Your Building Blog for the Rochester Area

The Home Site Selection Process—How Gerber Can Help!

Posted by John Graziose on Sat, Aug 5, 2017 @ 11:08 AM

Gerber-Homes-Home-Site-Selection-ProcessYou can’t be too careful when choosing the right homesite for your new Rochester-area home. Where you choose to live can be every bit as important as the floor plan you choose for your home. There are two major factors that you should consider when choosing a home site. One is the community you'll be living in, and the other is the physical condition of the lot itself. Let's look briefly at both.

Your Prospective Community

Some homeowners want to build in a place that offers great views or gives them easy access to water. That could mean looking for a site nearer to Lake Ontario—or down closer to the Finger Lakes area. Some people want easy access to Rochester for work or other activities.

For many homeowners, however,  the location they choose isn’t merely about convenience to shopping or an easy commute to work. They want to build a home in a place where they can also build community and feel comfortable with the residents living around them. The good news is that Gerber offers opportunities in a wide range of locations around the Rochester area.

The Physical Characteristics of Your Potential Lot

After giving it some consideration, most prospective homeowners don’t have that much trouble picking a community. But when it comes to selecting the specific lot they plan to build on, they can find themselves facing things they may not be prepared to deal with.

That's because the physical characteristics of your potential lot can have a huge impact on the kind of house you can build—and even the ultimate cost of building your home. For instance, when you're considering lots, you may find one that is more reasonably priced than other lots. It may look great to you and fit your budget better, but is it the right lot?

Often there are things about a lot that aren’t readily observable to the untrained eye. And sometimes it’s those unseen characteristics that can end up costing you time and money when you build your home. If that inexpensive lot you have your eye on requires a lot of grading to get it ready to build on that’s going to cost you money. What looked like a deal can actually end up costing your more!

There are other things to consider. How easy is it to access the utilities that you’ll need? Are there building or zoning restrictions that you’re not aware of? All of those things can significantly impact the desirability and affordability of a home site you’re considering.

That’s where Gerber can help. We’ll work with you to find the right lot for your family’s home—whether it’s in one of our own developments or a piece of property you own. Or we can help you find property elsewhere and determine what it’s going to cost you to build on that site.  Click here for a short and helpful video in which I highlight our process for helping you select the site that will best suit your needs and budget.


Topics: Selecting a Home Site, Home Building Tips

Choosing the Right Builder for Your Rochester-Area Custom Home

Posted by John Graziose on Wed, Oct 15, 2014 @ 07:10 AM

244 Woodsview Dr-1The Finger Lakes Region is a great place to live. On top of that you have a wide variety of great floor plans from which you can choose—whether you’re looking for an estate-sized home or a smaller single story home. Or you can come up with your own unique floor plan. Turning those plans into the home of your dreams, however, doesn’t just happen. That’s why it’s so important to choose the right builder for your Rochester-area home.

How do you go about doing that? What should you look for in a builder? On the surface, builders may kind of look alike. But here are a few things you should consider before making your decision.

  • Experience: This may be your first experience building a custom home, but you probably don’t want it to be the first time your builder has done it. Some builders are great at cranking out homes as long as they’re all the same. Building a custom home is different. It requires a unique kind of expertise—and the ability to take a plan and make it fit the exact desires and needs of a homeowner.
  • A Track Record: Just because someone has built a home, doesn’t make him or her a great homebuilder. The real test is to check with the homeowners who live in those homes. Are they delighted with the custom homes they have? Is the quality what they expected (or even better)? And what was the building experience like for them?
  • Location: Will your builder build where you want to live? Some builders will only construct homes on their own developments. And that’s fine if their parcel of property is where you really want to live. But if you’re building a custom home, you may want more choices about the community that you’re going to be part of.
  • Options: Some builders only offer a few options when it comes to the styles of homes they build. But when you’re talking about building a custom home, a “one-size-fits-all” approach just doesn’t work. You want to have a number of design options from which to choose. 
  • A Commitment to the Community:  A good builder doesn’t just build a home and walk away. You probably plan to be in your home for a long time and you want your builder to be around to stand behind his work.

With three generations of family working together the Gerbers are lifetime area residents of the greater Rochester community. In our more than 50 years of experience, we’ve built more than 3000 homes—and we’ll be here to stand behind them. We’d love to be your choice to build your dream home!

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Topics: Custom homes, Home Building Tips

Maintaining Acreage Around Your Rochester-Area Home

Posted by John Graziose on Sat, Nov 30, 2013 @ 09:11 AM

Maintaining acreage around your Rochester area homeThere’s an area that a lot of homeowners tend to overlook when they consider building a custom home: the property that their new home will sit on. It’s understandable. After all, their thoughts are often consumed with floor plans, finish ideas, building material choices and finances. All of that’s important, but you can’t ignore the acreage your new home will be built on.

First of all, you’ll want to consider the construction implications.

  • What’s the drainage like?
  • How is the access to existing roads?
  • Are there fences in the area to work around?
  • What about underground pipes and access to utilities?
  • Is the property buildable “as is” or will you need to do a lot of grading before you can begin?
  • What’s the vegetation in the surrounding area like?
  • Will it allow for the kind of landscaping you want to do?
  • Will the property you’re considering accommodate the kind of home you’re planning to build?

If you’re looking for help locating property, click here for a free search of lots and land—we might have what you’re looking for in Ontario, Huron, Sodus, Marion, Farmington…the list goes on!

We’ve found that even after homeowners select their property, they still have questions about what to do with the area surrounding their home. One of the most common questions we hear is, “How much should I budget for landscaping?”

The exact amount, of course is up to you, and it will vary according to what you want to do. A general rule of thumb is to allow between 10 and 20 percent of the home’s value for landscaping. That’s a fairly wide range, but there’s a reason for it. Some homeowners want to create beautiful gardens with a lot of stonework and paths. That kind of landscaping can cost a bit more. Others are more interested in having a yard with lots of room for children to play.

Either way, it’s worth it to spend some significant time (and some money) planning what your property will look like. There’s more to good landscaping than simply planting a few trees and rolling out some sod. You may want to enlist the help of a professional landscaper. They’re familiar with what trees and shrubs will flourish in the area. And they have the expertise to be able to advise you with regard to how things will look in 10 or 15 years—something too many homeowners fail to take into consideration when they create their yards.

If you’re building a custom home, you build it to last. You’ll want to make sure that the property you build on continues to showcase your dream home—both now, and for years to come.


Topics: Rochester NY, Selecting a Home Site, Home Building Tips