Custom Homes

A Hidden Bookcase Door That Works
How Long Does it Take to Build a House?
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How Long Does it Take to Build a House?

Everybody wonders how long it should take to build a house. The answer is simple:... More

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Asheville, North Carolina Market Shows Strong Recovery

Builders in Asheville, North Carolina are back to a healthy level of construction — but the houses are smaller and not so pricey. More

Custom Modular for the Coast
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Custom Modular for the Coast

Modular designers have shown they can provide upscale packages, but are the homes... More

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Fireplaces in Tight Houses

Q: I build custom homes in a northern (heating) climate. My clients want tight, well-insulated homes - we use cellulose and often spray foam - but many also want a wood-burning fireplace. Is it possible to have a traditional hearth in a modern, tightly insulated home? More

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Q&A: Ice Buildup Problem

Q. We built a custom home for a client in west Michigan a couple of years ago, and the home has had problems with ice ever since. It's a 1,450-square-foot ranch with cathedral ceilings and many can lights throughout. We used blown fiberglass insulation in the ceiling assemblies. From the beginning, the can lights (IC-rated) overheated and tripped their thermal-protection breakers. We finally resorted to pulling the insulation away from the housing of the can lights so they TAs a result, the heat from these lights now warms up the roof and has created a horrible ice problem instead. Last fall we even added four pot vents to the back of the roof in addition to the soffit-to-ridge venting. The homeowner called to report that the pot vents have improved the situation but not completely. I drive by this home frequently and see ice buildup there while other homes in the area are ice free. More

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Factory-Built Custom Homes

By working closely with a modular manufacturer, it’s possible to build a custom-quality home faster and less expensively than the site-built variety. A New Jersey builder of solar homes tells how he does it. More

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Profiting From Panelized Construction

A Massachusetts builder explains how he uses factory-built panels to lower costs and speed construction of custom homes and additions. More

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My First Spec House: Lessons Learned

A custom builder tells how he financed and marketed his first spec house, and the lessons he learned for future spec houses. More

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Fast & Accurate Wall Framing

A veteran production framer tells where it pays to take your time, and where to go full speed ahead, in wall layout and framing. More

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