Choose one of our carefully designed stock plans or bring your own. You bring the lot or build on one of our lots.
Built By Adams has more than 20 home plans that can be adapted to your lot with the flexibility to add additional space, porches, patios, and more. Home plans range in size from 1,200 square feet to over 6,000 square feet and if you choose a stock plan often times you will save a lot of money in design costs and will be several steps ahead of other Built By Adams clients who choose the custom design path.
While Built By Adams no longer builds completely “custom homes” you can still get a brand new home that feels very much like a custom home without all of the added costs, added time, and stress. The big difference between fully “Custom” vs “Semi-Custom” is in the streamlined approach we take at Built By Adams. And if you don’t want to bother will all of this, choose from one of our semi-custom homes for sale on one of our lots.
The Difference Between Custom vs Semi-Custom
We have built fully custom homes for over 40 years and there is a big difference between the two home building processes. Custom home projects involve the client, home-builder, and possibly an architect working very closely throughout the project to design, plan, and select every single detail about the home’s construction, layout, and all of the finish details. These types of homes are rarely done as a Fixed Contract to Build and more likely entered into as a Cost PLUS arrangement which can get very expensive for the client.
EVERY SINGLE DETAIL in a custom home project is worked through, selected, possibly changed a few times, followed up on, and finally incorporated into the home. This adds a lot of extra time, stress (for the client, builder, subcontractors, and so on), and ultimately a lot more money to build. As an example, a home building client may have some ideas about incorporating something a new or unique feature they saw on HGTV.
Unfortunately, what HGTV doesn’t show is the process of building or sourcing that feature. Ultimately, it becomes the builder’s responsibility to figure out of the details that go along with incorporating that feature into the home.
"We have eliminated a lot of the time, cost, and tedious decisions that need to be made when building a custom home and simplified the process the best we can with our semi-custom process. Building a home can be a very stressful process for the client and honestly, the less you are involved the smoother the process is from start to finish and the better you will feel at the move-in date. There are literally thousands of decisions, components, and steps that go into building a great home at a fair price that would drive most people crazy wading through all of that information. Pick out your doors, windows, kitchen and tops, your flooring, your siding/roofing colors, your paint colors, and maybe a couple of upgrades, and prepare for move in day to a beautiful new home that is built to a higher standard than most of your premier luxury/high-end builders.
You may end up spending a couple of hours upfront with our team picking out the majority of the home in our showroom, 1-2 hours visiting our kitchen designer, 1 hour at the flooring store, and maybe one more trip to figure out lights and faucets and you are done! And you don't even need to do all of that if you don't have time. That is our goal. That is what we can do for our clients if they trust the process and let us do what we do." - Ryan Adams, VP of Built By Adams, Inc.
For reference, Built By Adams could build two semi-custom homes in the same time frame as one custom home of the same size and scope. A semi-custom home is a much smoother process and leads to a more enjoyable experience for both the client and the builder. The number one reason for the time differential is that with a custom home project, many details and selections are unknown at the outset, in spite of going through a length and costly design and specification process. This forces the client and builder to enter into the custom home project with what are known as “allowances” and not hard costs on key items. The builder and client will then spend hundreds (possibly into the thousands) of additional hours of back and forth throughout the project to figure out exactly what is being built and how much these items truly cost. All of this added time is billed at an hourly rate + markup by the builder and architect.
The Semi-Custom Home Building Process with Built By Adams
Conversely, this is what you can expect in a semi-custom home project:
- You approach Built By Adams to build a new home on a lot you own or are thinking about buying.
- You choose a home plan from one of Built By Adams stock plans, an Art Form Home Plan, or hire a recommended draftsman to design a home to meet your needs. Having a plan to at least consider building is going to be helpful in guiding our initial consultation to see if this will work on the lot you own AND if it’s in the budget of what you want to spend. Costs vary widely depending on the design path chosen.
*Pro-Tip: If you have a rough idea of your budget, choose a house plan accordingly. If your budget is $400,000 including land, you probably can’t afford a 3,500 SF home.*
- You have already been pre-approved for a home loan from the bank of your choosing OR Built By Adams can provide financing if you choose a lot owned by BBA. As mentioned above, knowing what you can afford will guide all of the major decisions involved with your home.
- You receive a rough budget aka “Rough Ballpark” number to build this home on your lot. This is NOT an estimate. This is NOT a Contract to Build. This is a quick determination - let’s call it a “guesstimate” - of how much this home will cost to build based on historical data and current projects BBA has or has built. If you choose a stock plan, odds are we have a home currently being built or recently built with Contract to Build numbers to share. You can check out our Build Packages & Plans and Pricing and Fees pages to learn more.
- You decide to move forward with a home plan and invest in the BBA Design and Feasibility process. This is a low risk next step but does come with an investment on your part to determine exact costs, initial approval with a bank (if needed), and a Contract to Build on your lot. It basically covers the cost of our time to gather this information on your behalf.
- Now for the fun part - you get to customize your home and make it yours:
- Kitchen Design – you meet with a recommended kitchen designer and choose your cabinets, countertops, backsplash, and knobs.
- Flooring and Tile – from recommended vendors/installers
- Paint Colors
- Door Selections (interior/exterior)
- Plumbing Fixtures – from recommended providers.
- Electrical/Lighting – from recommended providers.
- Siding/Trim – Vinyl vs LP Smart Side with Vinyl trim or PVC
- Decking/Rails – type/color
- Roofing – Architectural shingles vs Metal or combination of both
- Heating/Cooling – Forced hot water baseboard Vs Electric Heat Pumps
- Upgrades – Zip-R insulated sheathing, gas fireplace, appliances, paving, water filtration, solar, decks, transfer switch for a generator, finished basement, ducted ventilation. Recommended suppliers/partners only.
- We can recommend several providers in each of the following categories that you can hire directly and save thousands: landscaping services beyond loam/seed, irrigation, custom built-ins, custom closets, walkways, retaining walls, and sheds. How? If a home-builder includes these services in their quote, they are marking up these specialty items and it costs you a lot more money and frankly we don't want to be in the middle of the extras.
As you can see, you get to choose and customize many of items that go into your home and we try and make this process as easy as possible. The key to the Semi-Custom process is all of these items are chosen BEFORE we arrive at a Contract to Build price. These items are listed out in great detail in our specifications and exhibits (your bank will need these) and are literally used to build your home and ensure no details are missed. It also means that your project will progress rapidly, as each subcontractor has the materials they need for each phase of your build process - no waiting for client selections because it’s already done!
Once we arrive at the Fixed Contract to Build, paperwork is signed and we are ready to get started. From this point until the end of the project, there will be 4 key onsite meetings:
1) Site Review – foundation location to be reviewed and signed off on by you and a surveyor (to ensure setbacks are met)
2) “Rough-In” Meeting – review of the electrical layout and lighting and final sign off on plumbing/heating.
3) Pre-Drywall – we review the insulation install and ensure nothing was missed for electrical/plumbing before we drywall.
4) Final Walkthrough – several months will probably have gone by between the Pre-Drywall meeting and the final walk-through but you are in good hands and you trust the Built By Adams process and over 6 decades of experience. We will develop a quick punch-list (if there are any items that need attention) and get those items done before move-in.
You will have an opportunity to ask questions during each of these meetings. We expect clients to keep a running list of their questions to review with us during these meetings rather than reaching out to us multiple times throughout the project. We are usually on site and we would hate for important questions or changes to get miscommunicated or go unanswered while we focus on your (and other clients’) projects.
Semi-Custom is NOT for Everyone...But for Some It's a Great Way to Get a High Quality House Without the Full Custom Price Tag
The semi-custom home building process is NOT designed for someone who needs to be involved in every decision throughout the construction process. It is not intended for those who want an architect or interior designer involved throughout the project. Or if you enjoy getting your hands dirty in a project or want to control the entire build process, semi-custom is also NOT for you. These are all signs that you are looking for a full custom home building experience.
The Built By Adams Semi-Custom home process is designed for those who want a beautiful, high performing, durable house built to a higher standard with a streamlined build process at a better price with less stress. When you choose Built By Adams for your semi-custom home project, you are hiring us for our experience and expertise with this process. Trust us and our process and you will not be disappointed.
Call Now 1-207-490-9886 or Fill Out the Form to Request a Free No Obligation Consultation.