Step-by-Step Guide to How a House is Built

Perhaps you have bought a plot of land and are deciding whether to build your house yourself or have it done by professionals. There is a lot to think about, not least the design of the house and whether you opt to do any of the work yourself, project manage it, or hand over all responsibility to a builder.

New build home for sale

Once you have purchased a suitable plot of land and obtained planning permission for the house you want to build, the land will need to be cleared and utilities installed. These might already be in place, but if not, they will have to be connected to the main systems.

Foundations and Main Structure

The foundations are always laid first, and then the main structure of the property is constructed once the foundation is dry. In the UK, most homes are built using blocks and bricks, but some eco-homes use different materials, such as timber frames or pre-built panels. It all depends on your budget and overall goals for the build. This is also when a damp-proof course is installed, as well as other services like drains and plumbing.

First Fix

The first fix stage is when internal walls and the basics are fitted. This includes a heating system, electrical systems, staircases, windows, etc. Your design will have all the details and schematics so the builder knows exactly where everything is to be installed. There is room for changes to be made at this point, such as if you decide to install triple glazed roof windows instead of double-glazed windows. You need to ensure all windows across the property are taken care of, so that you can maximise your insulation. If you need all flat roof windows, then it will be best to get ones that are built with insulation in mind.

converting the loft

Second Fix

During the second fix stage, walls will be plastered, and electrical installations finished. The builder and their team will fit bathrooms and kitchens, hang doors, fix skirting boards, and finish off things like tiling and floors. At this stage of the process, your house will start to feel like it’s nearing completion and it’s almost ready for the final decoration to take place.

The Finishing Touches

Once the bathroom and kitchen have been installed, floors laid, and second fix completed, you can call in the decorators. Walls are ready to be painted when the plaster has finished drying. It is usually best not to paper freshly plastered walls for at least 12 months, but your builder can advise you on this. This is your opportunity to customise your new home and make it look exactly how you envisioned it at the very beginning of the project.

Exterior Works

The exterior of a home build project is usually the last job on the list. Commercial builders typically finish by turfing a lawn and laying paths and driveways. Some might plant hedges or trees, but this is usually left to the homeowner to do.

Always have a snagging survey carried out before you make the final payment. This will ensure any issues are fixed before the builder packs up and leaves.