Custom Built Home V Project Home

17 March, 2021 | Mikala Chapman

Custom Built Home V Project Home

So, you are contemplating having a new home built. A home to suit you and your family for years to come. With that comes many decisions, beginning with whether you choose a custom- built home or a project one. Before you can make that decision though, you need to understand the differences between the two. Here, we will explain the terms, their advantages, and disadvantages, allowing you to make an informed decision. 

Let us explore what could be your best choice, custom built home v project home?

Project homes

When we refer to a project home, we are talking about a residential building that is built on mass. Although a building company may have a few different designs to offer, they are generally seen to be a one-size-fits-all, take-it-as-it-is home. This kind of design comes with its own advantages and disadvantages.


The number one reason people choose project homes is the cost. Since these homes are created on mass some of the associated costs like architectural design, construction drawings, and structural drawings can be recovered over several homes. Materials are offered at a lower cost due to discounts from suppliers for buying large amounts of their product. As the homes are pretty much the same, construction is usually easier and at times faster. All these facts lead to a cheaper home. Due to the sameness of project homes, there are less decisions for you to make.


Probably the biggest disadvantage of a project home is that one-size DOES NOT fit-all. If your house block is of unusual size or shape, then a project home may not fit. Nor does it consider the view, sunrise/sunset, or many of your family’s wants and needs. A project home does not allow for the individuality or personality you will get with a custom-built home. The resale value of a project home is often affected by the lack of individualism of one house from another, and at times the quality of the build and finishes are not to a very high standard. 

An advertised price for a project home may not include all the hidden costs and can be misleading.

Custom Built Homes

The label of a custom-built home refers to homes that are individually designed and built with the owner’s wants and needs at the forefront.


By engaging an architect to create a custom design that is adapted to your build requirements and your block, it doesn’t matter what size or shape your land is, a good custom home builder can make it work and build your dream design.

An architecturally designed home can consider the view, the sunrise, and your family’s lifestyle and individuality. Creating a home that functions well, has beautiful flow and aesthetically looks seamless and considered requires dedication and focus on the details. 

This is what you get when you design and build a custom-built home, you can choose the materials, the size of the windows, the colours, the taps, lighting, room size, etc, the choices are all yours. 

With a custom-built home, you should expect a high standard of build quality. There is a strong focus on the details, the individuality of the home and a dedication to the importance of the design. 

A custom-built home not only applies to a new home build, but to renovations and extensions. Project home builders will not look at a renovation or extension, in this area a custom home builder is your only option. An experienced custom home builder will have the skill set to build and renovate on difficult sites where access is difficult and will work with your existing structure.


The cost would be the main disadvantage for a custom- built home. Design and drawing costs cannot be evened out over a number of homes but must be recouped on each home, and there are no bulk-buy discounts for materials. Construction of your new home may take longer depending on the level of detail and site difficulty and there are many more decisions required of you.

Before you decide on whether you will go for a project home or a custom-built home you need to consider:

  • Budget
  • Lifestyle requirements/family needs
  • Land size/shape
  • Distinguishing features of the block
  • Your desired level of quality
  • Design wish list

All of these will influence your decision or make your decision for you. If your piece of land is not shaped to support a standard, non-individual, basic project home, then you will have no choice than to speak to a custom or luxury home builder

When you are making the ultimate decision on building your new home you need to decide what you are willing to compromise on and what is a non-negotiable, this will help you decide whether or not you will need a custom or builder or if a project home will do. 

BIC Construction is an experienced custom home builder specialist servicing Sydney. Please call the team at BIC if you have any questions.

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