Custom Homes Built with Houston Custom House Builders

05:25 Sep 2023
Custom Homes Built

It surely is an amazing experience having a custom home built by a professional Houston custom house builder.

Collecting your ideas, preparing plan ideas, developing the home plans and building a custom home in Houston doesn’t get any better for experiencing an accomplishment. 

Custom built homes begin with collecting home design ideas and an inter drive to achieve such a quest. This process is not for indecisive people with a lack of resilience.

Building a uniquely designed house requires the owner to surround themselves with competent professionals that become trusted advisers during both the design and building stages.

These professionals should understand the details of designing and the construction of a custom home built and should be aligned with the owner’s interest from the offset.

As with any professional service provider like a doctor or attorney, it is important that first and foremost you can trust them and a likeminded in your business acumen.

A custom home built warrants the best professional advisers for the design and construction of your uniquely designed house without any major issues.

So, to begin the building process you will need to determine what Houston custom builders to interview for your project as your trusted adviser.

As mentioned, like many other professionals such as engineers, lawyers and doctors, there are different construction specialty types of Houston custom builders.

The key to successfully selecting the best professional category that reflects your needs is to have a fundamental understanding of what your home building requirements will be.

That starts with understanding how much house you can qualify for and where you want the custom home built.

A reality of the Houston housing market is that the closer you get to the Galleria area the higher the land prices and the higher the house prices.

This fact alone justifies why most owners choose custom homes built in the suburban areas of Houston where house prices are more cost effective. 

This article will provide you some direction of which building contractors category you should be focusing on according to your needs.

The general category for Houston builders is a large and diverse group of professional businesses that offer builder services.

The three primary Houston home builder’s categories can be classified as production builders, semi custom builders and custom builders.

Learn about this exclusive group of custom homes built by Houston house builders

We will discuss some of the general differences between these builders and what you can expect working with them

Custom Homes Built

Production Home Builders

Production builders (formally known as tract builders) can be classified as typically larger builders that regionally and locally build homes from stock plans that they have developed to represent their product lines.

This by far is the largest house building contractors segment in the industry. The prices for these types of Houston home builders can range from $200k″s to $300k’s in Houston Texas.

Production builders will generally offer their products on larger pieces of land called community developments or PUD’s and will be located 20 to 40 minutes outside the Houston metro area, where land prices are more cost effective then the metro area.

Their services are typically narrowly defined to a group of pre-determined product selections to choose from and restricted to the neighborhood locations that the builder constructs his product.

The higher the house prices, the more product selections that will be offered to buyers.

Generally speaking, builders do not like to make structural changes or modifications to the exterior elevation of the houses.

If these types of changes are important to your housing requirements then you will want to talk with a semi custom builder.

Semi-Custom Homes Builders

The second largest group of home builders can be referred to as the semi-custom home builders. This group can broadly be described in two different business models.

The first semi-custom business model will typically build a product from various pre designed plans, but will offer a larger range of product selections.

They will operate much like a production builder by constructing spec homes at preset prices, but will have unique architectural features that warrant high end prices.

This second type of semi-custom home builders will commonly operate with a group of predesigned house plans, but will allow customers to make changes to the plan under contract.

They will typically restrict the types of changes such as structural modifications or exterior elevation changes, but will allow interior walls to be moved to accommodate the client.

The price range for semi-custom builders is from $300’s to $1M depending the size of the house and on the cost of the land.

In metro Houston the price of the building site can reflect upwards of 50% of the sales price, which is one of the reasons that it is uncommon to that these types of custom homes are built.

Houston Custom Builders

Houston custom builders’ classifications are the smallest of the Houston house builder’s groups, but are likely to vary the greatest amount in business model actives and size.

Houston custom builders’ prices can range in service and product offerings from $800’s to $5M+ for custom homes built.

Their business practices vary dramatically in their processes and their organizational size due primarily to their business size.

We will discuss some of the common custom home builder business offering practices, but will find that this groups common practices fluidly shift to accommodate their changing local clients’ demographics needs.

The common factor that defines this classification of home builders is the unique nature of their one of a kind home products.

Although there are house building contractors that have predesigned house plans that they will modify to the buyer’s personal taste, this building contractor category is commonly associated with unique designed homes that reflect the owner’s lifestyle and personal needs.

So, let’s look at the common practices of a house building contractors product offering practices.

Spec Custom Builders – This traditional business practice is when house building contractors buys a specific building site for the purpose of designing and building a house for future sale.

After some research and serious head scratching the house contractor will commission a design team to prepare a unique luxury house plan that fits the neighborhood and will appeal to a targeted buyer.

They will often enlist the services of a real estate broker to prepare a pre-completion marketing plan to offer the property during house construction.

This business practice is less common in the last 20 years since the 2008 financial crisis because banks feel it to risky to underwrite.

Bid to Build Builders – The most common traditional business practice of Houston custom builders, is to work with a small group of specific architects that will invite the builders to meet with clients to bid home plans newly designed.

The owner is still required to vet the house building contractor but will be greatly influenced by the recommendations of their architect.

Depending on the designer / builder relationship and the complete scope of design documents that are prepared by the design team, these relationships can test the owner’s patience and budget expectations.

If the documents are incomplete or have gaps due to the design team’s specifications, the bids and allowance schedules can have large spreads in different total dollar amounts.

This makes it challenging for the owner to compare apples to apples. It also makes it difficult for the owner to build a trusting relationship with the house building contractor.

This is a critical point in developing an effective and constructive working partnership.

Custom Homes Built in Houston

On Your Lot Builders – Many house building contractors will buy a house site to sell either or both the lot and a house to a willing buyer.

Due to the lack of available inventory of available building sites, house contractors will speculate on the perceived market value of a particular future building site.

This is similar to the business practice of the spec custom builders, but differs in that the building contractor that buys the future building site may not build anything on the site and sell the lot outright at a premium price.

He can either sell the home site outright or sell to an owner where he builds the house in the future.

On your lot builders are frequently found in the higher end metro neighborhoods and in estate communities where the building contractors have purchased take down lots from the developer.

The expected price range to purchase a lot in Houston for a custom home built is $1M +

Design to Build Custom Builders – These custom home built business practice is to facilitate both design and house construction.

This practice is relatively new in luxury house construction and has some distinct advantages over the previous methods discussed.

These advantages include the design build contractors being responsible for both the design and construction of the home.

This reduces the financial exposure for the owner of the financial responsibility with plan design errors or incomplete construction documents.

This process also reduces time associated with redesigning home plans due to the budget overruns.

The design build builder provides budget updates throughout the design process.

Most importantly, it allows the building contractor and owner time to develop a functional working relationship.


Those choosing to have a custom homes built need to clearly understand the different types of custom house builders to be able to determine the best professional to work with.

Comments are closed.