Confused planning your custom home build?

Confused planning your custom home build?

Confused planning your custom home build?

Want to build a custom home but don’t know where to start?

The builder, the plans or the lot?


One of the greatest struggles custom building clients go through is the question, “What do I need to do first?  Do I buy a lot, create building plans, or choose a builder?

This question gets much attention, therefore, let me give a bit of perspective.

There are many different reasons to start building a new custom home.  Some people knew that it was time to move, go bigger, go smaller, or simply needed a change.  They were in a situation where they could afford to build a house but knew that they had specific things they wanted in a house.

Enter the custom building process.

More often than not, the client will see a building lot in a spectacular location that is owned by the builder, or clients will bring a location that they want, own, or are in the process of buying.   Going this route allows the design process to take into account every nuance, every tree, every angle, and every ray of light into consideration when planning the layout because they already know the lot dimension, direction, and sizing guidelines.  This often works very well, with everyone knowing exactly what is possible on the lot available.

This does, however, have its setbacks as if they wait for the lot to be found and purchased, it extends the amount of time.  Also, finding the “perfect” lot might happen but they may find that the lot is locked with a builder that they do not necessarily want to build with, or is able to meet their needs.

Alternatively, we have had clients ask if they should purchase, design, or create a custom home design and plans because they know what they want already.  This works for somebody that is able to know exactly what kind of lots are available, and they are all relatively the same.  Architects, designs, and home builders are usually familiar with the local setback lines, indicating the allowable build size without a variance.  Going through a knowledgeable source is best, as designing a custom home that can fit on “most” lots is a tricky task and requires a lot of guessing on everyone’s part.  This is the least recommended path to follow as the usual reason for going through the custom building process in the first place is to get EXACTLY what they wanted in the first place.

Last but not least, is choosing the builder FIRST.  More times than not, I have witnessed people go from builder to builder, constantly being discouraged by “custom” builders that offer pre-designed layouts, with the minimal ability or desire to change them. Going with a proven custom builder is a great option as working with a custom builder will give you a lot of experience and guidance when going through the process.  One thing that Emmett Leo Homes does better than anyone else is knowing where the client should put their money, vs where they can save.  This all has to do with finding out what is important to them and helping guide them through the hundreds of decisions required.  This comes from our # 1 value: HONESTY.  We will always recommend what we believe to be the right choice for our clients, whether it’s about finishing, design, or timelines.

The biggest setback with choosing a builder first is they might not have access to the desired location, and not have the experience in purchasing and negotiating homes/vacant lots that are for sale by another builder or a homeowner.  With an extensive background in buying, building, and selling luxury spec projects, Emmett Leo Homes can help work together without clients to get them their desired location faster and cheaper.

A great builder will also have a some of the best insight as to who should be brought in as interior designers, architects, and appropriate trades.  There are amazing professionals out there, and a great builder will be able to help bring in the best ones.  

At Emmett Leo Homes, we offer 10 years of negotiating experience purchasing undervalued property, as well as finding an off-market property.  We work with the best team to find infill lots that are not on the market or purchase development lots found in most developments.

Whichever way you decide to go, know that we are always here to lend a guiding hand, should clients choose to go with us or not.   The custom building process can be tedious without the right help, and we strive to help all those, clients or not and lead them in the right direction for THEM.

Winnipeg Custom Home Builder | The Blog

Winnipeg Custom Home Builder | The Blog

Welcome to the first official post for Emmett Leo Homes. We are excited to finally have this up and running, and be able to connect with you this way.  This blog is to educate you, entertain you, and most of all, understand who we are and what we do.

Emmett Leo Homes is a Winnipeg custom home builder, with the bulk of our homes in one of Canada’s most prestigious neighborhoods: Tuxedo.  What we do very well is build homes.  What we are going to be doing a much better job at is actually showing YOU the process.  The planning, the process, the insight, and the steps.  The raw truth of what building is, and why it makes us unique.

We have some very simple goals here: help you figure out any and all of your housing questions, and show you why Emmett Leo Homes is better than all the rest.   It will be a daily blog, so make sure that you check it out regularly if you are interested in building, remodeling, or simply looking at cool things happening.  We will give you access to some of Winnipeg’s most elegant homes as they are built.  We will educate about decisions that have to be made by the home purchaser and provide insight into the pitfalls that a lot of other builders run into.  Let’s not be unrealistic…there are always things that come up.  We plan to take you through them and show you what to expect, and how we overcome them.

Make sure to check out the blog every day for more tips and adventures that we get to share with you.  Please sign up for the blog if you feel that you want it delivered directly to you.

Emmett Leo Homes is a Winnipeg custom home builder that focuses on a completely transparent, client-focused experience. If you’re dreaming about designing and building your new custom home, make sure to follow us for inspiration on Instagram and educational videos on YouTube.