OT - Custom home Q.

Hi.
Apologies for making my first post on this NG, OT.
But - I'm about to buy some land in Phoenix, AZ, to build a custom home (have a builder build it). Can anyone give me directions/hints/pointers on how to start out on the process, draw up plans, find a builder (do I need my own lawyer etc). I couldn't find an NG more suitable than this, so I hope someone can help :-)
I'm buing 1/3 of an acre in Phoenix (backing onto the North side of South Mountain, for those who know Phoenix) & want to build a traditional SW house (adobe flat roof (maybe), protuding ridge poles etc). But I want to add modern energy/time savers too, like (supplementary) evap cooler & solar-cells on the roof to run the A/C (or help, at least).
I have to build at least 2500 sqaure feet. But as a single 41YO guy, I don't really need all that, so I plan on a few large rooms - there'll probably be a 1000 foot basement on the North side (to reduce the footprint & provide a cool hideaway in the pm.
Hope someone has something that will help............THX..............Dave C.
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Best thing to do is to find a builder that built a house similar to your requirements and who did a good job. And yes you need your own lawyer BEFORE YOU SIGN A CONTRACT. Also do not do business with anyone who insists on a manditory binding arbitration clause or a 3rd party warranty. THe 3rd party warranties are complete rip offs.

my
house
don't
be
a
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Rufio wrote:

I's start with an architect. One whose work you like and who is willing and able to design what you want.
-- dadiOH _____________________________
dadiOH's dandies v3.0... ...a help file of info about MP3s, recording from LP/cassette and tips & tricks on this and that. Get it at http://mysite.verizon.net/xico ____________________________
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and
yup. its pointless to talk to a builder until you have a plan. what are you gonna say to him: i want a house, give me a bid please? and if you really want a custom house, you want what you want. you dont go talk to a car salesman to find out what car you want. he's gonna sell you what he's got. a builder is gonna sell you whats easiest for him to build.
and before you talk to an archetect, id talk to a lawyer.
randy
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I don't think you are O.T. and suggest you also
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my
house
don't
be
a
Welcome neighbor, I live off the Baseline Corridor and love the area.
Start with a flood plan map, from Maricopa county. Then any deed restrictions for the proposed property. A realtor would be a good place to find the land, if you do not have the property already. Then the architect, builder, etc. Do not plan on moving in in 2004, maybe 2005. Friend just finished his new home in Carefree. Construction took 13 months, 5 longer than promised. I know more builders to stay away from than I do to recommend.
If you want a basement plan on extra $30-$40k for the privilege on South Mountain. SM is pretty hard. Blasting permits were canceled more than 20 years ago in the COP, city of phoenix.
Flat roofs always leak, some times it takes a while but they always leak. Have not seen one in 35 years hear that did not leak eventually. I like mission tile roofs, mine has a 40 year guarantee.
If your handy coolers are good. If your not forget them. They are a pain to keep clean and working correctly. They pump humidify into the home as well as dirt. Then the a/c has to remove all that water, Coolers only work when the dew point is blow 40 degrees. So you get 2-3 months a year from them. I am totally a/c now for the first time since moving to Arizona. I will never own another cooler.
Solar hot water is pretty easy and doable. Solar electric for the a/c, well you need to visit APS's, Arizona public service. solar demo site corner of McClintock and University. They have systems that do this. Again you got more money than the royal Saudi family? Last one I looked at cost APS in the neighbor hood of $30k and it was not paying for it self, it worked, but no payback. Check out the web page for APS.
It is less expensive to operate an higher seer properly designed a/c's. Maybe even a dual stage compressor. Mounted on the east side of the house in the shade.
I would recommend a few visits to the local builders and see what they are doing. Highline Groves on 28th street has some basements. They start at $320k last time I heard. Way out of my price range.
There are a ton of architects that will build you an territorial home, what we call them. There are several homes over on 24th street nearer to Dobbins Road.
Only one place that I know of does adobe. That is the San Tan adobe plant. Last time I checked there was a one year waiting period for his products. Pretty independent guy. They make the adobe the traditional way so he only produces brick in the summer months.
Last suggestion no carpet, all tile floors, easy to clean, they are cooler in the summer. And they are not that cold in the winter.
Good luck with the planning of your new home and welcome to the area.
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Have you looked for any good books on the subject? For instance: (Amazon.com product link shortened)
Rusty
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