Spec Home vs Custom Home: What Are the Differences?

spec home vs custom home

Buying a home for you and your family is a decision that isn’t taken too lightly. Not only are there several smaller decisions to be made in the process of buying a home, but there’s also that lingering question of how you can truly make the home your own.

While many find it easier to buy an older home, those usually end up being more trouble than they are worth, and not very many have the time to sit down and think of ways to renovate it.

Luckily, there are more choices. A spec home and a custom home are both forms of new construction that you can invest in to give yourself and your family a home that is new and functional from the moment you buy it.

These types of homes differ in many ways but one of them may be perfect for your needs, depending on the budget, time, and overall plans.

As you continue to read, you’ll find out what differences there are in a spec home vs custom home situation and which home is best for you.

What is a Spec Home?

Spec homes are move-in-ready houses that are built way before a buyer comes along. Because of this, most of the features are kept basic and neutral in order to present a space that would appeal to a potential buyer. However, these same features are all based on what the builder thinks would appeal to the buyers.

These homes are built by a contractor who makes use of a single plan that works well with the area all while keeping the materials under budget. The builder then proceeds to place the home on the market for buyers to look at.


Part of the deciding process in buying a home is research. By looking at the pros and cons of each home you get to have intensive knowledge on the subject and it’s extremely helpful when making a decision. Spec homes have many benefits and here are a few of them.


Spec homes are great for those who are just getting into the housing market and are on a tighter budget. It can serve as a stepping stone to finally build your dream house in the future.

Easy Move-In

Spec homes tend to be built in a few months. After all, the builders have to work with a set plan and a set amount of materials that would enable them to work on each home in quick time.

That is a benefit for you as once the home has been built, it’s completely move-in ready.

Easy Resell

When looking to resell a spec home, you’ll find it quite easy to find an eager buyer. The house itself has already been built to standard, and the simple but updated look of the house and its features are great for those who are willing to add their own touch to the house.


Of course, when there are pros, there are also cons. Listed below are some of the disadvantages that come with buying a spec home.


A spec home tends to be limited in its features and sometimes you might have to make a few extra upgrades of your own.

Additionally, you may not like the location that a spec home is placed in but there is nothing to be done about it as the builders get to decide where to place the house.

Gone too Fast

Because builders would want to sell the home and move on to the next project, spec homes are generally sold at a competitive price. That means you won’t be the only one looking for a house and may have a chance to miss out on an opportunity of buying the house.

What is a Custom Home?

A custom home differs from a spec home because you would have to approach the builder with a floor plan that you or an architect you hired have come up with.

While spec homes may have the basics in the choices for flooring, paint, and fixtures in the house, you get to have a say in the quality and the aesthetic appeal of these features. You also become a major decision-maker in the placement of the rooms and how big you’d them thus allowing you to truly make the home your own.


Choosing to build a custom home leads to plenty of advantages. below, you’ll see a few of them that can help you make a decision.


It’s in the name. By building a custom house, you get to choose how many rooms you want, how big each room is, and what materials you want the house to be made of, without any limitations.

Choose the Location You Want

Custom houses are built from the ground up and you get to choose where you want your home to be.

You Have the Control

You get to be involved in all the decisions regarding the building of the house. And most of all, what you say will be what the builders will do.


Building a custom home does have its disadvantages. As you read on, you’ll see what cons come with building a custom home and how they can affect you in the long term.


Custom houses tend to be costly. That could be due to the quality or the number of materials needed for the exact design of your house, the help of an architect when drafting a floor plan, or the size of the house you want.

May Take More Time

Unlike spec houses, custom homes tend to take a long time which may differ depending on the customizations you choose. That being said, it may also take more time before you and your family could officially move in but the results are surely worth it.

Spec Home vs Custom Home: Which Build is Best for You?

Amidst the spec home vs custom home debate, what really matters is finding the right home builder who will take your timeline, design, and budget into account.

We at Rock Ridge Homes stand by making sure that the house you get is the house you want, guaranteeing that our build quality and craftmanship remain top-notch.

Want to get started on building your very own home? Contact us now and we’ll be more than happy to get back to you.

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