How to Build a Home on Your Land: Tips for Houston Home Buyers

Have you always dreamed of building the perfect home on your very own plot of land?

The thought of waking up in your beautiful, newly constructed custom home surrounded by acres of land and nature sure sounds like a homeowner's dream. That's why here at Dunn & Stone, we love turning our home buyers' dreams into their reality with our ‘Build On Your Own Land' Program!

While there are plenty of important aspects to consider when you build and design your own home, securing the best-suitable land to get the construction process started is the most critical step in the building process.

Below you'll find a list of everything you need to know when you're looking to build on your land in and around the Houston area.

Find Your Perfect Lot

First thing's first: when you're ready to build your dream home on your own lot in the Greater Houston area, you will need to find the right amount of land that fits your needs.

The lot size will depend on the type of custom home you're looking to build and your personal preference. Whether you're looking to acquire five acres or fifty, knowing how much land is available in the area of your choice will help determine which lot size best suits your needs.

From neighborhoods within the top Houston and surrounding area school districts to plots of land to plant your family roots, our lot experts can help connect you to the best land opportunities right here in our community. Here's what to consider when choosing the perfect location for your new home.

Considerations When Choosing The Perfect Lot

First, think about the location and how close it is to essential services and amenities.

Is the lot near top-rated schools, healthcare facilities, and shopping areas?

These factors can have a huge impact on both your family's quality of life and the property's resale value.

You'll also want to consider the natural environment of the lot. Does it offer the scenic views or privacy you're looking for?

At the end of the day, it really comes down to preference. Understanding how factors like these can affect your comfort will help in creating a home that really feels like yours.

Things To Avoid When Choosing A Lot

Steer clear of lots that are near busy roads and under flight paths to reduce noise pollution, and be wary of land with poor soil quality or uneven terrain, which can complicate construction and increase costs.

It's also wise to avoid areas far from utilities like water, sewage, and electricity. Extending services can be very expensive, and are likely to delay your building timeline.

Assess whether the lot you want to purchase has any of these issues and avoid buying a lot that needs many adjustments down the line, since this can quickly turn into a daunting process.

Make Sure Your Lot Meets Local Requirements

When building a custom home in Houston, TX, you must comply with specific requirements outlined by city and county building codes. These standards are designed to protect property values and keep your new custom-built home safe and structurally sound.

During the site preparation process, it's also important to verify that your chosen lot does not lie within flood zones or wetlands and to make sure your land is ready for electrical and plumbing installations. This helps you avoid complications during your build.

What Are The Local Lot Requirements In Houston?

In Houston, TX, local lot requirements are designed to ensure that every new home built enhances the community and maintains safety standards.

Houston doesn't have zoning laws that dictate how land can be used, but it does require builders to follow ordinance codes that specify how land can be subdivided. You'll also need to stay in compliance with utility access requirements that allow homes to access essential services. Securing a construction loan often depends on compliance with these regulations.

Another critical requirement is setbacks, which dictate the distance from your house foundation to any other buildings on adjacent properties.

Prospective homeowners should work closely with experienced homebuilders and consult city planning documents to fully understand these requirements. Careful preparation helps to make the homebuilding process a win-win situation for both the builder and the homeowner by ensuring all legal and practical standards are met before construction begins.

What Are Setbacks?

Setbacks are specific regulations set by home owner’s associations in Houston that require a certain distance to be maintained between a building and the property boundaries or other structures.

The rules around setbacks exist to ensure privacy, safety, and adequate space for emergency services to operate.

Setbacks can vary widely depending on things like the size of the lot,and its location. It's important for homeowners and builders to verify these details early in the planning stage so they can customize the home's design accordingly.

Survey The Land

Next, it’s time to thoroughly survey your plot of land in the Greater Houston area.

You’ll want to have a licensed surveyor examine the property to identify obstacles like trees that might complicate the construction process.

Surveying your land often prevents costly surprises as you build your new home, but it's important to remember that discrepancies between the survey results and the actual conditions of the land are common.

How To Choose A Licensed Surveyor

Choosing a licensed surveyor is a crucial step in ensuring your plot of land is accurately evaluated before you begin to build your home.

It's important to work with one or more professional contractors with experience in Texas and the Greater Houston area who understand the unique challenges of the local terrain and ordinance regulations.

Look for a surveyor who is part of a recognized lot program and who holds a commitment to precision and ethical practice. Make sure to check their credentials and read reviews from other builders or homeowners.

Sometimes, you can also contact their previous clients to discover how effectively they managed land discrepancies and contributed to the success of their construction projects.

Visiting their past survey sites can provide additional assurance of their expertise.

What Is Checked In A Land Survey?

During a land survey, a professinoal examines key features of a property to verify that every aspect of the land meets the necessary conditions for construction.

The survey assesses the topography of the land to identify variations in elevation that could affect the foundation and overall structure of the home. It also measures boundaries to confirm the exact dimensions of the property, which makes it easier to complying with local building laws and setback requirements.

The surveyor also checks for any easements that may affect where utilities and driveways can be placed.

They'll also map natural features such as trees, water bodies, and significant rock formations that could influence the final design and development plans.

Check On Deed Restrictions

Next up, be sure to consult with your building team or Realtor to review any deed restrictions before purchasing your plot of land.

Understanding these restrictions is important because they dictate everything from the type of custom homes you can build to standard features and energy efficiency requirements.

This ensures your final walkthrough meets all community standards, keeping your home financing process straightforward and aligned with local guidelines.

What Are Deed Restrictions?

Deed restrictions are sometimes called restrictive covenants. They are legally enforceable conditions written into the title of a property.

These restrictions dictate various aspects of what can and cannot be done on the property.

Typical restrictions include the types of structures that can be built, the minimum size of buildings, architectural styles, color schemes, and landscaping requirements.

They can also limit the type of alterations that may be made to existing plans. This is to be sure that all modifications meet community standards.

Deed restrictions often increase property values. They are put in place by developers or homeowner associations to maintain a certain level of uniformity and quality within a neighborhood.

Are Deed Restrictions Common?

Deed restrictions are very common in planned communities, especially in the Greater Houston area and other urban centers. They often exist in neighborhoods with high development interest, and can help manage growth while preserving the area's character.

Potential home buyers should thoroughly review deed restrictions before completing their purchase, and consult with professionals to understand how these might affect their property rights and building possibilities.

Start Working With A Custom Home Builder In Houston Today

Now that you've found your ideal plot of land in the perfect location to build on, it's time to put your building plans into action.

As one of the best custom home builders in Houston, Dun & Stone is equipped to guide you through the home building experience from start to finish.

We'll help you do everything from choosing the right floor plan to selecting the materials that match your style and budget. Whether you need advice on construction loans or another pair of eyes during the final walk through, we're here to help you build the home of your dreams.

Contact us today to get started!

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