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Planning

5 Steps to Get Started on Home Planning

Starting your journey to a new home is an exciting time. Get a head start by thinking through the following aspects of building and designing a home before your initial meeting with an HPM Homes expert. With a little work upfront, you'll be better prepared to walk down the path to becoming a homeowner and may even reach your destination sooner.


1. Prequalification

After learning about HPM Homes, many people's first question is, "Can I afford a new home?" Getting prequalified for a construction loan will tell you how much money the bank is willing to offer based on your financial health, which will in turn give you an idea of the HPM Homes model you can afford. Keep in mind that the amount you are prequalified for is not necessarily your budget (and you don’t have to actually borrow as much), but it does give you a feel for the resources you'll have to work with.

 

2. Ensure the design matches your lifestyle

Whether you’re raising children, looking after elderly family members or taking in siblings, think about the activities and physical needs of the people who will be under your new roof. Maybe you add a murphy bed in the office for short-stay guests, a place for homework or piano practice, or wide hallways and doorways to accommodate special needs. If you plan to expand your home at some point, let us know now and we can plan out the design to accommodate future changes.

3. Secure a home lot and envision your yard

If you already own a home lot, please bring along any pertinent details—is it cleared, does it slope in a certain direction, is the ground soft or lava rock, is there foliage you want to save? If you’d like to incorporate a large tree or specific view, let us know, as it will help inform the final location of your home. If you need guidance on choosing a plot of land that fits your lifestyle, we’re happy to help you with that as well. 

Regarding landscaping, think about how you might like to shape your yard and make sure you’ll have time to maintain any projects that require upkeep. If you'd like to leave room for a sizable garden, think about where you might place it in relation to your home. On the flip side, consider the lot features you’ll need to mitigate to bring your landscaping vision to fruition, such as poor drainage, a drop-off or unyielding brush. Don’t worry, you don’t need to answer these questions upfront; we can work with the architect and/or builders for further insights as to the best way to orient your home and landscape the grounds. 

 

4. Plan for enough space

Try to have an idea of how much space you'll need in terms of number of rooms, room dimensions and total square footage. If you're not sure, you can use your current living quarters as a starting point. Ask yourself if the amount and size of bathrooms and bedrooms suits your needs. Factor in how much space your existing (and future) belongings will take up. If you’re bringing specific pieces of furniture with you to the new home, let’s make sure there’s room for them! Feel free to bring along pictures or specifications of any fixtures you own or are planning to purchase, such as freestanding or drop-in tubs, a fireplace, appliances, etc.

 

5. Start dreaming up the design

Think about the spaces you've been in that you really enjoyed. Was it the fixed lighting or use of natural light that caught your eye? The flooring or the paint color? Reviewing your preferences for specific features will help inspire your new home design and the materials used to bring it to life. While we don't require that you have your lighting, plumbing and electricity needs solidified, it never hurts to give them a little thought before our meeting. To see what's possible, visit online resources such as Houzz.com, Pinterest, interior design websites and Instagram.

 


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Keep in mind that you don’t have to have all the answers before you visit with an HPM Homes consultant. Whether you're six months or several years away from owning a home, it's our job to help you pinpoint where you are in your design journey and work with you to bring your new home vision to life!

Maria Gacula

Born and raised on Big Island, Maria went to school for architecture and has extensive experience in kitchen and bath design, sales and planning. As an owner-employee in the HPM family since 2009, she provides support for the HPM Homes drafting and consultant teams by developing planning services and materials packages for new single-family dwellings in Hawaii. She greatly enjoys helping customers go from renters to first-time homeowners, and seeing the transformation that occurs when design sketches become plans, and plans become happy homes.

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