America's Best House Plans

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Michael Luckado

Michael Luckado has built, remodeled, and repaired thousands of homes across the U.S. He co-founded ArmchairBuilder.com to help people save money and time creating their dream home.

Avoiding Yard Drainage Problems in New Homes

Building a new home gives us a chance to create something brand new with the goal of having no problems.  After all, that’s one of the motivations for building a new home in the first place.  You shouldn’t have to … Continue reading

Can I Build My Own House?

One common question that comes up when looking at house plans is, “Can I build my own house while acting as the general contractor?”  The good news is you don’t need a contractor’s license to build your own home.  You … Continue reading

Fixed Price vs. Cost-Plus Contracts

When it comes to hiring contractors, it’s very important to understand the contract options before signing any documents.  Two major types of contracts used today when building homes are fixed price contracts and cost-plus contracts.  For most new home projects, … Continue reading

Know the Warranty for Your New Home

Whether you are building a custom home from scratch or just having your bathroom remodeled, each contractor should provide a written warranty that describes which items are covered and for how long.  But how long should the warranty coverage be?  … Continue reading

Check Restrictions Prior to Lot Purchase

Most communities that were developed within the past twenty years have some type of homeowner’s association that restricts what can be done within its boundaries.  Things like boat storage, fence installation, and house colors are examples of items that might … Continue reading

Attic Pull-Down Stair Installation Defects

A fantastic way to add additional storage to any home is by utilizing unfinished attic space.  By simply adding a set of attic pull-down stairs and some plywood decking, an otherwise useless space can be used to store seasonal items.  … Continue reading

Backfilled Areas Can Cause Trouble

It goes without saying that most new home building projects require a lot of digging.  And every section of ground that is disturbed needs to be placed back to a grade that matches the engineered plot plan.  Things like foundations, … Continue reading

Manufactured Stairs for New Homes

Manufactured stairs can in many cases be a great alternative for the stair design in your new dream home.  A manufactured stair is put together in a controlled environment typically with automated machinery to high quality standards.   And because the … Continue reading

New Home Sewer Backup

  Let’s say you’ve been in your home for six weeks.  You are just starting to get things settled.  You take one of your boxes down into the basement and smell a foul odor.  It turns out your main sewer … Continue reading

Carefully Evaluate House Plan Changes

It’s very important to carefully evaluate potential house plan changes before pulling the trigger.  A good contractor will let a customer know when a change will create more problems than it is worth.  However, some future homeowners can be very … Continue reading