Custom Home Building FAQs
Frequently Asked Questions on
Des Moines Home Building
K&V Homes strives to help all homeowners achieve their dream of building a new home. We do not consider a home to be in a “price range” but rather a budget. The steps to construct a new home are the same regardless of the price. The homeowner provides a budget for which we will help them receive the most value for their investment. By providing assistance with the square footage decisions and the allowances that accompany this budget, the homeowner will be able to determine the home that helps them stay within their budget.
Do you build different style homes?
We consider a home plan to be a starting point. Part of the joy of building a custom home is the ability to design every detail of your house to work for you and your family. Changes can be made not only on the interior but also the exterior. With more than 25 years in the home building business, we have built every home style and thrive on the innovation and design story. The exterior of the home is a reflection of your personal tastes as well. K&V Homes will work with you to combine home plans or incorporate the front facades of existing homes to provide the front elevation that you are truly happy with.
What is the communication procedure during the construction process?
A benefit of selecting K&V Homes as your Builder is that you will work directly with either Dean or Colin (the owners) throughout the construction of your new home. We visit our job sites a minimum of once a day, sometimes more, depending upon the stage of construction. You will meet with either Colin or Dean at your new home for several walkthroughs to go over design elements, options, and your selections. We oversee the trades and vendors that work on your home first hand and will not pass you off to a ‘construction manager’ or ‘jobsite foreman’. Our trade partners know what is expected of them and in return, we have the peace of mind that your new home is being constructed with only the finest of materials and skill required. Throughout the process, questions may arise for which you can either call or email. We will respond promptly, and if we do not know the answer we will contact the appropriate person.
When do certain home design and building decisions need to be made?
K&V Homes provides a Selection Schedule that lists a majority of the decisions that need to be made along with the accompanying benchmarks to help you stay on schedule. Some of these decisions may or may not apply to your particular home. Click here to download a Selection Timeline.
Does K&V have home plans for me to choose from?
We have plans that we have built in the past, as well as links to architectural design firms that have a tremendous amount of plans to choose from: Plum Building Systems, Advanced House Plans, Builder House Plans, ePlans, Architectural Designs, Ahmann Design, and Design Basics. Design Basics also offers their HER HOME section of home plans that simply make sense for today’s lifestyles.
Can we make changes to a plan and what happens if we wish to change/add something while the home is under construction?
Absolutely! This is going to be YOUR home, and we understand that there will be ideas that you wish to incorporate into the home that better suit your lifestyle. We will work with you to suggest ways to save money on a particular plan, as well as informing you of the cost of any changes that you wish to make.
We have also established a partnership with Plum Design Services, located at Gilcrest/Jewett Lumber, where custom home plans and front elevation modifications can be addressed by one of the designers.
Communication is key in the construction process. Should you decide to add/change something, we ask you to notify us immediately. At that time, we will discuss the addition/deletion or change, determine the additional cost/savings that will be incurred, and then sign a Change Order for the work. As the homeowner, you will always be aware of any additional costs for the project or your selections prior to the commencement of the work or installation of the product(s).
Do you build year-round?
Yes, we have a different process for building in the cooler months as well as the winter months that protects your investment. The local municipalities have a strict set of code regulations that we must follow as well.
Do I have the opportunity to make personal selections for our home?
We use a process that is based upon allowances for several “personal taste” items including, but not limited to, windows, cabinetry, countertops, flooring, tile, light fixtures, plumbing fixtures, and landscaping.
How will I know that my custom home building project is staying on budget?
With the use of an Allowance Schedule, we will keep you updated via email as to how much you have spent on your various selections with a to-date total. If you are under budget on a particular item, this will be reflected as a credit, just as if you exceed your budget, this will be reflected as an overture. As you proceed with your selection process, you will know exactly how much you are over/under budget.
How much will it cost to build our custom home in the Des Moines area?
After we have delivered a bid to you for the home plan that you selected, we will sign a contract for that amount. We are a contract builder, which means that WE are responsible for all of the costs of the construction of your home with the exception of the ALLOWANCES (as discussed above) along with changes/additions/deletions (also discussed above) that you may make. As a contract builder, we cannot bill you for any items that were forgotten, misquoted, broken, damaged, etc. By offering this type of contract, we can give you the peace of mind that you will know exactly what your costs are throughout the entire building process.
How long does it take to build a home?
The length of time typically depends upon the size of the home. For most homes that are three thousand square feet or less, we will sign a contract for 9 to 10 months. For homes that are greater than three thousand square feet, we will evaluate the home on a case-by-case basis and sign a contract ranging from anywhere between seven months to one year. In any situation, we will keep you up to date as to the progress of your home. We guarantee that we will finish the home prior to the completion date and will notify you 60 days and 30 days in advance to allow you the proper time frame to make the necessary move-in arrangements. To date, we have never missed a completion date. If the completion date does need to be extended for whatever reason, this date must be mutually agreed upon by both parties.
What types of remodel projects does K&V Homes perform?
We address all projects both large and small. From a basement finish to an all-house remodel, you are provided the same attention to detail. The only differences are the length and cost of the project.
Can we stay in our home while remodel work is completed?
This question is dependent upon your needs as a homeowner. All of our projects are performed in such a manner that the disruption to you the homeowner is kept to a minimum. Any exterior work is completed before the interior of the house is exposed. The work area is kept isolated from the remainder of the living space with limited access. In the event that the use of the area under construction is required, all efforts are made to accommodate these needs.
How long does a remodel project take from start to finish?
Depending upon the scope of work, a timetable is discussed with the Homeowner. Commencement of the project does not occur until all facets have been accounted for. We encourage selections to be made, or at least narrowed down, prior to the project commencement. Delivery and installation dates play a vital role in the work schedule. The ultimate goal of the project is to have each stage flow from one to the next.
Can I make changes to the project?
What project would not be complete with a few changes and adaptations to the original scope of work? As is true with every project, additional ideas arise as the project progresses. We understand that as the project takes shape, your vision may change and may result in a request to change the layout, add a window or remove a wall. The ability to adapt to these changes is what you can expect from our team.
Can we as the homeowners perform some of the work?
What is commonly referred to as “sweat equity” is one of many suggestions that Dean and Colin offer as a way to help the Homeowner reduce their project cost. Colin and Dean will work directly with you, the Homeowner, to determine the amount of time that you will need to complete the various task(s) and will adjust the schedule accordingly.
What incentive do I have for using K&V Homes?
Dean and Colin have always believed in trying to make a project affordable for the Homeowner. Discounts are passed along to you, the homeowner, so that you may receive your selections at a reduced price.
In addition to a monetary benefit, you will also receive the time and talents of a select group of individuals that have been hand-picked by K&V Construction Services. This unique group is comprised of some of the finest trades in the industry. Along with Colin and Dean, these companies participate in continuing education classes and seminars to stay aware of new code requirements, more efficient products, as well as the best practices to use while performing their tasks at your home.