Martin Custom Homes

7527 Buckley Road
North Syracuse, NY 13212
Office:(315)452-3245      Fax:(315)452-9454
Andy: (315)374-4531    Dave: (315)374-4527
email: [email protected]

Architect or Builder

Who comes first? Architect or Builder. 

You’ve decided you want to design-build a new home, but where should you start?   Should you bring your ideas to an Architect/Designer, or should you find the builder you would like to work with and have them jump into the mix?

These are good questions and should be considered very carefully.  If you have an unlimited amount of funds and don’t care what your ideas will cost, you can start almost anywhere.  But that is not where most people are.  Even in very high-end homes, people must still manage their budget.

In our opinion, the builder is where you need to start.  As your builder, we guide you, offer ideas, tell you when we think you’re making a mistake or have a crazy idea, advise when certain ideas may exceed the budget, and help you consolidate your ideas prior going to the architect.  All to save you time and money.  You get our advice, support and expertise at no charge!  

One of the first things we discuss is where you want to build your home.  We then look at your lot or land prior to getting deep into the design process.  Designing a home that won’t fit on a lot, or doesn’t work well with the lay of the land, means money spent for nothing.  Is the lot capable of having a walkout basement or daylight windows?  This could radically change the home design, presenting new ideas you’ve never imagined.  What if you designed a home prior to speaking to a builder and then find out that the lot you’re thinking of purchasing has significant issues?  Some issues can be corrected but it may require thousands and thousands of dollars of site work that you never anticipated.  Then your finished house design might not fit on another lot.

Prior to going to the architect, we spend quite a bit of time planning and establishing a preliminary budget and specification sheets put together based on the amenities you’re looking for in your new home. If your #1 dream is a very high-end kitchen, we might have you sit with our kitchen designer to get some rough ideas of the costs.

 There are many gives and takes in designing a home.  If you’re close to your budget ceiling, we advise on how to save some money on certain features in your home that can be postponed for a year or two.  When more dollars are available in the future, you can add these features to your home with minimal extra costs or disruption.

When you’re ready, we go to the architect with you.  This ensures that nothing is missed, everyone is on the same page, and we keep the process moving along.  We have an architect that we generally work with, but if you have someone you  prefer using that’s ok to.  We have worked with several architects over the years.  Most are very good. This is another area where we have no problem in sharing our advice.

We, as builders, have a much better idea of where the final price of your home is going to be.  Coming to us first gives you the ability to use our expertise as well as your architects. Did you know that we have an interior designer on our team that you can also take advantage of?  In the end you will have the home of your dreams, at a price you can afford.