How a Home is Built


Return to the New Home Construction Process main page

Knowing how the building process operates can make building your new home that much more enjoyable. These steps illustrate what takes place during the construction of your home. Depending on your builder, some of these steps may occur at different times of the home building process.


STEP 1

FOUNDATION

The site is cleared of any rocks, trees, and debris using a backhoe and bulldozer. The crew then levels the site and installs forms and footings for the foundation. If your home will have a basement, then the hole is dug, and footings and foundation walls are shaped and poured. After the concrete is poured, there cannot be any activity on the construction site until the concrete is preserved. Once the concrete is ready, the foundation walls are waterproofed and plumbing features such as drains and sewer taps are then installed. A city inspector will have to check to see if the foundation mechanisms are correctly installed and meet regulations. Once this has been authorized, the foundation forms will be removed.

STEP 2

FRAMING

The skeleton of the house—floors, walls, and roof—are built. Plywood covers the exterior walls and roof. Windows and exterior doors are then put in. The skeleton is concealed with a protective barrier that prevents water from getting into the house, which will reduce the chance of mold and wood rot developing later on.

STEP 3

PLUMBING, ELECTRICAL AND HVAC

Along with the siding and roofing being installed, the electrical and plumbing stages begin by putting pipes and wires through the interior walls, ceilings, and floors. Showers and bathtubs are put in place, and water supply lines are connected. Heating, ventilation and air-conditioning (HVAC) is next on the list. Ductwork is installed; HVAC vent pipes are placed through the roof and insulation goes in the floors, walls, and ceilings. After this step is complete, there are three inspections, checking the rough framing, and plumbing, electrical, and mechanical systems.

STEP 4

INSULATION

Insulation is the next phase in making your progressing home more comfortable, which creates a more energy efficient home. Most houses are insulated in the exterior walls, attic, and floors that are stationed above the basement. Insulation materials most commonly used are fiberglass, cellulose, and foam.

STEP 5

DRYWALL AND EXTERIOR FINISHES

Drywall is put up and textured. Primer is then painted on the interior walls. Exterior finishes such as brick, stone, and siding start to be installed.

STEP 6

TRIMWORK / DRIVEWAYS AND WALKWAYS

The interior walls are painted and wallpapered. Interior doors, baseboards, window sills, moldings and other ornamental trim are positioned. Cabinets, vanities, and fireplace materials are also mounted throughout the house. Depending on your builder, they may want to construct the exterior driveways, walkways, and patios during this stage, or may wait until the end to do this.

STEP 7

FLOORING, COUNTERTOPS, LOT GRADING

Countertops and flooring such as ceramic tile, vinyl and wood are installed during this phase. Exterior finish grading is finished so appropriate drainage moves away from the home so the landscaping process can begin.

STEP 8

INSTALL FIXTURES

The electrical, plumbing, and HVAC features are completed in this stage. Light fixtures, outlets and switches are finished along with the electrical panel. Sinks, toilets and faucets are installed; HVAC features and registers are also installed.

STEP 9

FINISHING TOUCHES & LANDSCAPING

Final touches are done such as putting up mirrors and shower doors; carpet is also installed. Exterior landscaping is accomplished as well by planting trees, shrubs, and grass along with any other landscaping aspects desired. The final clean up and inspection then occur; if there are any deficiencies found, there may be a follow-up review to check if the defects have been fixed.

STEP 10

FINAL WALKTHROUGH

A pre-settlement walkthrough between you and your builder occurs during this final phase of the home building process. The builder will show you around your new home and familiarize you with the features of it. They will also discuss proper maintenance and warranty coverages. If you find a flaw in your home, this is the chance to notify the builder before you move in. Sample walk-through checklist.