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You’ve finally come to the moment when you’ll build the home of your dreams. You have a general idea of how many rooms you’d like, the structure’s overall layout and what materials you like. However, there are some features you shouldn’t overlook that might make your life better and easier.
The median price of a home in the United States varies based on where you live. In a study of home prices across 50 states through Zillow and Business Insider, researchers found the median home price is about $247,084. The least expensive place to buy a home was West Virginia, with an average cost of $108,236, and the most costly was Hawaii at $636,451.
Since you’ll invest a big chunk of money in a new home, there are some things you’ll want to consider adding.
1. Storage Space
What seems like a big home when you first build it will fill up quickly. Think about where you can add storage space you might need in the future. Should you crate attic access over your attached garage?
Put in more kitchen cabinets than you think you’ll need. A walk-in closet and pantry add a lot of function to your home and doesn’t cost much more to add during the building process.
2. Energy Efficient Windows
Investing a little more in windows now can save you money in the long run. The U.S. Department of Energy states you’ll save between $101 and $583 per year by replacing single-pane windows with more efficient ones.
While choosing the windows for your home, also pay attention to features that make them easier to clean, such as ones tilting in or crank out windows.
3. Temperature Controlled Attached Garage
Insulate your garage and install a unit big enough to handle heating and cooling needs. When you have a heated and cooled garage, you’ll gain precious days you can work in there without falling victim to extreme temperatures.
You’ll also have a nice play area for your children on rain or snowy days. If you ever need more living space, it is much easier to convert an area already receiving service from the HVAC unit in your home.
4. Deep Pour Basement
Because you’re building your home, you get to decide on details, such as how high your basement ceilings are. With a deeper basement, you extend your usable living space. Even if you don’t finish the basement right away, once you’re ready to, you’ll have normal-height ceilings and will just need some additional finish work.
You should also install Egress windows to match building codes in most of the country. If you add a bedroom on the lower level or even an apartment you plan to rent out, an Egress is required.
5. Large Laundry Room
Whether you combine your mudroom with your laundry facilities or not, a large laundry room is vital. Sure, you can place your washer and dryer in a large closet, but you’ll lack cabinets for storage and space to sort and fold clothes. A laundry room gives you ample space for the entire family and grows with you.
6. Bonus Attic Space
Most homes have a ton of unused attic space. It’s much easier to add a regular staircase and finish off the attic into a bonus room during the initial building of a new home. A bonus room serves any number of purposes for a growing family.
Some ways you could use extra space is adding a small kitchen, bath and exterior door and creating a rentable unit. You could also use the space as a home office, a child’s playroom, a guest area or a master suite.
Think about how long you plan to be in your home. It may or may not be worth investing in high-end finishes. If you think you’ll be there 15 or 20 years, go ahead and spend a bit more on granite countertops and marble in the bathrooms. If you plan to sell in a few years, go with less expensive options that are durable enough to look new when you list your home.