Building a custom house is a dream for many people. However, it can also be a very stressful and complicated process. If you aren’t organized, you’ll quickly feel overwhelmed and defeated. What you need is a plan!
6 Simple Steps for Staying Organized
Building a house might seem simple on paper, but it’s one of those things that never goes perfectly according to plan. There are always hiccups, complications, and changes that have to be made along the way. It’s just part of the process. On top of that, you have thousands of ideas swirling around in your head. Between logistical concerns, budgetary requirements, and creative design ideas, there’s a lot to juggle. Proper organization is the glue that holds everything together.
As you think about staying organized during the home building process, here are a few simple recommendations:
1. Keep a Folder or Journal
Most of this process is going to take place online. However, there will always be random paper files and communication. Keep a folder or binder handy and stick all of this information in it. Then whenever you need to go back and access something, you’ll have it in one place. Likewise, you should have a physical journal or notebook that you can carry around with you and jot down thoughts, questions, or random to-do list items throughout the day.
2. Develop a House-Specific Email Address
There will be lenders, builders, vendors, contractors, designers, and dozens of different people and companies involved in your build. If you give everyone your personal email address, be prepared to be overwhelmed with a deluge of information. Instead, create a house-specific email address and direct all communication there. Not only does this keep everything organized, but it also prevents your home build from becoming a major distraction in other areas of your life (such as your job).
3. Use a Cloud Backup Solution
Losing files during a home build can be a financial and logistical nightmare. Never rely on a physical device or hard drive to store your documents. All it takes is a hard drive crash or lost/stolen device and things can get dicey in a heartbeat.
There’s no better way to securely store all of your home building files and records than on the cloud. More specifically, you need a cloud backup solution that ensures you always have access to your most important files regardless of when or where you are. Plus, with advanced security features, you never have to worry about someone gaining unauthorized access to your confidential information.
4. Create a Pinterest Board
If you’re in the early stages of building a house (or even if you’re just dreaming about it), Pinterest is a great place to visually organize ideas so that you can show them to your design/build team.
Another option is to use the Evernote plugin/app to store relevant information in “notebooks.” The Chrome plugin makes it easy to save and organize links, articles, images, videos, screenshots, and any other information you run across online. You can either create one big notebook for the entire build, or create a collection of specific notebooks for things like construction, design, landscaping, etc.
5. Track Receipts With an Expense Tool
Keeping meticulous financial records is very important. Whether you’re building with cash, financing with a builder, or using a construction loan, careful records will ensure you don’t run into any issues related to expenditures, compensation, or taxes.
The easiest way to track expenses is with an expense tool like Expensify. This makes the process as easy as taking a picture of the receipt and organizing it into the proper folders.
6. Choose One “Point” Person
If you’re married and/or building a house with a partner, it’s imperative that you select one “point person.” In other words, you need one individual who is tasked with communicating with the builder and relaying information back and forth. This prevents miscommunication and confusion. It also helps keep the builder sane by cutting down on redundant communication. Trust us – everyone will be happier.
Keep Your Home Build on Track
There’s no way to guarantee your home build will be smooth and problem-free. However, by staying organized, you can reduce stress and prevent overwhelm. In doing so, you’ll find the home building process to be much more enjoyable.