Post and beam is a style of construction that allows you to see the supporting framework of the home. The exposed wood makes a beautiful home that stands apart from conventional framing. The amount of exposed wood can be changed to fit your personal preferences. Pictures are the best way of explaining what it looks like, so we suggest looking through our designs.
In short, we offer exceptional services and materials at a reasonable cost. Our employees have a tremendous amount of experience and will guide you in the right direction. The average length of employment at Habitat is over 20 years! Habitat has been in business since 1972.
You can bring us a house design, find one on our Web site (we can completely customize any design), or we can start from scratch based on your input. After preliminary estimates and your decision to proceed with our package, you will be provided a complete set of custom plans from which you or your builder will obtain permits. We are happy to assist you in determining a builder to assemble our package and finish the home. When the permitting process is complete, our workshop will begin building your kit package. After the foundation and first floor system is installed by you or your contractor, our package is delivered. Once assembly of our material package is complete, your building will be weather tight (it will look virtually finished on the outside). Your builder and subcontractors continue to finish the interior.
Typically everything is included for a weather-tight shell, not including any masonry (foundation, chimneys, etc). A local builder typically assembles our package and finishes the home. Once assembly of our material package is complete, your building will look virtually finished on the outside.
Our Showroom at our facility in South Deerfield, Massachusetts is especially useful, as it showcases our different framing systems so you can compare them side by side. We always recommend a visit to our design office, workshop, and showroom if it's possible for you. There is often a house under construction within a reasonable driving distance from our facility that we can bring you to, as well. We periodically host open houses at homes that are either under construction or just finished, so please make sure any contact information you've submitted to us is up to date to receive notifications. Check out our News & Events for the latest event posting, and our Facebook page for Events announcements. Appointments to see customers' finished homes either in your area or near to our office are often possible. We take our past customers' busy schedules and privacy very seriously, and for that reason we typically wait to schedule a private showing of a customer’s home until you're reasonably sure you've narrowed down your decision to work with us, and seeing another home in person would help you complete your decision.
From starting the design to being handed the keys, the process usually takes at least six months and about a year is common. We typically return the first drawing and major revisions within two weeks of your initial commitment. Smaller changes are typically done faster. If you start with plans that are close to what you want and only need minor modifications, the total design process might take about a month, but some people like to take a year or more to fine tune the design. The design process is open ended. Also keep in mind that in some areas the permitting process can be quite lengthy. After you approve the design and complete the contract, we can typically ship the package within six-to-eight weeks. This is usually the amount of time the builder needs to dig, install the foundation and frame the first level floor system. Depending on the house and the framing crew, the package is typically weather tight in four to six weeks. Finishing the house varies widely depending on the general contractor, but it is rare to finish everything else in less than three months and six months is typical.
To begin exploring your building plans using Habitat (or if you have additional questions about continuing an existing project with us), please call us at 1-800-992-0121, come by during our normal business hours (M-F 9-5 and the first Saturday of every month from 9-2) and bring all of your ideas and site information (as detailed as possible), e-mail us with as much information as possible about your project and any previous contact with us, or fax in your information to 413/665-4008. Please always include your building location, where you first learned about our company, and a phone number where we can contact you with our questions. For more information about starting the design for your material package, please visit our Working With Us page.
Habitat's web site and catalog feature standard plans that can be modified to suit your needs, as well as examples of projects that were completely custom designed as a starting point. Many people bring us their ideas, photos, sketches and plans from their own research as a starting point for their own fully customized package.
Our large-format printers and copiers are capable of producing full-color designs and renderings that are visually effective presentations. Once floor plans and elevations are complete, a 3-D image is generated that allows the client to see the home with a more realistic perspective. This is a very important visualizing tool that helps prevent mistakes in design and layout.