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If you have ever dreamed of building a custom home, you may feel unsure about the steps to make such a large project happen. At Archius Design we want to demystify the process and support you in creating your dream home! Here are the phases you can expect if you choose to build a custom home:


Building a custom home is different from remodeling or adding to an existing home. It is a home that will be uniquely yours, so it is important to know how you will use the space and what features are important to you. Take time to think and talk through every detail with the members of your household. What is most important to you and your family?

We recommend making a list of non-negotiable features as well as desired features. During this time, save lots of images, sketch out ideas, and talk with other people you may know who have been through this process.

Save your favorite home design ideas in Pinterest.

The more you identify what you want in your custom home, the easier it will be for your future team (Architect, Interior Designer, Contractor, etc.) to make it a reality.

During this preparation phase, it is important to gain a realistic perspective on the timeline and budget. These vary widely by region and year; however, there are some consistent things you can expect. Your timeline begins with preparation as we have talked about above.

Once you have determined your needs for your custom home you can expect to go through feasibility, design, permits, finish selection, construction, and closeout phases (we will define these further below).

Custom home project phases

There will be overlap in these phases, but overall, you can expect 1-2 years from start to finish depending on local variables.

When planning your budget, it helps to understand that Project Budget is different from Construction Budget. Though the bulk of the budget may be spent on construction, there will also be costs for property, site work, an architect, structural engineers, permits, interior finishes, and landscaping.

Gathering quotes and information on each of these categories will ensure you have a more accurate understanding of cost than simply speaking to a contractor.


The feasibility stage is all about looking at your dream list and budget, plus local codes, and setbacks to discover what is possible for your project. If you have not already, this is the phase to identify and purchase a property.

Obtaining a property survey is vital for determining property lines, setbacks, topography, and more. This will help define what sitework needs to take place before construction can begin.

You will also need to hire an architect during this phase (read more about why this is so important here).

Your architect will use all available information about your property, your list of desired features and your saved inspiration to create 2-3 design layout options.

Design layout options, design choices
Design layout options

As you review and finalize your design, bringing in a contractor will give you valuable information and help to define expected costs.

Once your plan sets are finalized, your architect can submit them for permitting. This can take some time and is an ideal time to work with your architect to hire a contractor, landscape designer, and interior designer. Together, this team will work with you to make your dream home a reality!


Your architect or contractor may provide interior design services, or you may hire an interior designer on your own. Either way, your designer will take your dream list and inspiration images and help you select specific finishes to create the finished look you want.

Finishes Selection in progress with Archius Design, design board, interior design
Finishes Selections in progress with Archius Design

Over the course of this phase, there will be many revisions and decisions as you select hard finishes like flooring, tile, cabinetry, lighting, and soft finishes like furniture, artwork, and accessories.

All work together to give your finished home the desired look and feel.


After all this behind-the-scenes work, your home construction begins! This phase is both exciting and stressful as every project comes with unexpected challenges and setbacks. A weekly site meeting with your contractor and necessary consultants will help to keep everyone informed and on the same page. Expect to encounter decision fatigue. You will already have made so many decisions by this point, but there will still be a constant stream of questions. An architect, landscaper, and interior design team is invaluable in helping you think through decisions with all the information. They should have a good understanding of your vision and help you with making decisions.

Custom home in the beginning of construction phase
Custom home in the beginning of construction phase


At last, your dream is becoming a reality. Closing out the project will include final walkthroughs with the contractor to ensure everything is finished properly, installation of soft finishes, final payments to the parties involved, and finally, moving into your new home!

 Pacific Northwest style home, contemporary, modern home, cedar exterior
Dream custom home!

Though building a custom home is a lot of work, nothing rivals the feeling of creating your dream home. At Archius Design, our goal is to make your dream a reality. We pride ourselves on walking with our clients from preparation through to closeout. We provide interior design services and a valuable connection with industry consultants to support your project.

To learn more and design your custom home: CONTACT US at 425.900.8210 or book your consultation.



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