The Complete Timeline for Our New Construction Home | House by the Bay Design (2023)

In today’s postin myNew HomeConstructionSeries, I’ll be talking all about our building timeline – how long everything took, the delays we experienced and important dates to keep in mind.

There are a lot of things that can delay a new construction home and we experienced many of them – Permit delays with the city, trade strikes, issues sourcing materials (of course our floor tile was back ordered).

One of the biggest unknowns (and risks) with buying new construction is the timing – it’s hard to say when you will actually get the keys to your new home.

So, how exactly does that work?

When we made the decision to buy our house, we signed an agreement to purchase and put down a deposit. The official paperwork was then signed a few days later after reviewing everything with our lawyer.

We signed our agreement on April 12, 2012 and had a closing date of November 26, 2012.

The Purchase Agreement included our builder’s best guess at a closing date (when the house would become officially ours) and a schedule for when they could change that date. We signed our agreement on April 12, 2012 and had a closing date of November 26, 2012.

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So, were you delayed?

Yes. Absolutely. Before construction even bagan, we received an official notice on October 16, 2012 that moved our closing date to May 23, 2013. Later, after construction was underway there was a trade strike and we received a notice on April 2013 that our date would move to June 4th. In the end, we officially closed and received our keys on June 26, 2013, 7 months after the original closing date.

Will my new home be delayed?


Things get tricky if you are selling one home to move into another, or renting a place that needs notice. I would definitely have a backup plan so you don’t end up displaced because of a construction delay.

I cannot stress how important it is to read every detail of your purchase agreement. In our case our builder could have technically pushed our closing date as late as April 24, 2014 – that’s 17 months past the original agreed date – that would have been our worst case scenario so we family and friends lined up to take us in, if needed.

Essentially it boils down to: Hope for the best, plan for the worst.

What else do I need to know?

In addition to your actual closing date, there are a lot of other important milestones to be aware of when buying a new construction home. Including meetings with the design centre to make structural and design selections and your deposit schedule.

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Right, when do I actually give them the monies?

I am in no way an experienced home buyer, but my understanding is that buying an established home is like buying anything else – We agree that I’m going to buy and then I give you the money – or really, my bank does, because: mortgages.

Buying new construction is a little different. Instead of handing over a down-payment and making mortgage payments right away, we made a series of deposits to our builder, 4 over the 3 months after we signed our purchase agreement that added up to about 6% of the purchase price.

We still had to arrange for a mortgage, but that doesn’t kick in until you officially take possession of the home on your closing date.

What about the Design Center? When do we pick our finishes and talk about “upgrades”?

Our builder separated their selection process into two different visits – one to make “structural” selections and one for “design” selections. I’ll explore what happens at both of those meetings in tomorrow’s post, but we made our stage 1 (structural) decisions on May 23, 2012 (very soon after signing our agreement) and our stage 2 (design) decisions on November 12th.

Okay, so when my home is built, how do I actually get my keys?

When we were within a few weeks of our closing date our builder reached out to us and we set up a Pre Delivery Inspection (PDI).

The PDI is an opportunity to walk through your home and point out any things that still need to be finished or any issues that need to be flagged. Mistakes can happen.

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For example, we actually had our builder finish our basement for us so that my parent’s space would be ready for them on day one. They had worked with the design centre to create a floor plan they liked and had a schedule of costs based on the selections they made. Once “upgrade” they had selected was to have the basement stairs open on one side (with a railing on one side instead of a wall). When we did our inspection we found that had not been done, we flagged it and were issued a refund for that upgrade.

There were also a bunch of other things that had not been finished yet that the builder had to resolve. If you watch home improvement shows, you’ll hear them sometimes call this a punch list.

About a week later we had another meeting with our lawyer to sign more documents, get our keys and officially take ownership of our new home.

So, when I take possession that means everything is done…right?

Mmmm not necessarily. We were one of the first in our development to take possession and while our actual house was done, there were still some things outside that were not. Like grass. Instead, we had a giant dirt pile and an old chain link fence.

Funny story: One day we came home to find that a sidewalk had been added in front of our house and three next to us. The sidewalk was part of the drawings that the builder had submitted to our city and so had to be installed. There are no other sidewalks on our street and so, we had essentially a sidewalk to nowhere.

Yup, it dead-ended at a telephone pole. This ridiculous addition was short-lived and after our neighbours started complaining to the city (worried sidewalks were going to be added to their properties as well) it was removed a few weeks later.

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But, I digress.

Eventually (on October 1st) our landscaping was completed and we had new sod, trees, and collection of climbing hydrangea plants (and no sidewalk).

Are there any other dates I need to be aware of after I take possession?


Even though the construction of our home was finished and we had taken possession we still had to wait for our city to essentially approve the builders work in terms of how the house “sits” on the property (grading, drainage etc.). This meant that that until the city officially accepts it, they can make the builder go back and make changes and we (the owner) cannot make any exterior changes. This means no fences, no decks, no gardens until the city gives the okay, which for us was June 3, 2014.

Technically we weren’t supposed to even paint our front door before this date past but we didn’t realize that until we’d already done it – oops.

The other dates to keep in mind are to do with your new home warranty. Okay, I honestly don’t know if you will have a new home warranty. Where we live (Ontario) we have a province-wide warranty program for all new construction homes called Tarion. It includes a schedule of dates by which you can submit claims if there are any things the builder need to change/fix after you take possession.

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I wish there was a visual to really show how long this whole process took.

Don’t worry friend, I got you.

The Complete Timeline for Our New Construction Home | House by the Bay Design (1)

Did I miss one of your new home timeline questions?

Let me know in a comment and I will try to answer them!

Next Post in the Series:Visiting the Design Centre and Making Upgrade Selections


What is the timeline for building a house? ›

The average new home building process takes approximately seven to eight months, per the US Census Bureau. This timeframe includes finalizing plans and obtaining permits, the actual construction of the home, and the final walkthrough.

When building a new home What is the order of the first for construction steps? ›

Newcomer's guide to the new home construction process
  • Step 1: Site prep. ...
  • Step 2: 1st Inspection. ...
  • Step 3: Framing. ...
  • Step 4: Plumbing, electrical, and HVAC. ...
  • Step 5: 2nd inspection. ...
  • Step 6: Insulation. ...
  • Step 7: Drywall. ...
  • Step 8: Exterior finish.
Oct 6, 2021

How much does it cost to build a house in 2022 in Bay Area? ›

The cost to build a mid-range home in San Francisco is approximately $700-$800 per square foot, while a high-end home will cost at least $800 per square foot.

How long does it take to build a house in California 2022? ›

Building a home in California takes an average of seven months, but it can take more or less time depending on a variety of factors including your home's size and style, the availability of labor and materials, and even the weather.

What are the 7 stages of construction? ›

Here's the process:
  • Step 1: Design. During this phase, the client places a project for bidding. ...
  • Step 2: Pre-Construction. ...
  • Step 3: Procurement. ...
  • Step 4: Construction. ...
  • Step 5: Commissioning. ...
  • Step 6: Owner Occupancy. ...
  • Step 7: Project Closeout.

Is 2022 a good year to buy a house in Bay Area? ›

The housing prices in Bay Area dropped in November 2022. According to current trends, housing prices in the majority of Bay Area communities will decline over the next twelve months. Zillow projects a decline of 6.1% in Bay Area home prices between November 2022 to November 2023.

Will 2022 be a good time to build a house? ›

Looking Forward to 2022

Going into 2022, we expect to see more positive shifts. The cost of construction is forecasted to decrease and stabilize with continued economic growth and the relief of supply chain halts. And with building materials easier to source, we predict a boom in new home builds.

Is it better to buy or build 2022? ›

Is it cheaper to build or buy a house? As a rule of thumb, it's cheaper to buy a house than to build one. Building a new home costs $34,000 more, on average, than purchasing an existing home. The median cost of new construction was $449,000 in May 2022.

Is 2022 a good year to buy a house in California? ›

Buying a first home in California during 2022 could be challenging for some buyers. That's due to an ongoing inventory shortage that has been with us for many months now. As of January 2022, most housing markets across California had less than a two-month supply of homes for sale.

Is 2022 a good time to buy a house in California? ›

The decline in sales and prices is the steepest of 2022 showing residential real estate in California is about take a dip heading into the winter of 2023. It's taken some time for prices to begin to reflect the weakness in buyer demand, but rising mortgage rates and expectations are reducing the market froth.

How much does it cost to build a house in California in 2022? ›

On average, building a custom home in California will cost $500 or more per square foot, according to Aballi — while building a tract home in California will cost $300 to $350 per square foot, according to Laniado.

What are the 8 stages of construction? ›

Throughout this eBook, we will take you through each stage of construction – Foundations, Substructure, Superstructure, Roofs, First and Second Fix, Surface Finishes and External Works – with a number of technical articles that outline common issues faced within each stage, with suggested ways to overcome these issues ...

What is Stage 5 construction? ›

The main contractor will produce working and fabrication information documents at Stage 5 to enable coordination of the full design including manufacturing of off-site materials and components.

What is Stage 4 construction? ›

At Stage 4, you complete everything that needs to be done before manufacturing and construction starts. For instead, if you are getting bespoke elements such as a staircase or non-standard window frames made by a supplier, the design for those should be finalised at Stage 4.

What are the 4 building types? ›

Buildings can be categorized into five different types of construction: fire-resistive, non-combustible, ordinary, heavy timber, and wood-framed.

What are the stages of house? ›

Outlined below are the six stages and timelines involved for building a brand-new home.
  • The Base Stage. ...
  • The Frame Stage. ...
  • The Lock-up/Enclosed Stage. ...
  • The Fixing and Fit-Off Stages.
  • Practical Completion Inspection (PCI) ...
  • The Handover.

What month in 2022 Should I buy a house? ›

Fall and early winter. A new analysis suggests that “buyers who close on their home in October will get the best deal compared to the spring buying season.” During the first full month of fall, buyers can expect to pay a 3.3% premium.

Will the price of property go down in 2022? ›

“It is a major concern and we feel construction costs have risen by about 25-30%, which may have a bearing on apartment prices over some time. Over the next 3-6 months, we expect property prices to go up by 10-15%.

Will it be cheaper to buy a house in 2022? ›

Los Angeles Housing Market Forecast 2022 & 2023

According to some analysts, home prices in Los Angeles are unlikely to drop, but the rate of increase will moderate. In other words, prices will continue to rise, albeit at a slower rate than in the preceding two years.

Will it be better to buy a house in 2022? ›

Houses are investments that continually grow in value, so yes, 2022 is a good year to buy a home. Even though interest rates are going up, hyperinflated housing prices are beginning to level out.

Should I wait until spring 2022 to buy a house? ›

The mortgage interest rate is declining, housing prices are stable, and buyers have leverage over sellers. Fannie Mae released a nationwide housing survey for November 2022 that reveals only 16 percent of respondents believe it is a good time to buy a house in 2022, unchanged from October's survey.

What will house prices do in 2022? ›

Expecting a 3.5% increase in average house prices during 2022, as quoted in the Sunday Times, 5th December 2021. Expecting a 3.5% increase in average house prices during 2022, as quoted in the Sunday Times, 5th December 2021.

Will New Build go down in value? ›

There are a number of reasons why new builds lose value. These include: New builds are overpriced compared to similar second-hand homes in the area. Developers don't always build new homes to a good standard.

Do new build properties increase in value? ›

The short answer is yes. From the data we have we can say that new builds appreciate at the same rate as all other properties. However, when we purchase a new build we have paid a premium, meaning the actual value can be 0-10% below the price at which you purchased it.

Will building materials go down in 2022? ›

In July 2022, the year-over-year change in materials and components for construction, excluding capital investment, labor, and imports was 14.8%. The growth rate of increase had dropped, but that has changed. The August figures show that combined materials and components in construction were up 15.2% year over year.

Will house prices fall in 2022 2023? ›

Zoopla says all the leading supply and demand indicators it measures 'continue to point to a rapid slowdown from very strong market conditions. We do not see any evidence of forced sales or the need for a large, double digit reset in UK house prices in 2023. We still expect house price falls of up to 5% in 2023. '

Why is it so hard to buy a house in 2022? ›

It's still a seller's market, and bidding wars are having a big impact. It's been a brutal year for homebuyers. A combination of surging demand and a persistent shortage of inventory has heightened competition and led to double-digit price growth.

Will California home prices ever drop? ›

The California median home price is forecast to drop 8.8% to $758,600 in 2023, following a projected 5.7% increase to $831,460 in 2022 from $786,700 last year. A less competitive housing market for home buyers and a normalization in the mix of home sales will curb median price growth next year, CAR said.

Will home prices drop in 2022 in Southern California? ›

In Southern California, the median home price is not rising by double-digits anymore. That trend is over. After a two-year housing boom, the housing market in Southern California is finally moderating. As expected, in October 2022, the median house price in Southern California declined 1.2% from September.

Will 2023 be a good year to buy a house? ›

Mortgage rates have skyrocketed, and the market has taken a beating. But don't expect 2023 to turn into a buyer's market just yet, housing experts say. Home sales have plummeted across the board, with sales of existing homes dropping for 10 months in a row, a new record. And home-price growth has stalled.

Will construction costs fall in 2022? ›

Like many sectors, the construction industry will not go unscathed. 2022 has seen a continual rise in construction material costs and the most recent Building Materials & Components Index reported a 16.7% increase for “All Work” for September 2022 year on year.

What is the cheapest house to build in 2022? ›

Cheapest Types of Homes to Build
  1. Shipping Container Home. The cheapest type of house to build in 2022 is a shipping container one. ...
  2. Tiny House. Another option for building a cheap home that has been gaining traction lately is building a tiny or tiny house. ...
  3. Off Grid Homes. ...
  4. Ranch-Style House.
Dec 3, 2022

How much does it cost to build a 2500 sq ft house in California? ›

Homeowners spend between $250,000 to $500,000 for a 2,500 square foot house.

Can a house be built in 3 months? ›

Depending on square footage, weather conditions, and the availability of workers and supplies, the construction of a new home can take anywhere from three months to over a year.

How long does it take to frame a 2500 sq ft house? ›

Framing a home usually takes 5-8 weeks.

Can a house be built in 5 months? ›

Construction Style

Custom-built homes average around nine months, while personalized production plans average near seven months. Because the floor plans used by production builders have been built many times before, there are generally fewer delays.

What is the fastest time to build a house? ›

Shelby county habitat for humanity on 17 December 2002 broke the then world record for the fastest house ever built, that is, in 3 hours, 26 minutes and 34 seconds.

Should I wait until 2022 to build a house? ›

Yes 2022 can still be a good time to build your custom forever home, despite rising costs and interest rates. Building your custom home is an investment in your family's lifestyle and should be looked at as a long term financial & lifestyle decision of living in your forever home for 5 or more years.

How long after drywall can I finish my house? ›

Generally, it takes between 4 to 6 weeks to install, depending on factors such as: The size of the home.

How long does it take to build a 3 000 sq ft house? ›

For a home that's approximately 3,000 square feet, you can anticipate about eight to ten months of construction time, provided that the market doesn't slow things down due to higher demand. If you're building a 6,000-square-foot home, anticipate a construction time of 12 to 13 months.

How much does it cost to frame a 2000 sq ft house? ›

The average cost for framing a 2,000-square-foot home will range from $14,000 – $32,000. If you add sheathing to the frame it will cost you an additional $4,000 – $16,000. The cost to frame a house fluctuates depending on the materials used, add-ons and the size and complexity of your project.

Can you frame a house in a week? ›

If you're planning to build a new home, it's important to factor in the time it will take to frame the house when you're making your plans. Depending on the circumstances, the average build time to frame a house is anywhere from one week to several months to complete the job.

How many bedrooms is a 2500 square foot? ›

Choosing home plans 2000 to 2500 square feet allows these families to accommodate two or more children with ease, as the home plans feature three to four bedrooms in varying sizes. As any growing family knows, bathroom space is a top...

What time of year is cheapest to build a house? ›

While spring is an ideal time to start building a home, the fall and winter months are usually when building materials and construction costs are lowest because there is less demand.

Can you complete on a house in 6 weeks? ›

You could say the home-buying process is as long as a piece of string – it could be anything from six weeks (exceptionally quick), to six months (not unusual) or even longer. But it can help you to understand which are the most time-consuming parts of the process, so that it doesn't drag on more than necessary.

What is the longest stage of building a house? ›

How long does each stage of construction take?
  • The slab or base stage: 1-2 weeks.
  • Frame stage: 3-4 weeks.
  • Lockup stage: 4 weeks.
  • Fit-out or fixing stage: 5-6 weeks.
  • Practical completion stage: 7-8 weeks.
Sep 7, 2022

What's the easiest house to build? ›

Ranch Homes

Ranch homes are typically single-story structures with attached garages. They're easy to find construction plans for and highly customizable, so you can find a home that fits your needs and budget.

What is the best month to build a house? ›

The good news is that the fall and winter months are often when building supplies and construction costs are lowest due to lower demand- this means you can get started on your new home at just the right time! Building houses during the winter months can have its advantages.

What is the cheapest fastest way to build a house? ›

The cheapest way to build a home is to design a simple box. Sticking to a square or rectangular floor plan makes the building and design simple. Generally speaking, building up is cheaper than building a sprawling one-story home, so you may want to consider planning for a multiple-story home if you need more space.


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