Real Estate: Have you ever built a house that in the end you hated?

Building houses is hard, very hard. There are so many details to them and it's very hard to appreciate what they will look like at the end. Many of us will not have had time or opportunity to figure out what we like so we figure it out as we go. Most seem to do just fine, but every once in a while, enough mistakes are made that it's really pretty terrible.

So, let's see your stories here. How did you cope with the failure? What led to them and what do you wish you'd done differently? Would you do it all over again?

It doesn't necessarily have to be a full custom home. Any home where you got to make some decisions about how it will look will do.

Design is never complete. Or as I learned at architecture school, "there is no such thing as a perfect design". So take heart; no matter what design you start with, there will always be something that you won't like at the end, or at least think that you could have done it differently or better. 

There are several scenarios that can cause you to "hate" your own house. These will differ based on your specific situation, however here are some of the common ones:

  • While helping clients buy land and construct custom homes, the most common mistake I have noticed is borrowing design ideas from other non-comparable homes. Seeing something that looks good in another house will not necessarily look nice in the one you are constructing.
  • Working with a professional is a good place to start. Smaller DIY projects may work but larger or ground up constructions are complex and are not DIY projects.
  • Design visualization can be a challenge. If you are not imaginative, consider getting a physical model or utilize Building Information Modeling. With advances in computing technology, BIM is relatively inexpensive nowadays. Seeing an unpleasant design aspect in an electronic walk-through is much more financially economical than seeing it actually constructed and then trying to change it.
  • Stick to the plan. If you do wish to change your original design mid way during construction, then the best way to do that is to go back to the drawing board. Once the design part is addressed, ask for an in-depth analysis on what the actual cost and challenges will be. Only then change the plan.

Regardless or how good or bad your first time was, it only gets better thereafter as you have your own expertise and familiarity with the process to rely upon. Good luck.

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