Design - Build

This is our process

Design – Build


1.

Concept Phase

Architecture and building are a balance of form and function. Newcastle works with you to determine
your needs in a home while simultaneously achieving the aesthetic you desire. This phase also
involves site selection, budget, and timeline.
Phase Length: 2 weeks

Product: Conceptual understanding of what you want your home to be
Phase Length: 2 weeks

2.

Finance

Now that we have an idea of what we want to do, how, and when, it’s time to get serious about how
to pay for it most efficiently. While we can work with any financial arrangement, we have excellent
resources for finding the best construction and permanent financing options available, including
offering our own financing, which often requires only 5-10% down (extremely uncommon for custom
design-build!) and rates lower than individuals can obtain. Finance is often viewed as complex and
expensive, especially when custom design and construction are involved, but not with Newcastle –
we make design-build and custom home ownership easy and cost effective.

Product: A firm financial plan to implement your project
Phase Length: 2-4 weeks

3.

Elevations and Floor Plans

Now the fun begins! We exchange images, ideas, floor plans, and other design elements to create a
detailed design program. Your feedback and our interaction quickly provide us a solid understanding
of what you want your home to be in terms of lifestyle and aesthetic. This conceptual phase and
design program detail the essential elements of your project and guides us through the design
process, all of which is holistically meshed with site selection, budget, and timeline.

Phase Length: 2 weeks (Note: Steps 1-3 often overlap and usually all three are accomplished in 2-4 weeks)

4.

Designer Selection

With location, budget, timeline and a design program developed, as well as an understanding of
you as an individual, we now cooperate to select an architect. While we can work with any architect,
Newcastle has nurtured relationships with a diverse selection of local cutting-edge design talent
that can ambitiously combine all the essential elements of superior design, and do so with style. We
also obtain special rates and pass the savings on to you—another way single-sourcing design-build
offers tremendous value.

Our choice architects combine with Newcastle and our clients to masterfully balance form and
function, using state-of-the-art technology, hands-on knowledge of construction and code, and a
commitment to sustainability and energy efficiency to design your home. Design of this caliber is
typically unattainable at price points this affordable, but Newcastle leverages special relationships
with these architects to make outstanding custom architecture within your budget. To match you with
the designer best-suited for you, we review portfolios, facilitate meetings and site visits, and discuss
design philosophy, ensuring we all click professionally and personally.

Product: Architect selection
Phase Length: 2 weeks

5.

Design-Build Contract

We’re now serious about this project and all parties need to be protected with a simple but clear
agreement. We enter into a design-build contract that includes your design program and detail on
location, budget, timeline, architect, and other pertinent project details. A deposit (typically 1 – 3%
of the total project value) secures your lot, retains the architect, and starts design. Details of such
an agreement vary from case to case, but sample agreements from projects similar to yours will
be provided and we work together to draft a custom contract that matches your specific needs and
protects all parties.

Product: Design-Build Contract
Phase Length: 1 week

6.

Design Phase

Our team is assembled and our plan is in place – it’s design time! The architect takes the lead and
Newcastle orchestrates all the details seamlessly, but YOU are the boss! Communication is key,
and that will be the strength of our relationship throughout. Electronic information exchanges play
an important role, but the most important (and fun) part will be our design sessions, where the team
works together using the latest design and imaging software to turn your vision into a buildable
reality.

Product: A complete set of blueprints for your new home
Phase Length: 4-8 weeks

7.

Construction Contract, Permitting, and Financing

Now that your home is designed, we develop and detailed budget and final price. Few builders
can match the level of transparency Newcastle provides, and by pricing AFTER the plans are
complete, we do not have to overcharge our clients with ‘cushioning’ and also provide an extra
level of certainty that the project will be within budget. If the project prices too high, we adjust the
plans before we enter into a contract and start building. Sounds simple and logical, but this is rare in
design-build and a unique part of the Newcastle process that has proven to be very valuable. Only
when we are certain all parties are satisfied that the plans and budget are perfect do we execute a
contract. With this contract in hand, we obtain permits and financing so we are ready to build!

Product: Final price, plans, permit, and contract
Phase Length: 4-6 weeks (Note: this phase is very hard to predict time-wise since how long it takes to price and permit is dictated by market forces.)

8.

Construction Phase

Now it’s time to make our carefully crafted plan a reality. Newcastle has built dozens of homes in
Central Austin and our process and product are top-notch. We do not build houses, we craft homes,
and we pride ourselves on the lasting relationships we develop with our clients and the unparalleled
service we provide for the life of your home.

At the beginning of the construction phase you will receive a detailed outline of what will happen and
when. You also receive categorized allowances for selecting the finish materials that will be crafted
into your home. Our team and ‘critical path’ tell you what you need to select, when, and how. We
are experts at sourcing the highest quality materials for the best price. Of course Newcastle and
our architect help make your selections, for performance and style, but YOU are in charge. Change
orders and special selections are welcome – we have a simple process for handling those and use
top-notch custom software to always keep you precisely informed of where you stand budget-wise.

During construction we keep you informed on all aspects of your project via phone calls, emails,
meetings and site visits. There will be no surprises – you will know exactly what is going on, how,
and why at every step of the way. Single-source design-build is simple and extraordinarily effective –
this is YOUR home.

Product: Your new home, a Certificate of Occupancy, and ENERGY STAR Certification – your vision has become a reality!
Phase Length: 5-8 months (Note: project duration is dictated by the project and market forces.)

9.

Satisfaction Guaranteed

Your home is built, but we’re not done! Complete satisfaction is guaranteed. At this point, we visit
the site for a final walk-through to ensure everything has come together just so. Every issue is
addressed to your satisfaction – we’re not done until you say so! Once this is complete, we close at
the title company and your vision is reality, the home is yours! But remember, Newcastle prides itself
on the unique way we take care of our clients long after closing—just talk with some of our many
referrals and you will understand what this means!

Product: Peace of mind, a deed, and a set of keys! And another satisfied Newcastle Homes client!
Phase Length: 1-2 weeks

10.

Summary

Design-build projects of this size and scope typically take 10-12 months but offer amazing value in
multiple ways that is just unattainable any other way:
• YOU control all aspects of the project but have expert advice at every step of the way!
• YOU control where your resources are focused—don’t pay for things you do not want or
need and instead focus on what matter most to YOU in your home!
• In a market like this, the time between the price lock-in and closing often results in instant
equity. Newcastle Homes offers premiere Austin lifestyle but also an outstanding investment!
• Green-building in the urban core with Newcastle is a win-win: you are responsibly decreasing
your environmental footprint AND saving your own money!
• This is a process as much as a product and Newcastle has mastered both! PLEASE ask to
see inside homes we have completed, talk to clients as references, and know that EVERY
step of this process and element of YOUR home are designed and executed holistically by
some of the most talented and passionate professionals in Austin!

Testimonials