How Much Does It Cost To Build A Linwood Home?
July 28, 2020

Building a custom home is one of the most rewarding projects you can undertake. It gives you the freedom to build your dream lifestyle with your home as the centerpieceThe design you choose becomes a reflection of who you are and what you like to do.  

When building custom, you have the power to make all of the decisions along the way. The home is completely unique to you, unlike anything else you own.  

Custom building is a once in a lifetime experience, and yet most people never get to experience it.  

Why? The process of building custom is less straightforward than simply purchasing an existing home because there are many different moving pieces. The biggest assumption in custom construction is that it is going to cost too much. This misconception holds many people back. 

And it just isn’t true!  

In this post, we are going to break things down and walk you through the five major factors to focus on which contribute to the overall cost of a custom home. We will also discuss some of the pitfalls you should avoid when estimating costs. 

First off, different companies have various methods of calculating cost, and some are more accurate than othersSo, let’s start with ‘How much does a Linwood home cost?’ 

This is the age-old question. It is a natural starting point for anyone looking to get more information on building. 

Now if you ask anyone in the building industry, you are going to get some version of these answers:  

“It depends…” 

“What are you looking to build?” 


“The price per square foot is a range of ____”. 

…And frankly, none of these really answer the question that you are looking for.  

These vague answers aren’t because people are trying to hide the costs of building from you, or that they are trying to give you unhelpful information. The reality of custom construction is that it is difficult to give a meaningful dollar figure. This is because It is your choices that increase or decrease the cost of building. 

I’m going to go over an obvious example:

small custom home cost
large custom home cost

These are the smallest and the biggest projects that Linwood has done. It is instantly clear that they will cost substantially different amounts. And almost everyone can tell that one reason for price difference is due to size. The bunkhouse on the left is 224 sq.ft. The community center on the right is 45,000 sq.ft

Others may point out the height of the ceilings and the amount and size of the windows as another factor. These also have an impact on the total price.  

Now let’s look into a more realistic comparison:  

red leaves by Linwood homes
antler trail by linwood homes

These are both very popular models that are in the same size range and style. However, their individual costs can vary substantially.  

An exact price is created from having every single line item accounted for in a total project budget.  

These line items come down to your choices. And in construction you make a lot of them. Some are big, most are small but all of them will contribute to the total cost to build. We have a rough way to calculate your budget before getting started: 

Linwood Homes Cost

This is not an exact science, but this framework looks to give you a realistic cost that you can use to estimate how much it costs to build a complete home. Each of the factors are broken down into further small cost items, but it is easier to look high level to start, and then begin to go deeper into each cost category.  

So let’s dive in and learn about the different cost factors involved in custom home building.  Our ‘Total Project Budget’ is broken down to 5 key factors. 

1. Land Purchase Price

Property is the first aspect to consider when planning your project budget. When you begin looking to for the right lot, typically a realtor is going to help you go through the purchase process. You can also find lots on a major listing site, or by looking in a local area.  

The cost of your property depends on a variety of factors driven by the local market. Standard demand and supply are going to affect the cost of the lot you are looking to purchase.  

Naturally, if you are looking in a very popular area, the cost is going to reflect that popularity. If you are looking for something remote, you may be able to get a deal.. although not all deals end up being the deal you originally thought. You still have to look at site development costs.  

Many people looking to build see buying land as a different type of cost than that related to construction. However, the lot is a major factor in determining your final home. The amount you spend here determines what is left to actually spend on the build. You don’t want to buy a lot that is going to end up blowing the rest of your construction budget in site development costs. 

2. Site Development Costs

All new projects require a certain amount of site preparation and service work to create a viable area for installing the foundations of your home. These costs are notorious for blowing people’s budgetsand in our industry, we have seen these situations many times. Clients fall in love with a certain view or a gentle creek running through the property, only to discover after the purchase that there is rock blasting required to start on foundations, or the building envelope is far too small for the home they are looking to build.  

This can happen when you purchase a lot without understanding the necessary steps to get it ready for construction.  

Site development can be broken into two different categories: Basic site costs and situational site costs.  

Basic Site Costs 

Basic site costs apply to every lot and the are necessary to get your lot ready for construction. These costs include property surveying, site clearance, and connection to water, power and local sewage systems. If you are buying a developed lot, or one in a city, it is likely that this work will have been completed and will have been included in the cost of your lot’s purchase price.  

Situational Site Costs 

Situational site costs are more complex. These costs depend on the individual lot and can include demolition, geotechnical work, and rock blasting. If you are on a rural lot, you will also possibly need to install a septic and well system for the home.  

Depending on the lot, the range of these costs can vary dramatically. Many people are shocked after buying a ‘steal of a deal’ lot, only to find out that the site development costs are going to be prohibitive.  

We include these costs right up-front in our planning process. It is dangerous and unproductive not to. If you don’t factor them in, you could end up planning on a project that is going to be over-budget before you’ve even begun to pour the foundations.  

This doesn’t mean that site development is always going to ruin budgets, but it is essential to know before you begin looking at designs. 

3. Design and Materials

Linwood offers a combined design and material package to make construction simpler. We act as both the architect and the lumber yard, all under one roofOur gallery includes 500+ different designs that can all be customized to suit individual budgets and tastes.  

Each home package includes detailed construction drawings, and all the material required to build the structure as well as the weather-tight exterior finishing of the homeWe have combined design and materials into one factor because we believe it makes more sense to offer them together. Choosing a design and material package gives you much more cost certainty, and control over the budget. It also makes the build process faster.  

 Whereas, traditionally the design costs would be all the fees associated with hiring an architect, engineering and creating permit plans. The materials would likely be costs included in a builder’s quote. This leaves room for uncertainty and the potential to go over budget.  

The Linwood design and material package is designed for fast, efficient construction, and it is customized to your exact requirements. Still, there are several different factors that will affect the design and material costs, these include: levels of customization, size and complexity, and material selection.  

Levels of Customization: 


You can select one of our existing designs. Linwood offers many versions of popular homes that are available to suit different types of sites. When you choose a standard design, you have a faster turnaround time on detailed construction drawings and delivery.  

This saves you money as the home is all ready to go and requires limited time in drafting for changes.  


You can customize any of our plans and modify them to your needs. These changes can range from size to exterior materials and to site conditions. Depending on the changes that you are making, your price will reflect the increase or decrease of required materials.  


You can create a fully custom design, a home completely unique to your vision. Both the interior floorplan and exterior style is up to you! 

Size and Complexity 

Both size and complexity play a role in the cost of your design and materials. The larger you build, the more you increase the cost; however, calculating the cost of a home by the simple cost per square foot equation is problematic.  

This is because there are so many different ways to measure the total square footage. Simple cost per square foot quotes are often misleading as they are not unified in the construction industry. The cost per square foot price of the Linwood material package alone will be significantly lower than the total cost to build the home when you include interior finishing, site improvement costs, and construction.  

There are also hidden variables within the square footage calculation which can dramatically increase or decrease the cost. Be wary of those that give simple cost per square foot quotes. Your design, your property, and your interior finishing choices all play a role in the total cost, especially when building a custom home. 

Choice of Materials

Lastly, the quality of your materials will affect the cost of your project. Linwood uses premium lumber and you as a homeowner can choose upgrades to add to your project.  

From siding options to windows, you’re able to make the call. Some products are more expensive than others, and popular package upgrades include wood ceiling liner, decorative beams, porches, decks and railings.  

4. Construction

The next major factor is the cost of construction. Similar to the land purchase, this is heavily impacted by the local market and how busy crews are. You can expect your costs to jump in a busy city or in very remote locations where there are only a few contractors available.  

In this case, you have some options to look at. One way to keep costs down is to target certain times of the year. While spring and summer are always busy for framing, you can actually schedule your build to be at ‘lock-up’ going into the winter (Lock-up is the stage at which the exterior of the home is complete, but the inside is just stud walls). Because foundations and the exterior are complete, trades are able to work inside over the winter.  

This will typically give you a discount as trades are cheaper in the less busy, winter months.  

Another thing to consider is the level of prefabrication. Our package comes with the option of panelized walls. Having the walls panelized saves time during framing and makes the structure go up much faster. Some local crews have the time to stick build, but in areas tight on labor, panelization is an effective option.  

The last factor to consider in construction is actually your own involvement. There are three options of homeowner involvement to consider: 

No Involvement – you are hiring a General Contractor 

Acting as the GC – you are taking over the project and hiring the individual sub-trades 

Sweat Equity – you are going to do some of the work yourself 


Many people are not familiar with construction or do not have the time to act as the general contractor for their project, but some people are really motivated to build the home themselves, which can also keep costs down.   

For those looking to get the most out of their budget, acting as the General Contractor is a really good way to go. On average, GCs charge 15 to 20% of the entire project, which can be put right back in your pocket if you take it on.  

Through our network, we’re able to connect you with a good framing crew to install our package. From there, most people feel confident hiring the trades needed in interior finishing as the process is similar to that of home renovationsSome even take these last steps on themselvestaking on little steps like painting, grouting bathrooms, and installing light fixtures is an excellent way to keep the final costs down.  

5. Interior Finishing

The last major factor in determining build cost is your interior finishing. Interior finishing is the place where the home truly becomes unique to you. But it is also a cost factor that is hard to generalize because people’s tastes vary so widely.  

To use a specific example, someone who loves to cook and entertain may think it is worth it to add a top of the line stove/oven range. The cost justifies the enjoyment they receive from cooking.  

An average stove/oven range comes in at between $800 – $1500. A top of the line item comes in at a cost of over $7500 and can go all the way up to $12,500. This is a difference of over $6,000 on just one line item!…and typically a top of the line range also means other top of the line appliances. 

In this example, the interior finishing costs shot up because an individual wanted top of the line products. And the kitchen is not the only area of the home where this can happen… It is one of the main reasons cost per square foot are so inaccurate. The cost of that top-line kitchen increased the square foot price substantially but didn’t actually mean the home was more expensive to build.

What we have done at Linwood to estimate interior finishing, is to give ranges based on the quality level of interior finishing. There is a minimum amount you can finish a home, assuming the entry-level quality of finishing items. The high range can vary more, but ultimately there is a range that people tend to stay within.  

When beginning to consider building, it is important to understand what quality of finishing you will want to have. For younger families, interior finishing items can be upgraded with time.  


The question of “How much does it cost to build” is impossible to answer without more information.  

Getting an accurate cost is dependent on 5 major factors. These factors make up your ‘Total Project Budget’. 

  1. Land Purchase  
  2. Site Development 
  3. Design and Material 
  4. Construction Labor 
  5. Interior Finishing  

Each of these factors will ultimately depend on the choices you make along the process of building your dream home.  

To get a reliable total project cost, you need to explore each of these factors, in more detail.  

Linwood uses this methodology on every project to ensure that we are always designing the home to meet your Total Project Budget. We’ll help you figure out “how much your cost home will cost”.  

Contact Linwood Homes 

Building a home is one the most rewarding experiences, however, to get a realistic cost estimate, you have to understand the 5 major factors of a Total Project Budget.  

By this point, you should have a better idea of what to consider in building your Total Project Budget. The cost to build your custom home will depend on your lot, the home you are looking to build, construction, and your choices of interior finishing.  

There are many ways to save along the way and our team will guide you through the process to ensure you get the home you want, within your budget. We can help you navigate any design route to plan your dream home.  

Ready to Get Started?

Our design consultants are ready to work with you and create your dream home. Schedule a consultation or give us a call.

Was this post helpful?

Start Your Project With Linwood Homes

If you are interested in designing your dream home, we are just a phone call away. Connect with our team in a free consultation to discuss your project needs and goals. We are excited to work with you and look forward to hearing from you soon. Contact us or call 1-888-546-9663 to get started. You can also join our community on social media, follow Linwood Homes on Facebook and Instagram to see project updates, Q&A sessions and more.

Was this article helpful?

Was this post helpful?


"*" indicates required fields

Sign up to our newsletter and never miss a Linwood blog post.

Related Articles

Building Dreams