It's an expensive project, but designing and building your own custom home is a dream for many around the world. It's a pleasant contrast to the idea of making do with a property that ticks some of your boxes but not others, and which was likely constructed with the intent of replicating that same building many hundreds of times. However, as attractive as the prospect is, it's no mean feat to oversee such a big project. In order to stay on track and make the best of your construction, here are some things to keep in mind.
Prioritise and Balance Your Ideas
This may be a home built especially for you and your family, but it's not a blank cheque. The larger you build your home, the likelier it is that you'll run into problems, and there's always a chance that unforeseen problems will force you to run over budget. Equally, you'll need to commit to maintaining everything you include. As such, it's wise to make a list of features you'd like to include, and prioritise these. Which is more important — the library, or the guest rooms? Do you really need a four-car garage? This is your dream house, so you do deserve to tick some of those more outrageous items off the list. Just make it a manageable number and save yourself the stress in the long run.
Find Cost-Effective Substitutes
Building everything from scratch means that you're going to be footing a huge bill for basic construction — never mind decor and furnishings on top of that. If you find that the budget is starting to get a little out of hand, look at your plans and see if any of the planned materials can be replaced by cheaper alternatives. For example, polished concrete is a great substitute for marble, and light woods can be indistinguishable from real mahogany with careful staining. If you can find solutions like these, the savings will really add up, so feel free to ask the contractors you're working with for ideas.
Be Prepared to Wait
Every part of this process is lengthy, with good reason. You'll need planning permissions and detailed construction plans for starters — and then you can expect to wait several months for high-quality construction contractors to have space in their books. Just remember that this long waiting period is a good thing; if a contractor is consistently booked up far in advance, then you know they do excellent work worth being patient for.
Of course, your contractors will help and advise you through the process, and you should primarily rely on their advice, but it's good to do in armed with a little knowledge about what you want to do, how long it will take, and how best to make decisions once you get there. Good luck!