Home Builder Brevard County: Residential Construction Process Part Three

So far in the series, we’ve completed everything up through dry-in. This means the underlayment is on the roof, the windows are installed, and the exterior doors are in place. What’s next?

Luxury Home Builders Brevard County: Mechanical, Electrical, and Plumbing Rough-Ins

Our mechanical, electrical, and plumbing contractors perform their rough-ins, or as the plumbers call it, “top-outs.” We start with HVAC, as they need the house to themselves, and will take up the entirety of the space for a single day. Before the electricians start their rough, they’ll perform a walkthrough with the respective homeowner. As we’re a custom home builder, we allow our buyers to alter their electrical plans as they wish. Adding outlets, adjusting heights, or selecting lighting locations are just part of the customization process. The plumbers only need two to three days in the house, while the electricians will be working inside for a week, and both trades can work together simultaneously. Towards the end of the electrician’s schedule, our low voltage contractor arrives. Low voltage encompasses a variety of things, but their work here is primarily concerned with the security and media systems. Just like the electrical work, low voltage arranges a walkthrough with the homeowner to create an individualized plan.

Home Builder Brevard County: Inspections and Insulation Installation

Once the MEP roughs are wrapped up, we go through a few inspections with the local governing agency, either the City of Melbourne or Brevard County for our current projects, before installing our batt insulation. Unless the homeowner opts for sound proofing, the batts exclusively go in the garage partition. Occasionally, a homeowner may choose Icynene spray foam insulation, which is a more effective, but more expensive insulator than the standard batts and blown-in fiberglass alternative. You’ll find Icynene in many ultra-custom houses, like those on Lansing Island, in Satellite Beach.

Luxury Home Builders Brevard County: Drywall Process

After insulation, we move onto drywall. The entirety of the drywall process takes two to three weeks, and has several phases. Drywall hangers arrive shortly after the material delivery, and can hang the drywall in an average sized house, like those in Laguna Village, in roughly three days. Their drywall superintendent will review their work, and notify us when we’re ready for the inspector’s screw inspection. The corner bead specialist is next in the house, and he fastens the vinyl beads onto the drywall. Our homeowners often select either a rounded-corner or square corner bead. Next, the finishers arrive to tape the joints, apply two coats of joint compound, and sand everything down for a smooth finish throughout the house. Lastly, the texture rig and crew spray the texture on the interior walls and ceilings, letting it dry before cleaning it up the following day. The most common texture combination in our houses is an “orange peel” texture on the walls, and a “knock-down” texture on the ceilings. Meanwhile on the exterior, the stucco crew are working on the block walls, applying bonding agent, stucco, and texture to the house.

Home Builder Brevard County: Painting Preparation

If timed properly, the stucco and interior walls will be ready for paint at the same time, minimizing trips for our painters. On the inside, we have our painters apply the primer to the walls, but completely paint the ceilings. During construction, with trades moving in and out of the house, the walls are likely to be scuffed and damaged. We’ll wait until the end of the project before doing a final coat of paint.

Luxury Home Builders Brevard County: Tile Installation

Our garage doors are installed after the painters leave, allowing our tile installers to lock up their tools and our material. The tile crew will work inside the house, installing both the floor tile and wall tile, for several weeks. An average house in Laguna Village may require three weeks for tile alone. Larger houses with more tile, like those in our other Melbourne neighborhood, Casa Bella, or completely custom home, may require more than a month. As our buyers often select larger tile, it’s necessary to install the floors before moving onto trim carpentry. Otherwise, the tile installers would have a difficult time working around doors, and slipping the tile under the baseboard.

Home Builder Brevard County: Cabinet and Countertop Installation

When the tile floor is complete, we bring in the cabinets. The cabinets arrive in large boxes, are set inside, and then put together like a puzzle. Our installers often work alone, hanging the cabinets, adjusting drawers, adding trim, and putting on the corresponding hardware. This spans between three days to a week. Afterwards, the cabinets are templated for their countertops using a laser to scan the appropriate surfaces. Our countertop manufacturer typically cuts the material within a week, and sends it back out for install shortly after.

Luxury Home Builders Brevard County: Trim Carpentry

As a custom builder, we pride ourselves on the grade of finishes throughout the house. The craftsmanship of the trim is a good indicator of a project’s overall quality. Consequently, our trim carpenter is scheduled after the tile crew leaves and the cabinets are done. He’ll hang the interior doors, before moving on to the casing, crown molding, and baseboard. Depending on the trim carpenter, this can take between a week to two weeks.

Home Builder Brevard County: MEP Trims

Now, we’re nearing the end, and the MEPs return once more for their trims. HVAC installs the air handler and condenser, puts in the thermostat, and attaches the appropriate trim pieces to the supply and returns. Plumbers install both the toilets and plumbing fixtures, before connecting the water to the house. Electricians put in their switches, lighting, fans, and anything else required to pass our pre-power inspection. At the same time, the glass contractor hangs the mirrors and installs our glass enclosures.

Luxury Home Builders Brevard County: Final Steps Before Completion

Once the inspector passes our pre-power, we wait on Florida Power and Light to provide electricity and a meter. Sometimes, this only takes a week, but can stretch to beyond three weeks if there’s a complication. In the meantime, our painters start to putty nail holes and prepare the trim to be sprayed. Ideally, the power is turned on while they’re working. If so, the drywallers can briefly return for drywall punch, where they’ll patch and texture any blemishes on the walls. Finally, the walls are ready to receive the final coat of paint.

Home Builder Brevard County: Exterior Work

Since the completion of MEP trims, we’ve also been working away on the exterior of the house. We’ll cut out the shape of the driveway and sidewalks, often with a skid steer. The concrete masons form the sidewalk, pour it, and let it cure before we deliver our pavers and paver material. A paver crew puts down the pavers in a matter of days, and we move to a final grade on the lot. When the grading contractor establishes the correct elevations and cuts for drainage, we’re ready for landscaping and sod.

Final Inspections and Walkthrough

While there are many obstacles we must navigate towards the end of our build to receive our certificate of occupancy, we’re just about finished. Our superintendents mark out imperfections for correction, and walk through the house with the buyer. The house is cleaned, and we hand it over to the new homeowners, marking an end to our custom homebuilding journey.

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