Winters in Westmoreland County and Pittsburgh area have been a mixed bag in recent years, everything from brutal cold and ice to the occasional day of T-shirt weather. Even in a typical, snowy winter, you might be surprised to know that construction crews are still out there building houses. Stored lumber is in good shape as long as any snow is brushed off before melting. It requires some extra preparation and planning, but you can work a winter home build to your advantage.
When home construction season is booming spring through fall, it can be more difficult to schedule meetings with materials vendors and tradespeople. Working in the winter months can move your time frame along faster when it comes to choosing and ordering appliances, fixtures and other custom finishes for your house project. Off season work also means there is less of a bureaucratic backlog when it comes to getting approval of utility and other government permits.
Pricing and Products
Materials prices often go up in the spring due to demand. It’s true that some cold weather concrete and masonry work requires tenting and heating that can add costs to your project, but these additional costs could be offset by the lower prices for lumber and other supplies.
All excavation work should be done before the ground freezes, and it’s preferable to time concrete pouring with mild weather. But today’s much-improved home building products and technological advances really extend the construction season. Pouring concrete and moving equipment around a building site can be just as or even more challenging in mud and rain as it is on a day with light snow.
One of the best things about building a new home over the winter is the timing of move-in day. With a spring or summer move, you can immediately start landscaping your lot and enjoying both the indoor and outdoor spaces of your new house. If you have school-age children, they will have time to get settled before starting a new school year.
Don’t let approaching cold weather delay your decision to start building a new home. Meet with your builder to talk about how they handle construction during the winter months. It’s important to be clear about any additional costs and who will be responsible for paying them, as well as how weather could impact the timing of the project.