by AINSLEY LAWRENCE
Building a new home in the South isn’t exactly like building in other parts of the country. First, you have to understand the cultural differences. We can’t stress enough the importance of ordering your tea sweet enough. And, all soda is “Coke.”
Now that we have that out of the way, there are some important things to take into consideration if you’re planning on building in the South. If you are, you’re certainly not alone. Throughout the pandemic, many Americans have made a move down South to experience less congested areas and more rural spaces.
Whether you want more space or you’re just looking for a change of scenery, this part of the country has a lot to offer. But, knowing what to expect before you break ground on a home can make a big difference.
So, what do you need to know before you build a home in the South?
Wonderful And Weird Weather
It’s not uncommon for people to associate Southern weather with warmth and sunshine. While that’s mostly true, the reality is, we don’t have perfect weather every day.
You might not experience a blizzard while you’re here (which is incentive enough for some people to make the move!). But, depending on where you move, you could experience some very volatile weather, including:
- Severe thunderstorms
With that in mind, it’s important to know when you should start building, and the type of construction that will help your home withstand those extreme weather conditions.
Choose your timeline wisely when you’re considering construction. On average, it takes about seven months to build a home. Hurricane season runs from June 1 to November 30, and peak tornado season goes from May to early June. While that doesn’t mean every year will bring horrible weather, you should plan your building efforts accordingly.
Most Southern states don’t get exceedingly cold during the winter, so it’s okay to break ground and work throughout the spring so your home is ready to go before any inclement weather threatens to delay the project. It will also give you time to make sure you’re using the right materials to keep your home strong,
Take Advantage Of Tradition
One of the reasons so many people love living in the South is the history. No matter where you go, there’s plenty of charm laced in tradition.
While no one can tell you exactly how to build your home, there are certain aspects of Southern architecture that have remained timeless for a reason. That includes things like oversized windows, screen doors, and large porches. If you’re moving to the South to enjoy less congestion, take advantage of it in your home design! A beautiful wraparound porch or expansive back deck are great options for spending as much time outdoors as possible.
You’ll quickly become a part of your local neighborhood, and having a more open outdoor space and welcoming windows will let your neighbors know you’re open to being a part of the community. By modeling your home design after traditional Southern architecture, you’ll quickly learn what real Southern hospitality is all about.
Porches are more than just gathering places or spots to relax. They actually serve a purpose when it comes to Southern homes. Originally, people in the South built large front porches because they allow more airflow to enter the house. That can be a lifesaver on especially warm days.
Go Green With Your Construction
Just because tradition is still important in the South doesn’t mean you can’t make some modern, sustainable upgrades to your construction process. There are plenty of benefits to “going green” while building a home, including:
- Reduced utility costs
- A healthier environmental impact
- Better indoor air quality
- Less water use
Green construction is becoming more popular and more practical all over the country. It might even be easier to reduce your home’s carbon footprint in the South.
First, there are plenty of sunny days. Installing solar panels on your home is a fantastic way to soak up that sun and convert it to energy to power your house. You might be surprised by how much it can save you on your electric bills. Second, we’ve got plenty of native plants and trees! They require less water to keep your landscaping looking great, and shade trees are fantastic for keeping your home cool.
Finally, keeping sustainability in mind throughout your home construction will boost its value. You might not be thinking about selling now, but if you ever want to buy a different place or build something different, you need to keep resale value in mind. Sustainability is more than just a “hot trend.” It’s something more home buyers are looking for when it comes to investing in the future. So, your green efforts will not only contribute to an environmentally-friendly future, but you could be setting yourself up for profitable success if you ever decide to move.
If you’re planning on building a home in the South, we’ll welcome you with open arms! But, make sure you keep these things in mind before you lay your foundation. Knowing how to build a strong, secure, and comfortable home that can withstand everything the region might throw at you will give you the chance to appreciate our environment (and our charm) that much more.