I am a retired builder, master plumber, HVAC contractor, ele contractor and asbestos abatement contractor.
I was at one time the youngest builder in the entire state of Texas.
What no one ever tells you is that the cost of building a home is far less than what you are told.
I began building homes in the 70's with my actual cost being @ $20 per square foot for a 2000 square foot home. Mine sold for @ $67k to $75k at that time and I sold cheap because I was new.
After several years into it I was building homes still at the the same general cost but selling them for @ $90 to $110K.
When today's builders tell you what it costs they add in their weekly/monthly income; overhead, golf, vacations and etc. This is not disputable.
What costs a person $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ on a new home is their idiocy in terms of emotional buying and wanting all those extras when in fact they are not needed.
In 2017 a person could build a 2000 square foot home for @ $90k. Possibly as high as $110K. However this home would be worth between $200k and 225K depending on the market.
Builders, all builders today are cookie cutter builders, they have an entire subdivision to build out and make more money on the lots than they do on the actual sale of the home.
A 10 acre tract of land for $10k per acre costs them $100k to $150k. They will get at least 4 homes per acre and will charge as much as $25 to $75k per lot and will require most of the time that you have them build the home.
So their 10 acre investment of $150k, heck lets say $500k including utilities and roads will bring in @ $1,000,000.00 to $3,000,000.00. They have just made between $500k to 2.5 million dollars just on the land and in Dallas Texas the 2.5 million is closer to the norm than the $500k out in the country would be. In fact in Dallas it could be $5,000,000.00.
I still build from time to time and even today I build (not including land/utilities) for @ $35 per square foot which is really my cost with nothing added in for me.
So if you built a 1500 square foot home it would run me @ $52K to build the actual home plus utility costs that could range from $5000 to $15000.00 (septic required) and your land costs which could be as little as $3000 to $10000 (out in the country) for a grand total of $69k to $80k and have a home worth as much as $150k.
Pretty good investment I do believe.
Don't listen to builders, they are in it for the money only and have no reason to tell you the truth like I have as a retired builder and contractor.
I'm not disrespecting the today 'builder'. I'm just telling you the truth.
The only exception to this is than some builders have money and no building sense, no trade knowledge, no hands on experience so they contract everything out, pay the bill with out thinking and just hope to pass it on to the buyer. Really sad.