Mebane NC New Homes | White Farmhouse Exterior

How much does an NC custom home cost per square foot?

Cost per square foot is a term that became popular with production builders, since the homes they build are designed to be cookie cutter boxes and can be built very cheaply with very few choices and nearly everything outside baseline “basics” an “upgrade.” It’s pretty easy to build the same box over and over again and keep it in a similar “price per square foot” when very little can be changed.

Would you ask for the price per square foot for a car? That’s how little it can apply to a truly custom home, as a comparison tool, without knowing just what each of those square feet contain. Here’s how to take a test drive:

NC custom home cost per square foot

NC custom home cost per square foot: Home style

The type of home you choose can make a big difference. A one story home has more foundation and roof, so it typically costs more per square foot than a two story home.

Architectural styles can impact your cost considerably. For example, Contemporary homes can be more expensive to build than Colonial homes.

Chatham County NC Custom Homes | Homebuilders Chatham County

NC custom home cost per square foot: Floor plan layout

An “average cost per square foot” may also not the best indicator of value because even plans with similar layouts can have differences that impact the build cost. For example:

The Chandler Floor Plan | Siler City New Homes
  • How big are the kitchens – how much cabinetry and countertops? What kind of appliances and lighting?
  • How many bathrooms? How extensive is the tile work?
  • How big is the garage?
  • How many and how big are the windows and doors? A wall of windows or sun room can make a big difference.
  • How much square footage is on the main floor, versus upstairs?
  • How high/complex is the roof line?
  • Does the home have a lot of cut outs or is it designed more cost effectively?
  • How much outdoor living space is included in the footprint? How big are the porches and screen porches? Is there an outdoor kitchen or see-through fireplace?

NC custom home cost per square foot: Building materials and selections

Here’s what else you need to know, as you compare costs:

Look closely at what the builder includes in writing. Are floors “resilient material” or hardwood? What kind of hardwood is it? How many rooms start with carpet? Is there a microwave? Is the owner’s suite shower tile, or plastic? Does it have a fireplace? What kind of lights and faucets are included? Does the home come with a radiant barrier or sealed crawl space (that can save you a lot over the years and make your home more efficient and comfortable). Different materials, features and finishes can make a huge difference in the price for your home – and everything you want to change will add to the price you pay (either now or later.)

Look for what the builder has in writing as to what comes “standard.” What builders offer can differ extensively as to what is “basic”. We can help you find a cost-effective floor plan. And we will help you compare advantages.

NC custom home cost per square foot

NC custom home cost per square foot: Location and building lot site work

The site work required for your lot can also make a big difference. Ask the builder what it costs to build a home on your lot. Find out if they require you to sign up with them before they will do an assessment of site costs.

  • Is a sewer available or do you need a septic system? Is it conventional or engineered?
  • Do you have over 2 or 3 acres? If so, a well may be required.
  • How long is the driveway? What will it be made with?
  • What is the topography? Do you need a tall crawl or basement?
  • What are the setbacks?
  • Is it in a neighborhood with an HOA? What are the community covenants?
NC custom home cost per square foot

Travars Built Homes builds homes from cottages to estates, with a cost per square foot that is appropriate for custom homes that come in all kinds of shapes, sizes, and architectural styles.

Our quotes come with about 10 pages of details, so you know exactly what’s included in your build cost – and what that means in terms of quality materials, craftsmanship, air quality, energy efficiency and everything else that can make a big difference not just in cost per square foot – but in the comfort and strength of your new home.

Cost per square foot for a custom home depends on the floor plan, selections chosen, and location. Get started, here, with pricing information from Travars Built Homes.

Want to know the cost per square foot? We’ll give you that, too.

5 easy steps to get an NC custom home price quote

Building a custom home is very different from purchasing a new or existing home. You often won’t find set pricing online because custom home builders need to know a few details to provide a quote you can count on.

Here are the 5 easy steps we walk through with you, so you can get a personalized custom home quote with 10 pages of details.

Step 1: Call Travars Built Homes at 919-740-7536. We can cover a lot about what you’d like to do in a ten minute conversation. And check here for quick answers to common custom home building questions.

NC Custom Home Photo Tours

Step 2: Email. Send the names of floor plans you’re interested in knowing more about. Need ideas? Request house plans, here.

If you own a lot, send the address, plot plan, soil determinations, improvement permits, community covenants and anything else that can help us provide you with the most precise information possible.

Step 3: Come to your 30 minute no obligation custom home consultation. We’ll go over the details in your 10 page custom home pricing quote. Take it home. Make notes on the things you’d like to consider changing, such as floor plan modifications. Email your questions so we can provide even more information.

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Step 4: Meet with Travars Built Homes at your lot for your free onsite lot assessment, where you’ll learn what it takes to build at your homesite. Find out about everything about your location that impacts build costs – before you sign your purchase agreement. Still looking for the right lot? We can help with your search, too.

Step 5: Read more about what makes Travars Built Homes unique, and meet one more time to go over the details in your final quote for the floor plan you want to build. We can cover any modifications discussed at your initial custom home consultation, and site work specific to your homesite. Your build costs are locked in with your purchase agreement!

Wendell North Carolina New Homes

Interested in a custom home quote? Contact Travars Built Homes. We will show you everything that comes included – and the flexibility you have for personalization – when you build your new home on your lot or neighborhood in central NC.

Get started:

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Build On Your Lot: Frequently Asked Questions

How to Build a House on Your Lot in North Carolina

Own land? Still searching? These questions help answer what to look for when you choose your lot, purchase your land with a licensed real estate agent, decide where to place your home, and select a custom home builder to construct your North Carolina new home.

Knowing what to ask can help ensure you know what it takes to build your new home. Here are some of the most important questions about land, lots, parcels, and homesites that enable you to be informed and prepared.

Contact Travars Built Homes to learn more about how to build a new custom home on your land.

What’s the best size lot for a new custom home build?

The best size lot for a new custom home build is determined by your floor plan, community covenants if applicable, local build requirements, what kind of septic/sewer system is required, whether you need a well, and other mandates. We will go over all of that with you, when we know what and where you’d like to build.

Here are more questions to ask about lot sizes:

  1. How can I find out how big my lot has to be, for a specific floor plan?
  2. Why do I need a bigger lot to have a side load garage?
  3. I own several acres – can I put my home wherever I want on my land?

Will the builder look at the lot I am considering purchasing prior to me buying it, and give me his perspective about what it will cost to build there?

When you build with Travars Built Homes, an on site assessment is part of our standard process. We will talk about the fit of your floor plan to your lot, your driveway, and other site specific build imperatives.

Here are some common questions we can answer, after we take a look at your lot together:

  1. How much does it cost to clear trees and shrubs off my lot?
  2. What is the difference between a soil scientist and the county doing a soil evaluation?
  3. What is an improvement permit and why do you need to get that for me that before the build permit?
  4. If a septic permit only allows 3 bedrooms, is it possible to have 4 bedrooms?
  5. How many bathrooms can I have in my home?

What kind of slope does my lot need to have for a walk-out basement?

Most basement homes in NC are walk-out, set into a slope of about 6 feet over the course of the home. We can add a basement to nearly any floor plan, but the the look of the home can change depending on the direction of the slope. Before selecting a home with a basement in the floor plan, talk with your builder about placement of your home.

Here are more common questions we’ll help answer related to site conditions:

  1. What is the difference between a sewer and a septic system, and how does that impact costs?
  2. What is the difference in maintenance and build cost for a conventional septic system versus an engineered system?
  3. What is the build cost for a well? How deep it will be?
  4. What is a community septic system, and how does that work? What is a grinder pump and how much does that cost?

Will the lender combine the lot purchase and home build cost into one loan, or do I need to buy my land and home separately?

Your lot purchase and the construction of your home are typically bundled into one transaction with a construction to perm loan, so you do not need to buy the lot before you build. Read more about NC new home financing and construction loans here.

Where can I learn more about how to buy land in North Carolina?

Work directly with a real estate agent with expertise and experience in lot and land purchasing. Kelly McNabb, NC REALTOR® at Costello Real Estate and Investments, can help get you started.

Kelly McNabb
REALTOR®/Broker (919) 391-0315 Costello Real Estate & Investments
kellym@costellorei.com kellymcnabb.costellorei.com

Here are the kinds of questions Kelly can help answer for you, in tandem with Travars Built Homes:

  1. Has the perc test been done on this lot? Is it possible to build a home on land that does not perc? How does that work?
  2. What does it mean when a listing says “water nearby”? How can I find out what it will cost to hook up to that city/county water source?
  3. What can I do if the lot I want to purchase is land locked?
  4. What do I need to know about flood plains?
  5. If I want to have a future pool, what does the builder and the county need to know about that?
  6. What is an impervious surface and how does that impact my build?
  7. What do I need to know about setbacks and easements?
  8. What is the difference between a lot survey and a plot plan and who handles that?

19 Questions to Ask NC home builders – before you buy

What questions should I ask builders about building a new home in the Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill region of North Carolina?

“Price per square foot” is NOT the most important thing to know.

Use this checklist of new home construction cost questions – and learn why to avoid asking “what’s your cost per square foot”? Contact Travars Built Homes for answers to these questions.

Questions to ask NC home builders: (Not) cost per square foot

  1. Why does price per square foot come out much higher for some homes than others, even though the size and layout look very similar?
  2. What comes included in this home, as a starting, “basic” build?
  3. Can you give me a detailed package that has everything in writing, so I can see just what’s already in there and what I need to add?
  4. How long will it take to build my new home?

Questions to ask NC home builders: Location and site work

  1. Where can you build my new home in NC?
  2. Is site work included in your price? Do you give that to me prior to contract?
  3. What does it cost to build this home on my lot, as opposed to on a lot in your community?
Questions to ask NC home builders

Questions to ask NC home builders: Floor plan layout and style

  1. How do I find a cost-effective floor plan?
  2. Why does a home with a large kitchen cost more to build than a home with a large great room?
  3. Why does an owners suite on the main floor cost more than an owners suite upstairs?
  4. Why does it cost more to have a sprawling footprint than one that has more square feet upstairs?
  5. Why does a home shaped like a “box” cost less to build than a home with “cutouts?”
  6. How much less does it cost to build a bonus room over a great room than to add a keeping room on the main floor?
  7. Why do contemporary home architectural styles cost more to build than traditional architectural styles?
Questions To Ask NC Home Builders
Questions To Ask NC Home Builders

Questions to ask NC home builders: Selections and features

  1. How much does a typical homebuyer pay in addition to the “base” price for your homes once they start including things like microwaves and other features that are in typical custom homes?
  2. How many choices do I have for selections in your “base” pricing?
  3. What kind of energy efficiency (features and processes) does this home have?
  4. How much do windows and doors matter when adding up costs?
  5. Does it cost more to have a carriage than a third bay in the garage?
  6. Is a sealed crawl space included?
  7. Are there built-ins? Trey ceilings? Trim around windows and doors? Crown moulding?
Questions To Ask NC Home Builders

Learn more about building a new home in North Carolina in our FAQs. Contact Travars Built Homes to start asking questions!

Raleigh Custom Homes | Two Story Foyer

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 North Carolina new home?

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

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Questions to Ask a Home Builder: 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.

Questions to Ask a Home Builder: 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.  

Chatham County NC Custom Homes | Second Story Overlook Railing

Questions to Ask a Home Builder: 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.  

Questions to Ask a Home Builder: 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.

Questions to Ask a Home Builder | NC New Homes

Questions to Ask a Home Builder: 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. 

Questions to Ask a Home Builder: 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.

Questions to Ask a Home Builder: 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.

White Modern Farmhouse Bathrooms | Mebane NC New Homes

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!