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Budgeting to buy a home may involve lots of careful planning—cutting out the extra frills from your budget and putting each and every extra dollar aside to build up your down payment. When it comes to planning to build a custom home in South Carolina, however, the costs are going to be distinctly different than if you’re buying prebuilt new construction or an older home. How much does it cost to build a custom home in South Carolina? Today, we’ll break some of those costs down to give you a better idea.

Price Per Square Foot is a Good Place to Start

Many contractors think about the cost of building a home in price per square foot. The average custom-built home will cost anywhere from $80 to $200 per square foot, depending on your choices when it comes to flooring, countertops, and other customizations. Don’t simply set yourself a goal of $80 per square foot and assume everything will come together at that price, especially if you prefer high-end finishes and on-trend design details.

What to Consider When Planning Your Home Building Budget

First off, look at the property you’re interested in. Does it already have a structure on it that will need demolished and removed? Is there a steep incline at one end of the property, lots of trees that will need to be removed, large rocks, or standing water? All of these will complicate the preparation process and therefore cause your overall construction costs to rise. It’s important, when you see a parcel of land for sale at a tempting price, to check it out and find out what little details may be causing it to sell for so cheap.

Next, think about your chosen style. Do you like the look of traditional German architecture? Are you planning to build your ideal custom Craftsman-style home? Do you like the Arts and Crafts bungalow style so popular in downtown Greenville? Or are you more of a Neoclassical or Colonial type? Each of these home styles involves different details and features, which can raise or lower the overall cost of building. Higher-quality materials may be needed for one style as opposed to another. If your heart’s set on that perfect Craftsman floor plan, for instance, be sure to speak to Design Center representative to learn what sort of costs could be involved.

Are you adding extra onto the original plan? If you’re dreaming about extra corners or gables to make your home’s exterior truly unique to you, these come with added costs as well.

Rising costs start with your foundation. Are you interested in a full finished basement, unfinished basement, a crawlspace, or a slab foundation for your home? Each of these will involve different kinds of work and therefore different costs, with a full finished basement likely costing the most — and also adding the most value to your home after its completion.

Siding or brick? What kinds of shingles? Exterior details can switch up ending costs. A home with a plain, basic siding exterior and easy-to-find shingles will usually cost less than a home with carefully laid bricks or specialty roofing. Any change from your initial floor plan is likely to add onto your final cost per square foot.

Have you been dreaming about customized front doors, a huge picture window, or are you adding windows where none existed in the floor plan? Some homeowners want that window-over-the-kitchen-sink added in if it’s not already included in the floor plan. Cutting a window out of the wall and installing a new window will add costs. Customized window sizes require custom-ordered glass. Our Design Center representatives can help you to know what sort of added costs you’ll be looking at.

What’s inside the walls? One of the most significant aspects of your cost per square foot is going to be your internal home systems — what sort of plumbing or HVAC setup you choose can significantly raise or lower your projected costs. It usually winds up being around 17% of your overall cost, and we recommend spending a little more on high-quality internal home systems, since you’ll actually save in the long term due to higher efficiency.

What’s your vision for the interior? High-end appliances, cabinets, and countertops — or that special island in the kitchen you asked to have added in later on — all of this raises your overall cost. These sorts of things usually end up being less than 10% of your final home budget, but even 10% can end up being a lot of money, depending on your design. Be sure to research and price out your favorites before construction ever begins, so you can plan for that stainless-steel kitchen or vintage claw-foot soaking tub in the master bath.

Hardwood or carpet? Tile or stone? Your flooring options can range from inexpensive to a costly luxury, depending on what you have in mind. Many clients these days are searching for high-quality hardwood flooring, which can be located for fairly inexpensive costs. On the other hand, granite or marble floors are a luxury you’ll definitely want to budget for in advance. Tile or vinyl in the kitchen or bathrooms can look luxe without a lot of expense, while stone flooring is going to be a bit more labor-intensive — and therefore a little costlier.

Are you dreaming of an outdoor “man cave?” Need a workshop for your DIY projects? Adding a wraparound porch, extra balcony, or a finished attic? Be sure to bring these up in your initial design meetings. While these aren’t generally “living” spaces, they do get added to your overall budget and can easily rise your costs by tens of thousands of dollars.

Finally, what kind of closing costs are you looking at? While everyone knows there are closing costs involved in buying an existing home, some are surprised to find them included in buying newly-built custom home construction. With new home construction, buyers will absorb costs that vary depending on the lender, rather than splitting them with the seller, as is common in pre-existing construction.

Looking to Build a Custom Home in Greenville, SC?

Five Star Construction has deep roots in the community of Simpsonville, South Carolina, and the surrounding areas. We build all throughout the Upstate and work with everything from fully-finished floor plans to a hasty set of ideas scribbled on a napkin. Our Design Center will help to ensure that your floor plans match your unique dreams for your new home, and our process keeps you included every single step of the way. Five Star Construction is here for you from day one all the way through move-in day — and beyond. Reach us by phone at (864) 303-9143 or contact us online at any time to get started today!

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