- What are the steps to build a home?
The Construction Process:
Big Street Construction, Inc offers assistance from selecting the concept of your project through to the completion of a comprehensive plan. We ensure your satisfaction and work hard to understand your vision. We'll start by having several educational and informational meetings well before construction begins. We invite you to see the quality craftsmanship first-hand and are always available to accompany you on a tour of some of our custom built homes. Big Street Construction allows you to enjoy the process of creating a home just for you.
- 1. Site Evaluation
Often the initial client meeting occurs at the site of construction. The site may be a lot that you already own, or are considering to purchase. At this site visit, we walk the property and make recommendations regarding the height, location, orientation and placement of the building. This is a critical part of the building process because it is where the inspiration for your design begins. Following the site visit, we research set-backs, easements, and plot plans for you.
- 2. Design
We pride ourselves on building your project around you; your needs, wants and lifestyle. Beginning with a list of wants and needs, an initial plan design will be developed for your new home. Once a preliminary plan is drawn, we'll sit down with you and thoroughly review the plan to determine what changes need to be made (we refer to this as red-lining). This collaborative effort continues between the customer, and Big Street Construction, Inc until a final blueprint is created. Big Street Construction, Inc can work with your architect or we can design your project ourselves with our state of the art design software.
- 3. Quote
Our client specification meeting is very detailed. Reviewing specific details early in the process helps to eliminate surprises and allows us to quote what our customers want to build. The project is then quoted based on the outlined specifications and reviewed with you. Together we make adjustments to the plan design and pricing to meet budget considerations. We also review the terms of our building contract.
- 4. Pre Construction
With a signed contract, we'll establish a start date and complete a project schedule. This comprehensive project schedule identifies each task and pending decision in the building process, the responsible party and the completion date. Big Street Construction, Inc utilizes an on line scheduling program so you can view your schedule at any time during the construction process.
- 5. Build
We'll be in constant contact throughout the building process. Our team of professionals at Big Street Construction, Inc takes a personal interest to ensure your project is completed to specification within the allotted time period and with strict attention to detail. You will know exactly what and when decisions need to be made, as well as what is happening at your home on any given day. We'll meet regularly to review the progress and you will get to know each of our team members as they work on your home.
At the end of the journey, you will have a magnificent project where new memories can be made for years to come!
- Why build with Big Street Construction?
- 1. Your Kind of Home
We believe in building homes the way they can, and should, be built. From helping renters become homeowners to finding people their second or third homes, we craft stunning, energy-efficient, homes that can save as much as 50% on utility costs. Our new homes are quieter, cleaner, healthier, smarter and safer. We build the homes that people want.
- 2. Energy-Efficient Living.
With our unique building practices, Big Street Construction homes on average, are twice as energy-efficient as a typical home of the same size. With an array of money-saving features, from spray-foam insulation and energy-efficient windows, that cut heating costs by as much as 50%, to ENERGY STAR® appliances that use up to 50% less energy and water, our homes provide energy-cost savings of up to 50%. That’s an average of $50,000 spanning a 30-year mortgage.
- Spray-Foam Insulation.
When it comes to insulating your home, spray-foam insulation is one of the best to seal your home from outside air and moisture intrusion, save on energy costs, and protect your family from dangerous mold, airborne pollutants, and allergens. Spray-foam insulation is quick expanding polyurethane foam that fills internal wall spaces and seals attics, creating an energy-efficient thermal envelope.
- Healthier Living Environment
According to the Department of Energy, as much as 40% of a home’s energy is lost due to air infiltration by way of drafts through wall sockets, attics, windows and doorways. The spray-foam insulation we use in our homes creates a thermal envelope—a superior air barrier that helps to prevent air and moisture infiltration. By minimizing air and moisture infiltration, we help stop the sources of dangerous mold and mildew growth in the home that can cause severe health problems to your family. Spray-foam insulation also provides more thermal resistance with less material than any other type of commercial insulation.
- Increased Energy Savings
In addition to creating a safer living environment, spray-foam insulation, and the resulting thermal envelope, makes for a more comfortable home that is less expensive to heat in the winter and cool in the summer. Some suppliers claim that spray-foam insulation typically insulates as much as 50% better than traditional insulation, which results in your home more easily maintaining a constant temperature throughout the day and night. In fact, a monthly energy bill savings of 30% or more can be achieved with spray-foam insulation when compared to alternative insulations.
- Energy-Efficient Lighting.
Turn a light on in any of our energy-efficient homes, and chances are it’s a CFL or LED bulb. In fact, at least 80% of the bulbs in our homes are CFL or LED. We do this for many reasons.
But when it comes down to it, it’s because they’re simply better bulbs. Keep reading and you’ll see why.
- Triple Pane Low-E2 Windows.
You should be able to enjoy full sunlight and views out your windows while saving money on utility bills and protecting your furnishings and finishes from sun damage. One of the early advancements in energy-efficient windows was Low-E, or low emissivity, which speaks to its ability to radiate low levels of radiant heat. Surpassing the efficiency of Low-E are the independently tested ENERGY STAR Low-E2 windows that we install in our homes today. Low-E2 windows incorporate a dual-pane, UV-resistant window system of protection that allows sunlight in but keeps heat and harmful UV rays out.
- Saving Energy
Advanced technologies such as invisible UV-resistant glass, improved framing materials, better weather stripping, and warm edge spaces all help to greatly reduce unwanted heat coming into or leaving your home.
- Increased Comfort
Low-E2, ENERGY STAR-certified windows help keep homes warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer. More than 70% of the sun’s heat is blocked from coming indoors during the summer, and your home’s interior heat is reflected back indoors during the winter.
- Indoor Protection
Photographs, furniture, flooring and window treatments can easily fade or discolor after repeated exposure to the sun’s harmful UV rays. Low-E2 windows can reduce fading of interior furniture, flooring, window coverings, and paint by up to 75%.
- Reduced Condensation
Advanced frames, glass coatings, spaces and other technologies enable your home’s windows to keep the inner surface of the glass and frame warmer, reducing the potential for interior condensation and water pooling on window sills that can cause mold or paint to crack.
- 3. Five Star Plus and Six Star Construction
Alaskans who build or purchase newly-constructed, energy-efficient homes may be eligible for up to a $10,000 rebate.
- WHAT IS THE PROGRAM?
The Alaska Housing and Financing Corporation (AHFC) New Home Rebate Program, funded by the Alaska State Legislature, provides Alaska homeowners (regardless of income) provides rebates for original homeowners who build or purchase a 5 Star Plus ($7,000 rebate) or 6 Star home ($10,000 rebate).
- AM I ELIGIBLE?
You may be eligible if:
• You are an original homeowner who is building or has built or purchased a newly constructed home.
• The home is your primary residence.
• The home is rated 5 Star Plus or 6 Star.
• Your home does not have previous improvements done through the AHFC Home Energy Rebate program or Weatherization program.
• You have not used the New Home Rebate or Home Energy Rebate Program on a previous home in the last two years.
• The home was completed less than one year ago.
• Multi-family units (up to a fourplex) and condos are eligible.
- HOW ARE RATINGS DETERMINED?
AHFC uses the Home Energy Rating System index, a nationally recognized scoring card for measuring homes’ energy performances, to determine its star ratings. It’s a 100-point system, with points awarded for thermal resistance, air leakage, moisture protection and ventilation. Between 92 and 94.9 points grants homeowners a five-star-plus, and everything above now gets the six star rating.
- PEX Plumbing
- What is it?
PEX, or crosslinked polyethylene, is part of a water supply piping system that delivers hot and cold pressurized water throughout a home or building. With several advantages over metal or rigid plastic pipe systems, PEX is quickly replacing copper pipes as the next advancement and dominant choice for residential plumbing due to its inherent benefits.
- It's Superior?
Unlike copper and iron pipes that can experience corrosion leaks, PEX resists the scale buildup common with copper pipes, and does not pit or corrode when exposed to public water supplies. PEX plumbing doesn’t require soldering either, eliminating the health hazards involved with lead-based solder and acid fluxes.
- It’s More Convenient
Due to its flexible nature and ability to run straight from its water source to an outlet, PEX pipes typically have fewer sharp turns and joint turbulence which can disrupt water pressure. The result is a maintained water pressure to where you want it most, at your faucets, showers and toilets. PEX also allows for quieter water flow without the “hammering” noise often associated with copper piping.
- It Saves Money
PEX plumbing doesn’t transfer heat like copper plumbing does. This helps conserve energy and decrease heat loss by allowing more hot water to reach its destination rather than losing heat and energy during flow. PEX can also turn 90° corners without the need for elbow fittings, and is also much more resistant to freeze breakage than copper or plastic pipes, which reduces opportunity for leaks and expensive service calls.
- Remote Home Management. [OPTIONAL UPGRADE]
Home on the Go
Big Street Construction has partnered with leading home management providers to create an in-home network that allows you to locally and remotely monitor and control your home’s security, energy, and comfort features, such as locks, lights, thermostats, cameras and other appliances all by using the latest wireless technology. Whether you’re on the couch or in another country, your home management system gives you simple remote access to your home so you can:
• Unlock doors in real time, or assign scheduled lock codes for one-time or limited recurring access.
• View wireless camera feeds of your home.
• Trigger lights to turn on when a door is unlocked.
• Adjust heating and cooling of your home.
• Monitor, manage, and receive energy-saving recommendations.
• Turn lights and appliances on or off.
• Receive text and email alerts about temperature changes.
• Double check things you may have forgotten to do, such as lock a door or turn off a light.
- Home Energy Management Thermostat
More than just a temperature regulator, your thermostat serves as the brains to your home management system. While helping control the temperature, ventilation, and humidity of your home, it also connects to the internet and your smart phone or tablet to help you remotely control small appliances such as lights, door locks, and cameras from anywhere you wish.
- Appliance Module
Your home appliance module makes it easy for you to preprogram and instantly operate lamps and other small appliances from a computer, tablet, or smart phone. This plug-in module also lets you add more products to your home management network, and extends the range of control so you can reach more devices in more places.
- Indoor/Outdoor Wireless Camera
Whether you care to check in on the security of your home, babysitters, or even pets, the home indoor and outdoor cameras allow you to record, store, and remotely monitor activities in and around your home. Many of the outdoor cameras also have motion detection and infrared capabilities.
- Home Keypad and Deadbolt
The home energy management system’s door keypad and deadbolt make it very easy for you to know who is coming and going in your home. Common features allow 19 personalized codes, time stamp entry and exit, and the ability to double-check locked doors or grant entry while away.
- What awards and accolades has Big Street Construction received?
● 2003 Big Street Construction, Inc is born
● 2003-Present Big Street Construction has completed over $30,000,000.00 in construction projects
● 2003-2006 Custom home building and remodel projects
● 2006 Interior Alaska Builders Association Parade of Homes - Builder of the Year
● 2007 North Pole Worship Center Church, North Pole, AK – G.C. of $2.2 Million remodel project
● 2008 Interior Alaska Builders Association Parade of Homes - Builder of the Year
● 2008-2011 Fairbanks North Star Borough Planning Commissioner.
● 2009 Front cover of Alaska Home Magazine and featured General Contractor within the issue.
● 2006-Present: Excavation Contractor and General Contractor, Single and Multi-Family Residential Contracting Projects and Light Commercial Contracting, Fire & Flood Restoration Expert, Xactimate Certified Contractor, Lead Abatement and Diesel Fuel Mitigation Expert
● 2010 Interior Alaska Builders Association Parade of Homes – Builder of the Year
● 2010 Featured article in American Builders Quarterly, a national magazine of General Contractors
● 2012-Present Fairbanks Chamber of Commerce Board Member
● 2012-Present North Star Volunteer Fire Department Board President
● 2012 Top 2012 Business Award from Diversitybusiness.com
● 2012 Top 5000 Fastest Growing Companies(#2034 out of 5000) in the US by Inc500.
● 2013 Alaska Journal of Commerce Top Forty Under 40 Recipient.
● 2013 Top 500 Fastest Growing Companies(#498 out of 500)in the US by Inc500.
- Do I build or buy an existing home?
Many people who build a new home do so for a variety of reasons:
After looking an existing homes on the market, they realize that what they want is not available, so building becomes the logical choice. This allows the buyer to choose the style, size, colors and the specialty items they would like.
- Owning vs. Renting
There are plenty of great reasons why owning might be better than renting. Especially when you can own for about the same monthly payment.
Do you feel like owning your own home is just out of reach? Truth is, owning your own home is much more affordable and easier than you might think. You can own a brand-new home with the plan, homesite and customized finishing touches of your choice, for about the same as what you spend on rent.
- You're closer to owning than you think.
Are you a could-be owner stuck in a renter's way of thinking? We'd like to put an end to your thoughts of not being able to own your own home. It's time to believe that owning is truly possible, and can be just as affordable as renting. And, you can own a home that offers everything you want and look forward to having. That's because the cost of living in a Big Street Construction home is significantly less compared to existing homes, or even other new-homes. Impressive? Maybe, depending on how you think about homebuilding. We just tend to think about it differently. We decided to reinvent the way a home can and should be built. From our energy-efficient construction techniques to the high energy efficient features we include in every home, our homes save you money on energy costs month after month, year after year. With every home we build, we create a value far beyond apartment living, and a lower overall cost of living than any other homebuilder.
Unlike cramped apartment living, the spaciousness you'll enjoy in a Big Street Construction home is expansive, much like the advantages of owning vs. renting.
• Build your own equity at about the same cost
• Federal income tax deductions on mortgage interest
• No unexpected rent increases
• Roomier, more comfortable living
• Space for your family to grow
• More stable place to live with a sense of community
• Lower utility bill with our energy-saving features and construction
• Option and decor that match your own personality
• More storage space
• A garage for your vehicle(s)
• The luxury of your own backyard
• Multiple floor plan choices
• It's your rules; you are the landlord
Okay, So Why Buy Now?
You've heard it before — timing is everything. And this might be truer now than it ever has been before. With interest rates still close to the lowest they've been in recent history coupled with plenty of mortgage options available to buyers with good credit, it makes smart financial sense to own a home. From neighborhoods and amenities to design, price and location, you can be choosy about the home you buy and still achieve the dream of becoming a homeowner at price you can afford.
- When is the least expensive time to build?
The cost of construction continues to go up every year, so the phrase “there is no time like the present” certainly holds true. The cost of materials continues to rise every year.
The spring is the most affordable time to begin construction on your new home. This will enable us to have your home completed and have you moved in before the winter months.
- Where do I obtain house plans?
One of the many strengths of working with Big Street Construction is our own in house design team. Our design team uses a state of the art computer design program to transform your dreams into a reality.
We are able to create 3D renderings, construction drawings, and virtual tours of your project to help you visualize it before it is built. All views in your project - Floor Plans, Framing, Electrical, Section Details, Elevations, and Interior and Exterior 3D and 2D renderings are only one click away.
As we draw your plans, the program automatically creates a 3D model and supports full 3D editing. We can design in any view for seamless and simultaneous editing between 2D & 3D. Advanced rendering provides both Photo Realistic and Artistic styles such as Line Drawing and Watercolor. An extensive 3D Library of architectural objects and tools make it easy to detail and accessorize your designs so that styles, finishes and other product-specific design details can be accurately rendered.
We use powerful building and drafting tools to quickly create plans according to standard building practices and make the design process efficient and productive. Automatic and Manual Building tools allow us to create a variety of Roof styles, Stairs, Framing - both stick and truss, Schedules and Materials Lists for Cut, Buy and Estimating, Dimensioning, Cross-Sections, Elevations and CAD tools.
We utilize smart design objects, such as cabinets, to quickly and easily create various styles, shapes and sizes. We have partnered with specific manufacturers (cabinets, appliances, doors, windows, countertops and flooring) so that styles, finishes and other product-specific design details can be accurately drawn and rendered.
Our approach to creating building plans is the easiest and most cost effective way to designing your project.
- How long before my home is built?
After working with Big Street Construction to create a home plan that meets your needs and price range, it is time to begin scheduling your build and locating property. Through the design phase of your project, we will be available to answer any questions that you may have about construction, prices, and work with you to help you decide on a lot that will fit your needs. Lots are not always for sale through the MLS (Multiple Listing Service) but, there are several other ways that we can work with you to help you locate potential properties. When your lot is found, a floor plan will be finalized, selections will be made, and the cost of the building will be agreed upon in a contract.
Your contract may contain several contingencies that will need to be satisfied before beginning construction on your home, such as:
1. The offer may be contingent upon obtaining financing.
2. If your plans are not completed yet, the offer maybe contingent upon you agreeing to the plans and specifications. Your final plans will list all the materials used to build your home, and the allowances that are given to you for things such as lighting fixtures, flooring and landscaping.
3. Upon your final approval, your plans are signed by you and an appraisal is done by an independent appraiser from your lender.
4. The offer may also be contingent upon the successful closing of the lot you have chosen. You would not want to close on the lot until you are sure that your plans and financing are satisfactory to you.
5. If you are building in a subdivision, you will have to meet the requirements of the deed restrictions and architectural approval from the building department.
These contingencies are to insure both you and Big Street Construction will not build your home until we are both satisfied with the cost and terms of the contract. It usually takes 4-6 weeks to remove the contingencies and close on your lot. Once the building permits are obtained construction should start.
After you have signed your plans and specifications, you will select things such as style and color of flooring, cabinets, counter tops, roofing, siding, windows and plumbing fixtures.
- How is the construction of my home scheduled?
We will build your very own website within our website for the construction of your home. You will have complete access of the construction process 24/7 during the entire building process (Please visit: http://bigstreetconstruction.com/client-login/ for a video demo). Your home building website is interactive, you can add to it at any time, and will consist of the following:
- 1. The schedule
a. Phases of construction: who is doing what and when?
b. Important meetings and inspections
c. Due dates for your selections
d. Ability to view your schedule in several different formats from spreadsheets to Gantt schedules.
- 2. Documents
You will have access of all of your construction documents at your fingertips
b. Building Plans
c. Plot plans
d. Any change orders
- 3. Photos
You will have access of all of your construction documents at your fingertips
a. Big Street Construction will photo document all phases of the building of your home for your records and for future buyers if you so choose to sell your home someday.
- 4. Selections
a. The selections that you make for your home will be outlined
- Who will be the subcontractors that will be working on my home?
Big Street Construction uses the same subcontractors on all of our projects. The same electrician, plumber, heating technician, roofer, drywaller, etc. will be working on your project that we have worked with on all of our other projects for several years. Unlike our competition, we do not send our homes out to bid in order to work with the cheapest subcontractors in order to maximize our profits. We have developed an incredible team of subcontractors that enable us to provide you with the highest quality product possible.
- How long before my new home is complete?
Your custom home can usually be built in 4-6 months. There are a few variables that can change the length of time needed to build your home. The first is weather. Digging and pouring your foundation needs to be done in favorable weather. If it rains or snows for several days in a row, this may hold up the excavation process for example. If it is extremely cold and the frost is deep in the ground, construction may wait a few weeks before beginning construction.
Once the actual foundation has been completed, construction can continue year round. Big Street Construction will keep you informed as to the progress of your home through online scheduling and weekly meetings with us so you can plan your move accordingly.
- Should I sell my home first?
There are three alternatives:
1. Your home can be listed on the present market while you are having plans drawn and obtaining financing on your new home. Hopefully during this 4-6 week period you will obtain a satisfactory offer on your present home, and you can start building as soon as your buyers obtain financing and you have a cash offer on your home.
2. If you can qualify for your new home mortgage without selling your present home. You could start construction and hopefully by the time you have completed construction, your present home will be sold. This is normally available to people who have a very small mortgage on their present home, and have 20% down (in savings) so they can afford to start construction.
3. In some cases, some Realtors offers a guaranteed sale on your present home, so you can start construction before your home sells. This guarantee will enable you to obtain financing.
- Which comes first-the lot of the floor plan?
This is a question that varies depending on your needs. If you have a specific style of home or floor plan you want to build, then you need to find a lot that will allow you to build that type of home on it. If you are looking for a certain area to build in and lots may be limited, then we will help you determine what style or styles of homes that will best suit your lot. It’s best to look at lots and floor plans. Once again, Big Street Construction is available to help you decide which lot may best fit your needs and give you a “builder’s perspective” of potential lots.
When looking for a lot for sale, it is in your best interest to have us look at the lot before you write an offer. The lot that you have chosen may need fill or even removal of dirt that would be additional cost to you. Having us inspect the lot will help you in determining the true cost of your lot. If you would like to write an offer on the property and we have not had an opportunity to see it, you should write the offer contingent upon our inspection.
- What should I look for when looking at lots?
The most important thing to look for when looking for a lot is the location. Prices of homes vary depending on the location, and it is important to keep the resale value in mind. When choosing a floor plan it is also important to think of the resale value on the used home market, always think of your home as an investment, and you want to make a wise one. We have a team of trained professionals that can help you create a house plan that will fit your needs and will sell for the most amount if you choose to sell in the future.
When choosing a lot in a certain subdivision, it is important to ask for the deed restrictions that will affect the property. Look for the minimum square footage requirements. This will tell you the size of the smallest ranch, 2-story or multi-level home that can be built in that subdivision.
The deed restrictions for a subdivision may require architectural approval. This is to insure that the house you are building will not affect the subdivision. The developer wants to insure that there are not several of the same houses built in a row which can lower everyone’s property value. This is for the benefit of everyone in the subdivision.
When you are looking for lots, lots in the hills surrounding Fairbanks generally attract buyers first. Unfortunately, they are difficult to find and are generally more expensive. So keep in mind that by buying a less expensive non-view lot, you can afford more “house” for your dollar.
- How do prices vary from builder to builder?
The saying “you get what you pay for” holds very true in new construction. Big Street Construction is not just selling you a home. We are selling you the experience of building your home from the conception to the completion.
The difference with working with Big Street Construction versus any other Builder is the fact that we basically build your home on paper first. Our designing, scheduling, detailing, and estimating process is completely transparent and more comprehensive and detailed than any of our competition. You will know exactly what we are going to build for you and what it is going to cost you.
Receiving bids from several different Builders is confusing and consuming. Unfortunately, most Builders have devised creative ways of pricing their homes and deceptive ways of providing bids. Comparing our estimates with our competition’s estimates is simply comparing apples to oranges.
Our estimates differ from our completion in the following ways:
1. Big Street Construction has NO hidden fees. Our competition will most likely provide you an incomplete and non-detailed estimate of your home that may not include such things as carpeting, painting, countertops, siding, and cost of drafting plans or even any of the associated construction costs a Builder might have to pay in order to build your home. They hide extra cost in their lack of detail in their estimates only to surprise you with change orders in the middle of the construction of your home.
2. Big Street Construction is detailed. Our competition will most likely use cheaper materials to build your home and will allocated less money towards your allowances for making selections. We will identify solid wood trim throughout your home in our estimate while our competition will simply identify “trim” at best and use cheap particle board trim for example.
here can be a price difference in cabinets, flooring, insulation or even workmanship in your home for example. Our primary concern is that you know exactly what we are going to build, how we are going to build it, how long it is going to take to build, and exactly how much it is going to cost. We are not just selling you a home but an experience. We have worked very hard to establish ourselves as a General Contractor with integrity and an impeccable reputation within our community by being transparent, honest, and trustworthy with all of our clients.
- How does a construction mortgage work?
A construction mortgage may seem complicated to those of you who are not familiar with financing, and fortunately your lender will be doing most of the work for you, but here is an explanation of the process.
A construction mortgage is a short term load obtained to finance the construction of our home. It is almost always required where the buyer owns a lot or is purchasing the lot himself. In these cases the buyer need to obtain his end-loan mortgage as well as his construction mortgage. This is usually done at the same time he applies for his end-loan mortgage. Most lenders will take care of both loans. You in fact are hiring the Builder to build your home. You own your home during construction vs. the Builder owning the home. You, with the help of your lender, will pay the Builder for the work done as the house is being built. This is done in the form of a draw.
There are usually 3-6 draws made by the Builder through your lender during construction. The first draw is disbursed when the land has been developed and the foundation has been poured. We will notify you and your lender that a draw is needed and upon inspection of the premises we will be paid for that portion of the construction. A draw is the money which has been paid out of your construction mortgage that has been set aside for the construction of your home. As money is taken out the pay us, you are billed interest monthly for that portion of money used. You only pay interest on the amount that has been paid out. This interest paid during the term of the construction can range (ask your lender, this amount is generally around $600-$900).
When we have completed your home and are paid the last amount of money due, then your construction loan comes to an end. At this point you start your normal mortgage.
If Big Street Construction happens to be the owner of the lot you have chosen to build on then we will obtain the construction financing. This is called turn-key construction. In this case you purchase the home from Big Street Construction when the home is completed. Big Street Construction will own the house and lot during construction and is building it to your specifications based upon the contract you have signed with us.