How to Build Your Own Home

Design, First-Time Homebuyers, Investors

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When looking for a home, the most difficult part is finding a house that suits all of your needs and the needs of your family. For this reason, more and more people are opting to build their own home, not only for the freedom and creativity it affords, but for the financial benefits it offers. 

But there’s a lot of work that goes into filling a vacant property lot. Where to begin? And where to go from there? In this article, we’ll give you the basic information you need to get started on the home build of your real estate dreams.

For more immediate information on homebuilding or to browse vacant lots, please visit McCall Homes online today!

What you can expect to learn from this blog:

  • Preparing a construction site
  • Pouring foundations and concrete footings
  • Installing and running utilities
  • Pouring concrete slabs
  • Framing, flooring, and siding
  • Roofing

For more information on what follows the preliminary stages of housebuilding, stay tuned for our next guide in which we will discuss drywall, trim, painting, and other finishing touches!

Preparing the Site

The first stage of any home-build begins with site preparation. At the beginning phase of construction, you’ll need to clear the lot of debris, plant life, brush, and anything else that may impede your work area. Obviously, you have to remove these obstacles in the acreage where the house will be built, but you’ll also need to clear the surrounding areas, at least up to a 25-foot radius. This ensures you’ll have adequate space for the property, building materials, and heavy equipment.

If you live near a water source like a river or creek, you may need to get help from an earthmoving contractor to make alterations to the topography of the lot. In addition to this, you will work with an electrician to run temporary power sources and energy panels, a waste management company to take care of trash cans and rubbish bins, and you will need to rent a portable bathroom for contractors working on the site.   

Pouring the Foundation

Once the site is fully prepared, the next phase of foundation pouring can begin. This stage of work is generally more expensive, but well worth the effort and investment, since it forms the fundamental structure on which your home will be built. 

First, the lot will be excavated, probably with the use of rented equipment or the assistance of an excavation expert. In tandem with a foundation specialist, the excavator and the specialist will lay the groundwork for your house by pouring concrete to make the structure’s footings and foundations.

When this is happening you should expect the process to begin with trench-digging, followed by professional checks on dimension and depth. Once confirmed for accuracy, the concrete footings will be poured. In order to drain water away from the site and to prevent erosion of the footers, footing drains are put in. Further waterproofing methods follow. Lastly, when the foundation is completely poured, specific holes and drain lines will be drilled into the concrete to pave the way for utilities and pipes.

Utilities and Plumbing

Plumbing pipes and electrical lines are installed next. Once completed, these utilities will be covered with concrete slab.

Getting Slab-Happy

Concrete slab is preceded by a few other processes. First, you’ll need to hire a contractor. This professional begins by installing a slab foam board, which acts as insulation. Next, a gravel base is laid over the board. This acts as a foundation for the slab concrete. For insulation from vapor, a plastic barrier is laid down, followed by a protective wire mesh reinforcement. This mesh will be laid slightly above grade so as to position it in the middle of the incoming concrete and to maximize its strength. 

Finally, it’s time to pour the concrete! With the use of ready-mix trucks, large amounts of concrete can be quickly and evenly distributed across the foundation of your unit. If your home has a garage or a basement, concrete will also be poured for those areas.

Frames, floors, and more

Now that your foundation and slabs have been put in place, you can begin the process of building something that actually resembles a house. 

The first to arrive on site are the carpenters. The construction professionals specialize in framing and laying the lumber to build a “skeleton.” Their work produces the barebones structure of the home, framing out the walls, floors, sidings, and ceilings. 

Many homeowners enjoy this phase of the build the most, because framing is executed quickly and it has an immense impact on the appearance of the site. You will begin to see the outline of your future home, and if you have a bit of carpentry or construction experience, you can even help out in the building process!

Once the frame is up, windows and doors will go in. If you have a home with a skylight, this will also be installed. 

Raising the Roof

Last but certainly not least, it’s time to install the roof. Whether you go for a base of shingles, tiles, or solar panels (link to sustainable housing), it’s best to hire a roofing contractor for this phase of the project. A good roof, when properly installed, can last for 40, 50, even 100 years. Trust us, we’ve built entire communities from the ground up, and if there’s something you don’t want to replace on a regular basis, it’s a roof. Both your stress levels and your wallet will thank you for choosing a quality roofer to do the job.

Once the roof installation is complete, it’s time to celebrate: you’ve done it! You’ve built a house, quite literally, from the ground up. Now all that’s left is to get the creative juices flowing and begin to decorate, paint, and personalize.

This concludes our brief guide on how to build your own home. In our next home building blog, we’ll discuss how to put the finishing touches on your unique house.

For more information on homebuilding, energy efficient housing, multi-family units and more, please contact McCall Homes today! We serve the Billings, Montana, area with multiple communities featuring family-friendly residencies, recreation, and amenities. Call today to tour one of our beautiful model homes, or browse our available lots if you’re feeling inspired to build your own!


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