Houston New Home Construction; What You Need to Know

09:28 Sep 2023
Houston New Home Construction Builders

There are a hundred Houston new home construction builders in the greater metropolitan area.

Home builders come in all types and sizes offering single family houses from affordable to luxury houses and everything in between.

There are big builders that produce 10,000’s of homes national a year and there are home builders that build 2 houses a year.

There are builders that buy land to develop lots for their house construction, while there are others that buy ready to build house sites from developers.

The list of Houston new home construction builders, their product options and different home elevation profiles can boggle the mind.

If you are reading this publication, it is likely that you are seeking a better understanding of the variety and offerings of Houston new home builders.

This discussion will provide some guidance to those individuals that are trying to save time, money and frustration determining the proper direction to begin.

As most searches these days begin, most buyers start with a search on the internet. This should be broad enough to define the buyers query by priorities.

Learn what you need to know about Houston new home construction before you buy

We will discuss the essential factors that define the search for Houston new home construction;

  • Geographic Area Location
  • Building Lot
  • Price Range
  • Size of the House
  • Architectural Features
  • Materials & Products
  • National Builders & Small Builders

That is to say, that the buyer will likely start with the general location in Houston that the buyer wants to live.

Houston New Home Construction Builders

Geographic Area Location

As any residential real estate sales person will tell you, location is the most important consideration to most buyers and has the greatest impact on the cost and value of new houses.

In Houston the closer you are to the metro area of the Houston Galleria Area, the higher the land price and ultimately the higher the price tag for houses.

This has to do with demand and perceived value of house buyers. Many people place great value on the convenience of living close in as well as working and entertainment minutes away from their houses.

While families with children are more likely to place a greater emphasis on the local school system and community, they want to live in.

They are content with the sacrifice of a longer drive to work for the trade-off of a lower priced house and a great place for the children to play and learn.

Houston has many fine planned housing developments throughout the outer surrounding areas.

Larger planned community developments have many different house subsections designed around a variety of house price points to meet almost any house buyer’s budget.

These community developments create a small-town appeal to many families.

The closer you get to metro Houston the smaller the supply becomes of ready to build on home sites.

It is common for buyers looking for a Houston new home construction lot close in areas to buy an older house in a state of distress for its land.

These are often called tear downs and provide new home construction buyers an option for living in their specific desired area other than buying an existing home.

These are also aging house areas that will remain in transition for years to come, as older homes are replaced with new home construction.

Building Lot Home Site

As we have mentioned the building lot inventory and availability are a product in Houston of the location.

In the suburban areas of Houston there are a far greater selection of building home sites. The chooses are rural area lots or master planned communities.

In most cases when purchasing a lot in a master planned community the streets and storm drainage as well as water and sewer are provided with the home site from the developer.

When purchase a rural lot the owner will incur a greater amount of lot development cost.

The rural land cost will be less expensive per square foot but the owner will need to provide roads, well water, septic system, storm water retention and clearing of brush & trees.

The metro area house sites will always be more expensive and will require many of the same development needs as a master planned lot would need.

As mentioned, these lots often require razing an existing structure before preparing the lot for a building pad.

Other matters that have an influencing factor on lot selections include the soil reports, deed restrictions, the amount of fill dirt requires for the finished floor elevation. These items will also impact the total home price.

Price Range

All buyers are concerned with a home’s price tag. For the buyer, the price range of the house rivals in the immediate geographic location for the most important factor associated with a buyer’ s major decision.

By identifying the targeted price range of a house, the buyer can determine the affordability of their mortgage payment.

With this information the buyer can quickly determine the lot price and construction cost that they will need to budget for a new home construction project.

This exercise of determining a price range is essential before a buyer begins to make plans for the new home building journey.

This process is called a price feasibility analysis, because it clearly defines a buyer’s financial capabilities for affording the house.

The buyer is predetermining the general budget range before the architectural house design for the purpose of qualifying such things as house size, finishes and of course the lot.

New Home Construction Houston

Materials & Products

The selection of materials and products is an essential part of a Houston new home construction project.

They effect the price, quality and usability of a house. These are such items as windows, flooring, cabinets, millwork and appliances.

Other materials and products that have an impact on price and quality are tile roofs, stone veneers, amounts of ceiling lighting and plumbing fixtures.

The price point of these items can be substantially different and impact the budget by twice the amount.

So, selecting the appropriate materials is an important step in developing the finished appearance and comforts of the house.

Size of the House

Determining the size of the house is a function of the number of bedroom and bathrooms, the required living areas needed and understanding the general lifestyle of the buyer’s family.

Once again, the owner being able to understand their own priorities is critical to determining the size of the house.

Focusing on the family’s lifestyle assist the house designer with developing a floor plan that addresses the function and aesthetic value to serve the family’s needs.

Size is also a function of the budget and house site. If a buyer wants high end finishes but the budget will not allow for them, the buyer has to make a decision. The buyer has to determine what is the most important to themselves.

They either have to reduce the size of the home or select a less expensive home lot. This process is generally referred to as value engineering.

Value engineering provides the product cost alternatives, design cost alternatives and house site options to make the best optimum cost-value decision.

Value engineering can also be used to evaluate finish products like cabinets, counter tops, appliances and floors to fit into the owner’s budget.

The house size and design style have a substantial impact on the price of a house.

The size of the house is directly proportionate to the price. The larger the house the larger the price.  

Architectural Features

The architecture form and features of the house have an impactful role on Houston new home construction.

The more irregular the envelop form and higher ceilings the greater the cost to build.

Structures that have radius walls, detailed framed ceilings and larger under roof structures create a higher price. The more windows and doors the greater the price.

The interesting thing is that two story homes is cheaper than a one-story house, everything else being the same.

This is primarily due to a wood subfloor being more cost effective than a concrete foundation.

National Home Builders or Local Small House Builders

There are more than 30,000 – 60,000 new houses built each year in the greater Houston area, depending on the market conditions.

These are built by a wide variety of home builders in Houston, TX. There are national builders like Lennar & DR Horton that build between 1,500 – 2,500 homes a year locally.

These same home builders produced 26,000 and 41,000 homes respectively in 2019 nationally.

Large national home builders have buying power and very good system management controls that provide some benefits for their clients for certain price points.

Unfortunately, these major builders can frustrate their clients because of the company’s size and lack of personal customer service they are able to provide their customers.

Smaller local builders typically have a difficult time competing on price alone with the big builders.

The smaller builders will focus on providing services that the larger builders do not offer.

These services include a better customer building experience, allowing the customer to make structural and other changes to their house plans.

A smaller home builder will commonly have the pulse of his client’s needs and wants better than a major builder.

They will know their clients by name and be much more intimate with the details of their home construction project.

The small builder will generally provide a wider range of services and chooses while the larger builder will provide more competitive pricing per square foot.

Special finance offers and other promotional offers will also influence buyer’s decisions as to the best fit for their new house building needs.

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