What is the saying? “the best laid plans of mice and men often go awry”?  When building a fully custom home, you have to be prepared for all sorts of changes to your plans – whether it be changing the roof line to accommodate that extra window, or even the direction the building faces because of the shape of your land. In this instance, the surveys and soil tests had been completed, the architect had drawn out the floor plan to meet their requests, created an exterior rendering that was approved, the builder provided the budget, and my clients took time to whittle away what they could live without in order to get the overall price of the home into a range they were comfortable with.

The next step was an appraisal so they could confirm their financing. Sounds simple right? Get ready for that wrench in those plans. The appraiser they got was from Galveston and generally appraises only existing single family homes. A far cry from a fully custom home being built in the DFW Metroplex, right? So what happens? His appraisal was completed, and was a far cry UNDER the budget my clients were working with.

Original Floor Plan

Original Floor Plan

Let me give you an example of why this appraiser was not the right solution for the job:

He did not feel that the budget of almost $20K in kitchen appliances was appropriate for this house. Hello? Have you looked for new appliances recently? A mid-sized, built in Kitchen Aid refrigerator (we’re not even talking Jenn-Air, Wolf, or Viking brand) is almost $10K alone! That leaves $10K for a dishwasher, double oven, 36″ gas cooktop & hood, warming drawer, garbage disposal, and a microwave drawer, and you are easily at $20K. C’mon. My clients are planning on this house being their last house – they are not wanting to put “scratch & dent” appliances in.

So. What to do? They could bring money to the table and pay the delta between what the house is appraised for (essentially what the bank will lend them) and what the actual costs would be.  Or they could opt for an entirely different solution such as purchasing an existing home and renovating,

What would you do? Leave me a comment below – I would love to hear your ideas!