Cape Gazette
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New Home Buyer Tip

By The Lewes Building Co. | Aug 10, 2013
Photo by: The Lewes Building Company

Total square feet vs. heated square feet: What's the difference?

In most cases the difference is significant.  The opening question for many people who are considering hiring a builder is: “What is your price per square foot?”  In order to get you through their front door, many area builders (both small custom builders and popular production style builders) will quote or advertise a price that is based on total square feet of the area of the building (length times width). Other builders include any “space” under roof (e.g., garages, covered patios, decks, front porches, unfinished basement areas, etc.)

In our opinion, the above practices are deceptive. At its' heart this is a “bait and switch”. These practices allow the builder to quote or advertise a lower price per square foot so that they (or a team of smiling sales and selection consultants) can then sell you finish upgrades, structural upgrades (e.g., a “four foot great room bump out”), and other “upgrades”.  It usually turns out that the model home you walked through or saw advertised, will be much, much more than that initial price per square foot quote.

The Lewes Building Company believes that a home is major investment and that a client should never settle for less.  We know that our clients are very savvy, have done extensive research and know this market.  The last thing we would ever do is give a client an unrealistic price or have a client feel like s/he is settling for less.  The quality you see in our finished homes comes standard in ALL of our homes.

We don’t sell “upgrades” because we decided long ago that we would only build beautiful, aesthetically pleasing homes, with the highest quality finishes and building materials.  Our price per square foot is based on the heated and conditioned area of the home – not the garage or the covered deck.  This is why so many people who walk a home built by the Lewes Building Company say "wow this house feels a lot bigger". When you take the time to consider a home that has been described honestly, you immediately feel that you are getting MORE for your money rather than realizing that you will have to make compromises.  Be sure to ask your builder if his/her provided square feet includes any non-conditioned areas, especially if they note square feet as "Total Square Feet".

The price per square foot quoted by The Lewes Building Company is a true price and – even more importantly – our contracted price is guaranteed.

Our clients are very special to us.  We understand that while we may be in the custom home building business, we are actually in the trust-building business.  It is our goal to earn your trust and your recommendation for years to come; and it all starts with a clear and honest answer to, “What is your price per square foot?”

(Photo by: The Lewes Building Company)
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