Custom Home Plans by Tim Barber House & Home | Tim Barber House & Home can custom design and plan your home anywhere across the country. contact for more info.

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Tools
Selecting Your House
THE LOT

Now it’s time to get out there and do your land research! You have to consider the way your custom home design will sit on the lot, as that impacts everything from natural light and cool breezes to your proximity to the street and neighbors. Every lot is different, so there are a number of factors to evaluate when choosing the one that’s right for you and your new house:

• Location, Location, Location – Finding the right lot in the right neighborhood for your custom home plans is essential. There are logistics to consider like: Are there shops within walking distance? How long will your commute take? How good are the nearby schools? There are environmental factors to ask about, as well. Is the house in a flood zone? How do the wind and the sun affect the lot? And don't forget about quality of life factors like noise, safety and neighbors.

• Size, Shape and Slope of the Land – Are you considering a regularly or irregularly shaped lot? Will there be enough yard space left once you build the house? Is it a flat lot or hillside?

• Zoning Requirements and Building Restrictions – Before building your new home design, know what the required setbacks are from the road and your neighbors, or height and square footage limitations. Some city and county websites offer access to the zoning classifications and requirements of any property in the area. The Realtor listing the property might know much of this information, but always double-check with the city or county before laying any money down.

• Lot Orientation – On your particular lot, which direction will the house face? Will the sun and wind reach the house to provide proper warmth, shade and light? Or, equally important to some, is there a lovely view from the bedroom window? 

• Historic Districts and Homeowner Associations – Sometimes there are neighborhood restrictions placed on properties in a district of historic significance or areas under the jurisdiction of guidelines placed by homeowner associations. You'll need to determine whether these exist in your neighborhood and what the rules allow.

• Soil Type – If you don’t want your new house to sink after a year, you may need a soils test and report. Don't worry – there are people for that. They will come out to the lot and take samples of the soil from various parts of the property. Then, back at the lab, they can run tests to determine whether the soil is firm enough to support a house, garage or other structure.

• Trees on the Lot – This is another vital consideration. A mature tree can be a huge asset on your lot, as a new tree requires many years to grow tall to provide shade and water control. Also, in certain counties, some species of trees are protected and cannot be removed. A poorly placed tree can ruin your plans for the lot, so learn about your local protected trees on your city or county website.

SIZING UP YOUR HOUSE

There is much talk nowadays of how much space we really need to live comfortably and well.  We are in an age where we can no longer turn a blind eye to issues like saving energy, conserving natural resources, reducing air, noise and light pollution and a host of other important considerations.  We want to live comfortably. The size house we need to achieve that level of comfort is something to be evaluated. Consider how large your home would be if you had room for everything. Then, ask yourself, "what is the smallest house I need to get everything I want in a house?"

If your house is designed smartly, you can get so much more for so much less. Less square footage, we mean, which, in turn, means less material to build, less space to heat and cool, less to clean and maintain, and, most importantly, less cost! We have designed every TBH&H house to maximize functionality, minimize wasteful space, include smart storage and plan for adaptability.  To determine just how much space you will really need in a house, ask yourself the questions in our Size & Layout Questionnaire below.  Be sure to include anyone who will live there with you in the conversation as well.  The answers will inform the way you look at our house plans.  

Download Questionnaire