What to Expect when Building a New Home

What to Expect During New Home ConstructionFind a Building Professional in the SCHBA Member Directory

This is it! You are breaking ground on your brand-new house! What can you expect as your home takes shape? Every home build is different, but there are certain steps that are consistent. Here’s an outline of what to look for.

Step 1: Prepare site and pour foundation

There is so much work to be done before a slab is poured or a brick is laid! The crew will stake out the building site on your lot, establish temporary utilities, clear the site of any brush or trees, rough grade the site, dig a well if needed, and excavate the site for the foundation. Then they’ll put in the footings and pour the foundation. Once the foundation has cured, there may be an inspection to approve the foundation work.

Step 2: Complete rough framing

The crew will construct the frame of the house on top of the foundation. You’ll see exterior and interior walls, stairs, ceilings and floors start to take shape. The roof and exterior walls will have sheathing and house wrap applied. Once complete, the framing will also be inspected to ensure that it meets code.

Step 3: Complete rough plumbing, electrical and HVAC

All those “behind the scenes” things that make a house run get put in next. Ductwork for the HVAC, plumbing systems and pipes, and electrical wiring… they will all be installed at this early stage to make sure it all runs like clockwork when the time comes. And at the end of this phase — you guessed it – more inspections for the plumbing and mechanical components of the home.

Step 4: Install insulation

The crew will apply your choice of insulation to the exterior walls, floors, crawl spaces, and attic or roof.

Step 5: Complete drywall and interior textures; start exterior finishes

Now your building site is really starting to look like a home! The interior walls will be drywalled and taped, and the new walls and ceilings will get some texture and a coat of primer.

Step 6: Finish interior trim; install exterior driveways and walkways

On the inside, molding, baseboards, door trim, and stair rails will be put up. This is also when those cabinets and bathroom vanities you picked out with such care will be installed.  Outside, crews will be installing your new roof, and siding, and pouring any exterior walkways or patio areas. Your driveway may be poured at this time as well: a good contractor will time driveway completion to minimize the wear and tear on the surface from heavy equipment.

Step 7: Install hard-surface flooring and countertops; complete exterior grading

Flooring installation and tile work will begin now! Watch your kitchen take on its character as countertops and backsplashes are installed. Meanwhile, there may be additional grading work going on. Your property has withstood some hard use from construction equipment and trucks. Now it will be refined for optimal drainage and to set the stage for sod or landscaping.

Step 8: Finish mechanical trims; install bathroom fixtures

At this stage, workers will do final preparations on the plumbing and electrical as they get ready to install kitchen appliances and plumbing fixtures. Your bathroom takes shape as your tub or shower, sinks, and toilets are put in.  This is also when the final components of your HVAC system are set up and made operational. Meanwhile, if your exterior is not yet finished, your trim, shutters, and exterior door will be installed.

Step 9: Install mirrors, shower doors and finish flooring; finish landscaping

You can see the finish line! The job site will begin to look much cleaner: it’s now safe to install carpeting and interior glass components like mirrors and shower doors.  Now that the grading is complete outside, the landscaping crew can start building beds, mulching, and planting trees, shrubs, and plants.

Step 10: Final inspection

The building code inspector will conduct a final walkthrough once the work is complete. If everything is up to code, he will issue a Certificate of Occupancy showing that your home is safe for you and your family. If he finds any errors, they will have to be fixed and pass a final inspection before you move in.

Step 11: Move in!

Congratulations — it’s finally time for you to enjoy the new home you’ve been dreaming about. Welcome home!

Ready to start?

See the Sheboygan County Home Builders Member Directory to find architects, designers, and home builders today!