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Building and then Interior Design much later?

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Jun 18, 2013, 09:56 AM
Building and then Interior Design much later?
My fiancee and I are in the beginning phases of home building, we are unsure as to how much we really need to begin.

We have picked out our design, saved what we believe is enough to get started, settled on a contractor and we want to borrow only the amount needed to make the home livable, and pay for the extra interior "looks" as we have the money.

We are meeting with our GC, who we know did work on my brother-in-laws house and he does great work.

Basically we want to be able to move in as soon as possible and do the "finishes" as we have the money available.

Is is feasible to have the major work done (all exterior, flooring,plumbing, electrical) and most of the first floor completed (kitchen, master bed and bath) and add the other stuff later (specific light fixtures, crown molding, painting, etc) in rooms we know we aren't going to be using any time soon. Like the library and dining room, the upstairs kids room etc?

We're in no hurry to get pregnant (at least I'm not) and I'd rather pay off the money borrowed for the construction cost before moving on to pay for little things that are more wants, like installing shelving in the library.

Has anyone done this?
Jun 18, 2013, 05:05 PM
Greetings from a fellow Michigander!

I can only offer one concern which is that you'll have to have the house finished to the extent that you can get a certificate of occupancy (which you may already have known).

I would think also that any construction loan would have a contingency fund, so that would be a bit beyond what you feel is necessary just to make the home liveable (which could vary depending on what the determination of "liveable"). Same issue as to "finishes".

There are many knowledgeable folks here who I'm sure can give more specific answers than I.
Jun 18, 2013, 05:12 PM
You must have all the basics and get a Certificate of Occupancy to satisfy any construction loans. Only then can the construction loan be rolled over into a permanent mortgage.

That means that you can leave out a lot of 'special' things like built-in shelving but the house must be complete. The best way to do this (meaning most affordable) is to do as much as possible in a 'basic' build plan: Paint all one interior color. Put in carpet in rooms that will eventually get hardwood. Add a simple trim that will be changed out later. Leave out things like crown moldings or other fancy trim.

Sure, you will be spending a little more because you will be undoing some areas and basically remodeling but you must have a 100% complete house if you are financing any of it.