Custom Home Construction and Remodelling Tips
Delays are the last thing you want when you’re building the custom home of your dreams. They can derail a project, leaving everyone frustrated and exhausted. The good news is that most delays can be avoided with the right combination of thinking ahead and working with the right team. But, on the flip side, some delays are out of everyone’s hands. We’ve broken down the most common custom home delays so you can learn which ones are avoidable (and how) and which ones aren’t.
Regulation delays - Issues with Minor Variances may arise if you need to get an exception to your bylaws to continue your project, so make sure you know your bylaws like the back of your hand! Also, permits will have to be applied for and purchased depending on the scope of work. Remember also to factor in turnaround times from the municipal offices - getting your permit applications approved and back to you can take weeks or even months. In fact, the minimum turnaround time is ten days, and that’s if you have submitted every form perfectly (which doesn’t always happen on the first pass).
Lack of collaboration - If the key stakeholders aren’t all on the same page about the function and form of the house, it can mean last minute changes which can cause delays. Sit down with anyone who is financially (or emotionally) involved and make sure you all have the same vision and goals for the new build, as changes to the plan will always add both delays and cost.
Financial delays - If the budget hasn’t been properly set, you can run into delays while money is found or sourced for unexpected expenses. Take everything into account when creating your budget to create a realistic one, and always include an emergency buffer!
Crew issues - Any crew working with an inefficient manager can cause delays, as they won’t be able to be as ‘on it’ as they need to be. When searching for your perfect crew, always ask whether your construction partner has a designated Site Supervisor for every build. Any company worth their salt will, and it means that no matter how busy the crew is, there will always be someone giving your build the personal attention it deserves.
Delayed decision making - Key items must be sourced and ordered in the correct order to make sure there is enough time for fabrication, turnaround, and shipping. Take cabinets, for example. They must be designed before the electrical and plumbing rough-ins, or the project will be delayed while the trade contractors wait to find out where to locate the plumbing and electrical work in the kitchen. Work closely with your design-build team, who should know these timelines well, and heed their advice when it comes to ordering deadlines.
Weather delays -These fall into the grandiose-sounding ‘Acts of God’ category. Anything like rain, blizzards, or flooding can make it impossible to continue the build. There’s not a lot you can do to avoid these, except for working with a team that is familiar with the local weather and prepares accordingly.
Delayed arrival of key trade contractor - Your site supervisor should endeavour to keep the trades in the loop and confirmed at all times. But, like any job where you’re working with licensed trade contractors, you can’t control their schedules 100% and if a delay happens on their end, they won’t be physically able to get to your site on time.
Unexpected issues while excavating - There’s no way of knowing what you’ll discover once you begin excavating your site to build your foundation. While we’re all hoping for precious buried treasure to make you a millionaire, the more likely scenario is that your crew might discover rock or another unstable surface which will need to be dealt with before the foundation goes in, causing delays.