The Truth About Custom-Built Homes

So you want to go out and build a custom home, and you have a whole lot of great ideas for things to do to the property.

Building your dream home can be a very exciting prospect, but there is one question you should ask yourself before finalizing your design plans with the architect:

“Is this truly going to be my forever home?”

When answering this question be honest with yourself. Do you truly believe you’ll be getting buried in the back yard, or will you find it is time to move into something smaller/bigger/different in 10 years?

If you think there is even an inkling of a chance that your brand new custom-built home will be going onto the open market in your life time, then the design for your home will have to be mindful of its market appeal.

One of the biggest perks to designing your custom home is you can have it built exactly the way you want it; but, you have to be sure if you aren’t going to be living in the home forever, your custom features aren’t so bizarre you accidentally obliterate the market for your home.


Home Design


All too often I walk into custom built homes with a whole lot of very expensive custom features that have added absolutely zero market value to the property, and in some cases have even depreciated the home. The best example of this from recent memory was an addition to a home’s master bedroom, which featured an indoor-hot-tub, and HVAC that had literally just been covered with dirt (this same home included a full bath you entered from the kitchen).


Custom Home



If you do think that you will one day have to find a new buyer for your custom home, and would like to recoup as much of your investment as possible, and even see significant appreciation, I would encourage you to build your home based on the following template:


  • Ranch Style Floor Plan
  • Open concept kitchen to living room
  • Master on the main level
  • 5 Piece master bathroom
  • Laundry on the main level
  • 1+ additional bedroom on the main level
  • Full bath on the main level
  • Fully finished WALK OUT basement
  • 3+ Car garage
  • On a cul-de-sac
  • With a view (where able)


All of these features combined are an illustration of the highest demand home in the luxury market for Colorado Springs (luxury is 2x median home price for any market), and this home will always find itself as a top 3 demand home in any market nationwide.

House Value

The reason the home described consistently finds itself in high demand is because the layout appeals to almost the entirety of any given market.

The ranch style floor plan with main level laundry allows the home to be a consideration for those people who cannot, or do not want to climb stairs.

The additional main level bedroom is appealing to work from home professionals as the space can operate as a home office, and to couples with young children who want their kiddos on the same level.


Home Office


The walkout basement keeps below grade living space from feeling like a dungeon, so the living area can either operate well as a “man-cave”, and is also appealing to parents who are desirous of a place they can store their collection of teenagers.

Finally, the 3+ garage is a must for almost anyone buying in a luxury price point in almost any market. It is often the deciding factor for couples making a choice between two homes, and a smaller garage can often be a deal-breaker for buyers.




Of course, if your custom home is truly going to be your last home, then build it however you want. What do you care how much it sells for after you’ve enjoyed it? But, if you’ll be selling your home at any time in the future, make sure to hand the above list of must-haves to your builder as a starting point, and from there have some fun with it!

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