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Custom Home Builders Vs Production Builders:
What is the difference?

Your new house is not just a building — it’s your home; your fortress! It is a place where you escape from your daily work stress and anxiety, creating lifelong memories with your family.

Since you will most likely spend much time in your home winding down with your friends and loved ones, entertaining guests, and doing your hobbies, you need to make your home a special place that reflects your individual style, fits your lifestyle, and satisfies your unique needs.

When you finally decide to move out of your rented apartment into a home of your own, one of the first and most important decisions you will have to make is whether to purchase an existing home from a production builder or contract a custom home builder to construct your custom home from the ground up.

To prevent complications or ending up with the wrong contractor, you have to take your time to PLAN and decide on the type of builder that is ideal for your project. Fortunately, this custom builder vs production builder comparison will showcase some of the most important differences, benefits, and drawbacks of each type of builder to ensure you make a well-informed decision.

Pros and Cons of Custom Home Building

A custom builder is a design-build contractor who is typically involved in the entire home construction process, from planning, designing, and architecting to construction, interior designing, interior decoration, integrating those finishing touches, and even post-construction services. The main goal of a custom home builder is to give you exactly what you want in all aspects of the project. As the homeowner, you get to interact with the contractor regularly and contribute to any major decision that is to be made.

Let’s explore some of the advantages and disadvantages of custom home construction.


1. Customised Options

Custom home builders start every home from scratch while allowing the homeowner to make their choices when it comes to selections, including appliances, wall and floor coverings, cabinetry, and so on.

Whether you present a house plan you found online or you want to create one yourself, a custom home builder is committed to meeting your demands because to them, each home is unique and should be designed to the homeowner’s specifications and preferences.

2. You Are Not Restricted To An Architect

Although the average custom home builder offers architectural services, they don’t limit you to their in-house architects as you are allowed to choose from other sources. The most important thing for a custom builder is to implement whatever plan you have for your construction project and they can always collaborate with your architect to make that happen.

3. Your Inputs Are Always Welcome

Another advantage of a custom home builder is that your inputs are highly valued. In fact, you are always involved in every key decision in the course of executing the project, from planning and budgeting to the selection of materials and even the actual construction. Collaboration is key in custom home building, so expect to make a couple of inputs along the way. Visiting the construction site and having some level of control over your build is also typical in this type of project. Thus, it’s an excellent choice for those who want to remain in control throughout the process. As always, the ultimate goal of a custom builder is to meet the needs of the homeowner.

4. High-Quality Materials

Unlike production builders that may use lower quality materials to maximize profit, custom home builders stick to quality materials just as you want them and as they meet your budget.

5. Budget Flexibility

The popular idea that custom homes are more expensive is not always true. This is because the word “custom” also reflects your budget. You can customize your budget based on how much you have for the entire project. But that’s not the case in production buildings where you have may have no control over the budget. In fact, you may end up spending much more if you opt to buy an existing home instead of building your own.

6. Personal Expression

In constructing your custom home, you have a choice to make in virtually everything and you can express yourself freely in how you organize your home. For instance, if you are someone that enjoys privacy, or maybe you like wide, open spaces, you can always express those choices when designing and building your custom home.


1. Longer Project Duration

It takes a relatively long time to complete a custom home project. This is especially because each decision they make is subject to the approval of the homeowner. Such red tapes may result in delays in the swift implementation of the project.

2. Too Many Choices To Make

A custom home project can be quite overwhelming for people who just want the keys to their new homes and nothing more. Not everyone wants to pick their own fixtures and colors. Not everyone relishes visiting the construction site from time to time. And not everyone cares to make regular inputs. Some people simply want to receive the keys to their home a few months after communicating their dreams to the contractor. Sadly, that’s not always the case in custom home building.

Pros and Cons of Production Home Building

A production home builder constructs hundreds of buildings in one or more locations using semi-custom or stock plans. Unlike the custom home building where the cost depends on the homeowner’s budget, production builders determine the cost of each building. They simply build for different budget ranges, and while you may find a price that matches your budget, the building might not meet your exact demands like a custom alternative would.


Here are some advantages you enjoy when you work with a production home builder:

  • They offer fixed prices
  • You get the keys to your home faster
  • Production homes are largely affordable
  • You have access to development amenities like parks, walking trails, and even sports courts if you work with large-scale production builders.


Although beneficial in some ways, working with production home builders also poses a few drawbacks:

  • You are typically restricted to existing house plans
  • Your ability to customize is quite limited (that is if you have any chance to do so)
  • Your choices of fixtures are limited
  • You may end up spending more for less quality, efficiency, and functionality.

Final Thoughts

With the advantages and disadvantages discussed in this production builder vs custom builder comparison, it’s obvious that the best option between the two largely depends on individual choices. While most people might prefer to build their own custom homes tailored to lifestyles and personalities, others may prefer to go for a production home that requires less planning, less involvement, and is faster to complete.

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