Frequently Asked Questions and Answers
For your convenience we have grouped answers to FAQs according to the topics that our customers have found to be of most interest in helping them to get started.
There are a lot of different factors to be considered when building your custom home. We encourage you to contact one of our experts at 1-888-546-9663. They can get into the specifics of your project with you to find the best way to build the home you want.
How Much Does it Cost?
Building a Home
This will depend on the type of construction, size, design complexity and quality of finishing of the home you want. The location and nature of the property can also make a big difference. For these reasons using a rough dollars per square foot approach for budgeting is not a good idea. We can help you determine a realistic building budget based on the design you want and the specific details of your project.
Buying a Design and Material Home Package
We offer over 400 different designs which can all be customized to suit individual budgets and tastes. Prices range from under $40,000 to over $220,000. Each home package includes design, detailed construction drawings and all the material required to build the structure and weather-tight exterior finishing of the home. We can also create a unique home package based on your own design.
Building a Specific Design
If you have the name available we can give you the cost of the home package. One of our expert consultants will be pleased to go over the details of your project to help you create a realistic budget for building the complete home. We also help you to find the local builder resources needed to get your home built at the best possible price.
On average we find that our customers save about $5 to $10 per square foot on the total cost of building the home. For more complex homes on challenging sites the savings can be much higher. Making sure the design is what you want and is best suited to the property before construction work starts can save a lot of money and stress.
What are the Advantages of Using a Design and Material Home Package?
The contents have been developed over thousands of successful projects to give you the best and most affordable way to build any type of custom home. Design, detailed construction drawings, technical assistance and all the materials required to build the structure of the home are included. Choose one our network of local builders or use your own to construct the home to either the lock-up stage or full turnkey.
Staying in Control and Saving Money
The Linwood package not only saves you money but also time and stress. You get a design that you know works for your property and meets your budget before you start. You select the right quality materials to get the result you want, all delivered efficiently to site and available when needed. You keep control while your selected contractor builds faster and at a lower price.
Faster Build Time
The time taken will depend on how fast you make decisions about your design and the materials you want. We can always deliver materials by the time they are needed on site because they can be manufactured and shipped while you are clearing the land and getting foundations in place. Time saved is also money saved and there is no faster way to build a custom home.
Guaranteed Quantity and Fixed Material Pricing
The quantity of materials is always guaranteed, unlike lumberyard rough quotes. Our pricing is also fixed for a realistic length of time to allow you to obtain permits and get ready for construction. We put our buying power to work to get you better materials and give you the benefit of protection against the material price increases that happen in the peak building season.
We specialize in building true custom homes. This starts with a Site Specific Design TM which can be unique or a modification of one our existing designs. You then select from a wide range of products to get the look and feel you want in your new home. All materials have been carefully selected for appearance, price, performance and the ability to meet national building standards.
How do I Create the Best Design for My Property?
Complete Design Flexibility
All our existing designs can be changed to meet the needs of individual homeowners and their property. You can make the design smaller or larger, change the exterior look and interior floor plan or add a basement of loft. Nearly all our customers take advantage of our complete design flexibility to get the home of their dreams.
Unique Custom Design
A large number of our customers create a totally unique design working with one of our expert design consultants. We specialize in helping create a site-specific design to give the best result on a given building site. The objective is to give our customers the custom design they want and at the same time is able to meet their budget requirements.
Site Specific Design ™
Good site specific design meets the needs of the homeowner and provide the best solution for access, view, slope of property, placement of well/septic field, orientation to sunlight etc. It must also meet planning department guidelines such as set-backs and height restrictions. Creating the right design upfront will save a lot of money in construction.
Using an Existing Design
We often work with clients and their designers or architects to take their existing concept plans to full construction drawings. This way we can work out the best and most efficient way to build the structure of the home and the right combination of materials needed in the home package. As we save time in the process we can give you credit for the value of the concept design work.
Sale of Plans
We do not sell our plans as these are an integral part of our design and material package. The package, together with the services of a good local builder, gives you the best and most affordable way to build a custom home. Getting this result means using our complete building solution, not just using design and construction drawings that may not be suitable for your property.
What Material Choices Do I Have?
Extensive Range of Materials
You can fully customize your home by choosing from thousands of different products. These are all carefully selected by our in-house experts to give you the best combination of appearance, performance and value for money. The quality of our lumber and other building materials is renowned. Using the materials in our home package gives you a better looking and better built home.
Higher Quality Materials
Using better materials than are available at the local lumberyard allows you to build faster with less waste. A good example is the use of straight, kiln dried, pre-cut lumber in the right lengths. This is more cost-efficient in building the structure and gives a better finished interior result. Making good choices upfront saves a lot of money in construction and later in maintenance.
Pre-cut and Factory Organized
Using accurate pre-cut components saves installation time on the job. Many of the products required to build a custom home are specially manufactured with varying lead times. We factory organize all components and efficiently ship them together. They are also identified to be easy to find when needed. This process saves a lot of costly construction and administrative time.
Prefabrication is a good choice when you have a short time to build the home or there is a lack of skilled labor available. It also works well if you are planning to build the home yourself. Other considerations include having the space to use a crane if needed and the freight cost from the factory. Make sure your builder gives you a proper credit if you select this option.
Specialty Products from National Manufacturers
These companies make the wide variety of quality products needed to give our customers the best ability to customize their home. They also offer meaningful warranties to support their product in the field, unlike smaller suppliers. Most importantly, you get the benefit of our buying power with national companies and our ability to get extended protection against price increases.
What is the Best Way to Build My Home?
Right Design, Materials and Builder
We supply custom design, working drawings, technical support and all the materials required to build the structure of the home. We also help you to find the best builder for your project and budget. The result is a more cost-effective and easier way to build any custom home.
Accessing a Quality Builder
We have a large network of independent local builders available across the US and Canada. You can choose one of these or we can help you select one of your own. We make sure that they understand the value of the Linwood home package and pass all the cost saving benefits on to you.
Efficient Use of Local Builders
The Linwood design and material package has been developed over many years and the successful construction of thousands of custom homes. It will give the best result and lowest cost outcome when used by any competent builder. Builders have everything available when needed and can construct the home faster and pass the time savings on to you.
Owner as Builder
Some Linwood customers act as the general contractor of their own homes. If you have the time and experience it can save you even more money. However some areas actually require the hiring of a general contractor. Depending on your circumstances we can help you select the right combination of contractors for your project.
Engineering and Permits
The general contractor is responsible for obtaining all necessary permits and approvals. We supply high quality detailed construction drawings as part of the package. Planning departments will tell you if they have any special requirements to meet local seismic and other conditions. If this is the case we will co-operate with your engineer to help revise drawings as needed.
Can You Ship to My Area?
We have delivered to all kinds of locations in the US and Canada as well as over 26 different international destinations. A lot of our business is relatively close to major population areas but we are also specialists in delivering efficiently to more remote areas. We work with you and your builder to make sure quality structural and exterior finishing materials are on site and available when needed for construction.
Method of Delivery
We ship by container or by truck depending on what is the best option for our customers. In either case our shippers are experts in loading to meet volume/weight constraints and prevent damage. Shipping long distance by container is popular as long as it can be easily unloaded at the final destination. If trucks are used we make sure they are the right size to minimize shipping costs.
Timing of Shipment
We coordinate timing with you and your general contractor to determine the required delivery date. The shipment is usually timed to arrive when the foundations of the home are in place so the builder can start right away. Once final decisions are made the materials can be manufactured and shipped while the general contractor is clearing the site and preparing foundations.
We are experts in loading material efficiently to get it to where it is needed and only charge actual 3rd party cost on delivery with no mark-up. Custom homes contain a lot of specialty items not available at local lumberyards. We factory organize all materials needed and ship them together. This is less costly than having multiple deliveries of components from different manufacturers going to the building site.
Factory Organized Loading
Our materials are all clearly marked by area of use and loaded so that they can be easily sorted when they arrive at their destination. The construction drawings use the same identification numbers. As a result the builder quickly finds what is needed at each stage of construction. This saves a lot of time and also prevents mistakes by making sure the right material is used in the correct place.
How Long Does It Take?
Building a Home
It generally depends on the size and type of home you are planning to build. Other factors include time taken to get permits in your area, timing of construction and availability of skilled resources. It takes longer than most people think to design and build a custom home but reckon on a minimum of 6 months. In any event, building with Linwood will be your fastest possible option.
Obtaining Building Permits
The time taken can vary a lot depending on where you are building. Many planning departments are short staffed and some areas require local engineering certificates. This means approvals can take anywhere from 15 days to over 6 months. Apply as soon as possible. Using our high quality site-specific plans helps get approvals faster and minimizes possible delays.
Construction to the Lock-up Stage
For an average home, the upfront work to generate custom design, get permits and install foundations takes about 3 months. Building the structure to lock-up using a home package only takes about another month. The exterior of your home is now secure, weatherproof and ready for interior finishing. Complex homes in challenging locations will take longer.
Best Time to Start Construction
It is easier to build in dry weather but most people want to build at the same time of year. You can build in winter if foundations are in place and you often have better choice of contractors and can get lower pricing during this time. If you have your permits in place and are ready to start quickly this will also often let you negotiate a better price.
Why Should I Trust Linwood?
Operations Started in 1968
We have now been in business for over 48 years and over 10,000 customers have trusted us to provide value in helping them build their new dream home. We have continued to develop the contents of our home package to give you a better way to build so you can save money and reduce risk. We give you more design options, better materials, expert help and valuable technical expertise.
We are experts in the design and supply of all types of homes using wood construction techniques. The company specializes in contemporary post and beam homes but also supplies conventional wood frame homes and specialty buildings like log and timber-frame homes. If you are building any kind of custom home we can help you.
Linwood has been privately owned and operated by the same individuals for the last 18 years. Ownership is heavily involved in the day to day management of the business. This ensures that customers consistently get great value for money. The ongoing pursuit of excellence has resulted in world-wide recognition as one of the leading experts in the design and building of wood frame homes and structures.
National Homebuilder Recognition
We have won over 20 national homebuilder awards in the last 6 years as well as many local awards. These are given for a combination of outstanding design, exterior looks, interior features and user friendly floor plans. All homes were true custom builds using a design and material package. Even more impressive is the fact that we were usually competing against homes that cost far more to build.
References from Customers and Builders
We have hundreds of references and testimonials from both customers and builders from all over North America. A large sample of what people say about us is shown on our website. Usually we can find someone close to where you are planning to build to tell you why they chose Linwood and details of their experience.
Are Your Homes Energy Efficient and Eco-Friendly?
We have been involved in building many such homes over the years. In fact a lot of our customers are in remote locations where issues often arise concerning power generation, water supply and septic fields. Most of these can be best solved in the initial design phase. The products needed can then be incorporated into the structure of the building to avoid costly retro-fit alternatives.
Use of Renewable/Recycled Products
We use these types of products extensively wherever possible. Framing lumber only comes from sustainably managed forests and is certified as a renewable resource. Many of our national manufacturers use recycled materials as part of their manufacturing process to give a quality result in an environmentally responsible way.
We only supply high quality framing lumber in lengths which are optimized to best meet design requirements. Our quantity surveyors are experts in determining exactly what is needed and then making sure you get the right quantities to eliminate costly on-site waste. Another benefit is that, unlike other suppliers, we can and do guarantee there will be enough material to build the structure.
Energy Efficient Design and Materials
We offer a wide choice of designs and products to meet the most demanding climates and building codes. Wood is a good natural insulator and our designs can be modified to allow extra insulation to be placed in the wall/roof cavities. We also supply high quality double or triple-paned windows with solar gain/shield options to maximize comfort in use as well as greater energy efficiency.