Rebuttal to A Blog Post: Buy a Stock Plan Over Custom House Plan

By John Garrett, June 25, 2009 | In Home Design |

Yesterday I was flipping through Twitter (which you can follow us @frusterio) and I came across a blog that promoted purchasing a stock plan vs. a custom home design.

I think the first thing to keep in mind is very simply, don’t blog to push your product. It is rejected by those who read blogs as being self promoting and nothing more than a commercial for your services. The consumer almost always sees this as self serving, so you loose before you ever get out the gate.

That said, I’ll preface this blog by saying, our firm sells both products (stock plans and custom plans), so no skin off our you know what if you decide to invest in one over the other.

However, the blog (http://housinginspector.com/?p=336) had a definitive agenda and that was to sell you a house plan.

Here are some thoughts on the blog:

  • When we talk about the “less” expensive purchase, we have to take into consideration the cost of wasted space, layout on a lot, first time builder ignorance and so on.
  • If you seek out an architect, you can expect to pay 7% to 12% of the cost of the home for the plans. Stock plans online range from $600.00 to say $3,000.00 depending on size and designer. That said, you can get a custom design for about 1% of the final cost of the home by seeking out a residential designer.
  • By spending 1% ($400K home would cost about $4K to design) you eliminate all of the above hazards. It’s going to fit on the lot, you’ve got a person to go after if the plans are poor for construction, you’ve got a person to answer question you may not know to ask and so on.
  • By your reason and with all do respect, a person should by a already built home because it saves them the cost of house plans.
  • If you’re building a home, don’t guess, see a pro.

As I write this blog, there is a meeting happening, the fifth of its kind, with a project consultant, lead designer and CEO of our residential design firm. Our client has had so many questions and so many revisions and yet, it’s been a great experience.

Sure, he isn’t spending $600.00 on a stock plan, but he’s got the ruler out and he’s going to town on a plan that is going to be perfect. He is investing about $13,000.00 in the plans, but it is a million dollar home!

Do you really want to build a million dollar home by picking out a house plan and tweaking it minimally?

House plan websites are for builders who are looking to keep cost down and turn max profit. They know how to build it, they understand the lots and above all, they AREN’T going to live in it.

Like I said, we sell stock plans… once in a blue moon and always to a builder. However, when it comes to a custom built home, get with a pro, have your five meetings, ask your hundred questions and enjoy the peace of mind.

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