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Anyone know anything about building custom houses?


Beetroot

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My wife and I have been looking for a new house for the last six months or so and nothing has really gotten us excited. I'm toying with the idea of buying an empty lot and building a custom house. What we want is a two story industrial style building. Living quarters upstairs, garage/shop downstairs. Just brainstorming for now, so any input about anything in this process would be greatly appreciated.

Anyone know how financing works for something like this? Can I get one mortgage for the land, then another for the building I want to put on it?

I'm not thinking anything fancy or extravagant. Hopefully under $300k for the whole deal, and hopefully in central Tempe. Have found some properties that would work for $100k or so, but I'd have to knock down the houses currently sitting there. Not sure if there are any empty lots left.

Think it's possible to build a two story steel frame building with the upstairs portion finished for $200k? Thinking maybe 1800 sq ft of living space and the same down below for garage/shop.

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Lenders usually won't give loans on a property that has a lien on it for new construction. Not a 100% sure but would bet your life on it. :lol

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If Marco and Lisa ever decide they need to get their butts home to build Tom's house they would be your best local ACE source. I'd tell you to PM him but if he's bored enough back east he should see this

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Oh.....and Tempe is basically built and landlocked. You'd likely have better luck on virgin dirt jsut south in Chandler

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Lenders will typically require at least 20% equity and liquid cash reserves in some amount (10%). Last quote I got was $126/ft (does not include cost of the lot). My architect also charges $3/ft to design and get you to permit (also not included in the $126/ft).

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Looks like building from the ground up is tricky and expensive. Thinking about either buying a property with a livable house and building a big shop behind it. Then just remodel the house. Not as exciting as a full custom deal but could still be pretty cool.

Either that, or buy a commercial building already built. I'm not sure what kind of issues I'd run into with that yet but I think it might be possible.

Or... just buy a place on the outskirts. http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/718-N-Merrill-Rd-Mesa-AZ-85207/8084561_zpid/

1.25 acres, 83x20 detached block garage. Not exactly the middle of Tempe though.

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Lenders will typically require at least 20% equity and liquid cash reserves in some amount (10%). Last quote I got was $126/ft (does not include cost of the lot). My architect also charges $3/ft to design and get you to permit (also not included in the $126/ft).

Thanks for the info. Is that quote for a commercial building or residential?

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Looks like building from the ground up is tricky and expensive. Thinking about either buying a property with a livable house and building a big shop behind it. Then just remodel the house. Not as exciting as a full custom deal but could still be pretty cool.

Either that, or buy a commercial building already built. I'm not sure what kind of issues I'd run into with that yet but I think it might be possible.

Or... just buy a place on the outskirts. http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/718-N-Merrill-Rd-Mesa-AZ-85207/8084561_zpid/

1.25 acres, 83x20 detached block garage. Not exactly the middle of Tempe though.

Remodeling an existing structure will also allow you to work within older, somewhat less stringent building codes. New build (less plans & permit fees) is always cheaper tho. Trying to do residential within commercial zoning would be quite the task. Prepare to attend city council meetings & be a regular fixture at the city building dept office
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Like Jim said, the best money spent is on an existing home on a lot. I would do it myself. I will build a new house on my fathers lot only because of the property being paid off, otherwise forget it.

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Yep I am going to have to do some research. I don't think I necessarily need it to be rezoned residential though, I think it can stay commercial but have living quarters. Like self storage yards or motels that have a place for the owner to live. My boss owns a shop in Mesa that is full commercial, but it has an apartment and office built on to it.

I think commercial property taxes are triple though, so that would be an issue.

Honestly what I want is an old firehouse. Living quarters on half of it, huge garage on the other half. Anyone hears of one of these for sale let me know :)

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Tom is building his house because he has certain wants and needs...and its going to have a monster man cave.

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Yes, as an owner of both, commercial is insane on the property tax

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Remodeling an existing structure will also allow you to work within older, somewhat less stringent building codes. New build (less plans & permit fees) is always cheaper tho.

If the house was half decent, I could just fix up the interior without doing any serious remodel. The house isn't really a huge concern. I'm more interested in the shop and property for now.

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If you need any advice while looking, give me or Jim a call. We'll save you from a headache down the road. Lol

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Awesome, thanks. I'm putting my current house on the market in a couple weeks. Then renting a townhouse while I try to figure this out.

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Remodeling an existing structure will also allow you to work within older, somewhat less stringent building codes.
From my 23 years plus experience as General contractor in California you must adhere to the new building codes and bring up anything that you touch To current codes. Example being if you wanted to change a window. That window has to fit today's building code standards for egress, size, location and efficiency codes. Although I agree with doing a remodel versus new construction in the long run I think you save money on permits and fees and especially on taxes as you can probably avoid claiming the improvements as you do things little by little. As opposed to adding a garage or tearing down a exhisting home on a piece of property. The taxman always wants his share. SLAMMER
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Thanks for the info. I'm leaning towards gradual renovation of an existing house now. Don't think I have the time money or energy to deal with starting from scratch.

Going to look at this place on Friday... NE Mesa by Crismon and University. House needs work and the area is ... rough ... but it's 1.25 acres with 80x23 shop in addition to 2 car garage. The house is like a time capsule. The borders of this first picture are the property lines.

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It's not a heap. It has land and killer he-man areas. I like it!

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That place isn't going to work. Neighborhood is a little too... AJ.

Found a place in Gilbert by Baseline and Lindsay. 1.2 acres, short sale. Just a house on the property, the rest is overgrown weeds and orange trees. Tons of room for future projects though.

Looking at it this week, talked to mortgage guy this morning. Ready to make an offer if it will work.

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I dunno man, that other place has the CMU garage. Your meth could blow up and no one would hear the explosion, just my 2 cents though! :jim:

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Looks like it has irrigation rights?

I don't know, no info about it online. It was listed last night, short sale for $200,000. I scrounged up my down payment and have mortgage pre-approval.... but just googled the address and now it's coming up at $240,000. I get the feeling I wasn't the only one who thought it was a bargain and they had multiple offers today.

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