-construction timeline? 

Before we break ground on your new home, we’ll work with you through:  

  • Floor Plan Selection
  • Floor Plan Customization and Design
  • Build Permitting
  • Pre-Construction Prep

Here’s how the overall timeline for your new home build project works:

During the Plan Selection Phase, we help you find a new home floor plan that suits your lifestyle, budget, and home site. Start with some popular floor plans from a variety of architects on our site. Tell us what you’re looking for, if you want something different! The floor plan selection phase usually takes 2-4 weeks.

Custom Home Builders

During Floor Plan Customization and Design, we help modify your floor plan. What are some common changes we make? Here are the kinds of changes we can make to your plan as part of our design phase – at no extra cost to you:

  • Making a master shower larger
  • Separating sinks and vanities
  • Opening up the kitchen or adding an island
  • Adding a mother in law suite or small apartment in the home
  • Turning a front facing garage to a side load
Modern Farmhouse | Chatham County New Homes

Our in house design team works closely with you and your budget. This phase usually takes 2-6 weeks.

New Custom Home Builders

Next, we submit for Build Permits. We’ll do your site assessment in conjunction with your floor plan footprint, water hookup, and setback requirements for your lot – taking things like the slope of your lot and the length of your driveway into consideration. The permit phase usually takes 5-7 weeks.

Upon county approval, we break ground onsite by clearing and prepping for your home’s footing and foundation. Once your footers are in the ground, the typical build time is about 6-9 months.  

New Home Build Timeline

What are the key phases of the home build?

  • Excavation: Grading, clearing and site preparation
  • Foundation, damp proofing
  • Framing
  • Windows and doors
  • Roofing
  • Rough mechanics, electrical and plumbing
  • Siding, exterior paint
  • Insulation
  • Drywall, paint primer
  • Interior trim, flooring
  • Cabinets, counter tops
  • Trim outs/ fixture installs
  • Final paint
  • Final punch work and clean up
  • Move in day!

Our build process at Travars Built Homes is outlined in your personal online portal that keeps you informed about everything happening in your home. You will also have the option to meet with your builder on site at all key points during the build, to talk about what’s happening now – and what’s next. 

Want to know more about the custom home construction process? Reach out with your questions.

What is Design/Build: Working with a Custom Home Builder

Next month, a panel discussion led by Furniture, Lighting & Decor Editor-in-Chief Diane Falvey brings together four experts to talk about leveraging expertise among architects, builders, and designers when building custom homes.

During the panel, “Common Ground: Finding Synergy Among Architects, Builders and Designers,” Phil Travars and Andrew Travars of Travars Built Homes will be talking about the ins and outs of working with a design/build custom home builder in North Carolina.

“Having a clear understanding of the thought process around building a custom home can help everything go smoothly, from design through construction,” said Phil Travars, Owner and Builder at Travars Built Homes. “It’s a great opportunity to talk directly with experts from across the industry.”

About 75,000 people from across the country and internationally are expected to attend the bi-annual Furniture Mart event represented by more than 100 countries, for architects, designers, furnishings buyers and others looking for the latest information and products for homes.

The Travars brothers were asked to participate in the event to share their thought leadership about home building and designing together with CIRCLE Design Studio, LLC Principal Architect John Dorlini and Principal/Owner Theresa A.C. Dorlini.

Topics about the custom home build process are expected to include:

  • How designers and builders work together compose a custom home.
  • How creativity can create excitement through different points of view.
  • What to look out for when choosing a custom home on a budget.
  • What to think about as you integrate designs for furniture, lighting, fixtures and finishes into your new home.

“This is a great opportunity to bounce around ideas for your new home, if you’re considering a custom build,” said Andrew Travars, Builder and Designer at Travars Built Homes. “We put a lot into making each home unique – this panel will help explain what it takes to create through design/build.”

Travars Built Homes builds new custom homes in Chapel Hill, Raleigh, Durham and the surrounding region. Get information about building a custom home:

How Soon After I Sign a Purchase Agreement Will Construction Begin on my Custom Home, and How Long Will it Take?

We can start your custom home build process directly after your purchase agreement is signed, with site work scheduled as soon as building permits are in hand. Here are the first steps we take together before the shovel hits the ground:

How to build a custom home in North Carolina.
  • Modifications you want to make to your floor plan
  • Documented details about features, finishes, materials and pricing
  • Lot walk for site assessment with home’s footprint
  • Loan closed for home construction (and lot, if not already owned)
  • Review of architectural and engineered blueprints
  • HOA architectural review, if applicable
  • Improvement Permits, if applicable
  • Build Permits
  • Preliminary survey and home location plat map
How to build a custom home in North Carolina.

The typical time frame for a Travars Built Home is 6 to 9 months from when we begin the actual construction, depending on the size and type of home and the location of the build.

Contact Us with any of your questions or see what others have asked already, FAQ’s and answers.