Custom Home Builder

Affordable Craftsmen is a Georgia State licensed custom home builder. Our office is out of North Cobb in Marietta Ga and we focus on building homes in Cobb, Cherokee, Paulding, Bartow & Pickens Counties. We’ve mostly built homes between $700k and 2 million over the past 20 years, but in the last few years, we’ve had the chance to build as low as $180k and some in the $300-500k range as well. Although we’re always glad to serve regardless of home size, we have decided in the last couple years to make an intentional effort to work with as many customers as possible to build smaller custom homes. Many custom builders around North Atlanta prefer not to build below $500k, as it’s a lot less profit for almost as much work, so we’ve found our clients wanting to build homes between 1,000 and 2,000sf having a difficult time finding a custom builder.

This often includes helping our customers find a lot to build on that makes sense, meaning smaller and less expensive, but that works for the type and size house they want to build. It’s common for clients to work with a Real Estate agent to buy their lot, only to find out there are complications or limitations, as the agent is not as knowledgeable about lots as a land developer. If this happens, we spend months resolving or working around these kind of issues before a permit can be pulled and building start…

People are always surprised as it can take 3-6 months to find the land, buy it, get it surveyed, get soil test done if on septic, design the house to fit the land, get site plan done and finalize financing. Then we’re ready to permit followed by another 4-10 months to build it depending on the size & complexity. Many homes start early March through May and again September through November due to weather, as clearing, grading & pouring the concrete foundation is tough in rainy or cold weather.

We have been developing lots and building homes since 2002 in N. Fulton, Cobb and Cherokee Counties. We’ve built from 1,000sf to 12,000sf and although Southern Living is the most common style home built in North Atlanta, we’ve also built circa 1850, circa 1900, hypo-allergenic, Earth Craft, modern and many other unique and somewhat specialized styles of homes over the past 21 years.

We are a cost plus builder, meaning that all material & labor is budgeted for and made available to you. If you want to add or subtract, up-grade or down-grade along the way, we will not create some arbitrary cost to charge you, it will be purely based on what the actual real world cost is.

We love to help our customers find the right land, make sure it works for what you want to build on it, help design your new home to fit the lot and work within your timeline and budget. In addition to surveying the land/lot, often a soil test is needed for septic permit, then a site plan has to be drawn showing the home, driveway, cut/fill, erosion control, etc before the building permit can be pulled. Ends up the county or city are usually a lot less concerned with the home plan than the site plan, as the home plan is just used to confirm the permit fee and septic permit are correct.

That said, every year we get customers that have already bought their land and purchased a home design they like on-line. We bid out their home build and end up being both their lowest estimate and offering the best ideas/direction moving forward. When they ask how soon we can pull a permit, I often have to say 2-4 months, as there’s no survey, which we need to get the soil test and site plan done, which we need to get the septic permit and finally the building permit. Often there are issues with the lot that the real estate agent didn’t know were a problem, the house plan needs modified but that costs more with the on-line seller than had we just drew the house plan from scratch.

Regardless of where you are in the custom home building process, we want to help. We know that often our customers are coming to us with a bunch of stuff already done or decided as they didn’t want to get a builder involved too early, as they were planning, smartly so, to get a bunch of builder bids once the land and home design were done. That said, if you’re early in the process, we want you to know, that we have no expectation of being your assumptive or committed builder just because we help you from the beginning or early in the process!

Now, we don’t want to work for free either, as our time is valuable, so we would just charge for our time. In fact, ask us about our coach-to-build program where we can not only coach you through the pre-permit or pre-build stage, but also coach you through being your own builder and running the sub-contractors if that’s what you want and feel up to it. It will be time and money well spent, letting us guide you through what we do every day since 2002, as not only have we been building homes, we’ve been developing lots. Before that we were in the mortgage business, trained as underwriters and appraisers.

We have our own surveyors, soil engineers, structural engineers, civil engineers and architects, all of whom are top of their field and their pricing through us is at the very bottom of the range, often 1/2 or even 1/4 what you would pay as home owners out in the market. So take advantage of our help, the savings in time, energy and money will well exceed the time, energy and money you invest in our help, we promise!

Lastly, things can change, but as of today, we’ve never bid a new custom home build that we didn’t get the build. Some of that is that we’re very efficient and very affordable, yet no one would hire the lowest big of 3, 5 or 10 bids unless they also felt like we were asking the right questions, making the right suggestions and communicating well.

Now being honest, even with great planning & project management, none of us control the market, none of us control the weather and there are a lot of pieces and parts that go into a house. A house that’s being built out in a yard in the weather, not in a factory. But we work to prepare for and manage those things the best we can and those things are going to be issues no matter who you chose to work with, so we would rather just address the elephant in the room…

So going forward, assuming you’re looking to build a custom home, why not meet with us, let us know what you want to achieve, including what you’ve done so far and let us give some honest but kind feedback, make some suggestions about moving forward. If you see our value on your team and want to try us out, then let’s work on your pre-permit, pre-build process. Let’s map it out for and with you. If you like it, hire us to help you through that phase. Once that experience is good, we’d love an opportunity to give you estimates to build your home turn key, to co-build with you or to coach you through the process as you act as your own builder.

End of the day, our commitment is to help you strategize and figure out how to build the best home, the one that serves you and your family best, for the least money, regardless of what roll we end up playing!

Gary & Renee’ McCormick