How to Build a Custom Tucson Luxury Home

Building a custom luxury home in Tucson can be extremely rewarding since you’ll be afforded the opportunity to create the home of your dreams that matches all of your specifications and desires! There’s a fantastic sense of ownership and fulfillment that comes with designing a home that you know your family will enjoy for years to come.

While building a custom home might seem to be a daunting prospect, doing so can provide you with an array of benefits, the primary of which is that you will have full control over the design of every room and feature of the luxury home. Although building your custom luxury home in Tucson is an exciting process, it can also be a complex one, which is why you need to conduct extensive research on the designing and building processes to make sure that your custom Tucson luxury home build is a success!

Planning with a vision board for a custom luxury home

Step 1: Planning: Budget, Timeframe, Land, & Constraints

The planning phase is by far the most important aspect of building a custom luxury home in Tucson. While it takes a large amount of talent and quality craftsmanship to build a home, you’ll be hiring qualified and reputable Tucson Custom Luxury Home professionals who you know can get the job done within your budget, on time, and to your exact specifications. However, the planning phase determines whether or not your project starts off well.

When planning the perfect custom luxury home, it’s important that you create a reasonable budget as well as an appropriate time frame. In order for your custom home build to be a success, focus on doing what you can to avoid issues during the build phase. If you set an unreasonably low budget without taking labor and materials into account, you may end up spending more in time and costs than you can afford.

Planning a Budget for a Custom Luxury Home in Tucson

The first aspect of planning your custom luxury home is to create a reasonable budget. Without first knowing how much money that you’re willing to spend, you won’t be able to determine what the size of your home should be and what features should be included within the design.

Creating a new home in Tucson typically costs anywhere from $75-$250 per square foot. You will likely end up spending closer to $250 per square foot if you are building a luxury property. When creating your budget, the various expenses that you will need to take into account include the overall cost of the land, interior design costs, construction expenses, landscaping costs, and initial design fees. It’s also recommended that you allocate a certain amount of the budget to the final cost estimate to account for any issues that might arise during construction.

Setting a timeframe for your Custom Luxury Home build

Do you have a certain time frame that you want the home to be started and finished by? If you do, it’s important that the time frame is appropriate and can be adhered to by the design and construction teams involved. If you have a new child on the way or would like to be moved in by the next school year, these important time horizons should be taken into consideration.

Located in prestigious Pima Canyon Est., 2094 E. Desert Garden Drive showcases sleek contemporary lines that define living spaces with warmth, charm & ambiance.

Finding the right location for your Custom Tucson Luxury Home

Once you’ve settled on a time frame that’s acceptable to you, it’s time to find the land that you want the home to be built on. The location of your home will affect nearly every aspect of the construction process and will determine whether or not you enjoy living on your new property.

There are a large number of considerations to keep in mind when searching for the right location, which include how large the lot is, the slope of the land, the number of trees on the yard, the style of other homes in the area, and the proximity of neighbors. You also need to ascertain what you value more in regards to privacy or having a beautiful view. If privacy is what you’re after, consider a home that’s located in a more secluded area in Tucson or one that allows for the construction of a high fence. Fortunately, due to the location of many luxury homes in Tucson, many of these custom luxury homes are afforded both the privacy and spectacular views from the Catalina Foothills. Architects and contractors can help you determine if the land you want to build on will provide for all of your needs.

Constraints & Regulation

Even if you love the look of the land, you also need to do some research on the property to determine if there are any licensing or permitting issues. Finding out the information about zoning in your area will allow you to identify if there are limits to how high the house can be built, how close it can be to the street, and what types of add-ons you can build. Make sure that you know which utility lines can be connected to your property. Assessing the land will help you determine if there are going to be any constraints to the building and designing process, which can include anything from time and money to regulations.

Designing a custom Tucson luxury home

Step 2: Designing Your Custom Tucson Luxury Home

After you’ve determined a budget and selected the land that you would like to build your luxury home on, you can start designing the home itself, which includes the size, layout, structural features, style, and rooms of the home.

Do you want to build your home in a contemporary style that’s known for sustainable components and natural light or would you prefer a more traditional style that’s heavy on wood accents and ornate furnishings? When designing the size and layout of your home, make sure that you start big and scale back whenever necessary. Consider ranking the structural features of your home by importance, which will allow you to prioritize if any issues arise during the building of your home. A professional Tucson interior designer‘s assistance in this phase of the design process can go a long way in reducing your overall costs and improving your satisfaction with the final home design!

Floor plan, size, layout

When determining the size of your home, the first thing you should do is settle on how many floors you want. Do you want a roomy attic or a spacious basement that you can use as a separate living space? Maybe you want both? While you have final say over every aspect of your home’s design, it’s important that you start with the size of your home.

You should make sure that the desired size can accommodate all the rooms that you want. When focusing on the layout of the home, consider whether you want an layout with large amounts of open space or a more constricted layout with distinct and separate spaces. Think about how you want the rooms to be arranged. Do you want the kitchen to be close to the laundry room or steps away from the living room? Answering these questions will allow you to begin formulating the final design for your luxury home.

The interior of 2094 E. Desert Garden Drive in Tucson represented by Susanne Grogan of Grogan & Grogan Tucson Luxury Real Estate

Structural features

As for structural features, each room comes with its own popular features for you to consider. You can add a large island in the middle of your kitchen for ample food preparation space. You could also add a wet bar if so desired. Do you want walk-in closets for your bedroom or would you prefer to focus on sizable bathrooms that can be entered from the bedroom? As for bathrooms, there are numerous styles of sinks and showers to select from.

You also need to settle on which type of roof you would like and what kind of lighting you want. For luxury homes, chandeliers offer upscale lighting. On the other hand, the placement of numerous windows around the home allows for a large amount of natural light. The most popular combination with modern homes is to use an open floor plan that consists of sustainable and “green” home features.

Step 3: Interview Architects & Builders

Now that you’ve designed your dream home, it’s time to interview the Tucson architects and custom home builders who will work on taking your dream and turning it into reality. The architect should be selected very early on in the process if you want your ideas to be turned into plans that the builders can use when constructing your home. To find the right architect for your project, search online resources (like the AIA to find architects who have received the proper licensing), speak with your Tucson Luxury Real Estate Realtor, and ask your friends and family for recommendations. Make sure that the architect you choose has a firm grasp of designing homes that match your style preferences. You should also inquire about 3-D rendering, which is a feature offered by many architects that allows you to better visualize what your home will look like.

You can find builders and general contractors in much the same way. Your architect should have some information about reputable builders for you to contact. Speaking with your Tucson Luxury Realtor or websites like BuildZoom will help you find contractors that fit the parameters of your project. Make sure that you speak with past clients before choosing a contractor if you want to have a better idea about the quality of service the contractor provides. As much as you can, closely monitor the building process to make sure that your specifications are being followed to the letter.

Planning a custom home build with home builders

Step 4: Finalizing Your Custom Tucson Luxury Home

Once the construction of your home has been completed, it’s time to finalize the process. Make sure that the contractor you select performs the cleanup of the building site, which should be written in the contract before anything is signed. If you want to make any changes to the surrounding landscape, the perfect time to do so is before moving in. Once you’ve moved in, unpack your boxes and decorate your home in a way that matches your personality. When the furniture has been moved in, you can relax and be satisfied in the knowledge that your luxury home is finally finished!

Quick Tips for Building Your Custom Tucson Luxury Home

While the previous information should cover most of your bases, there are some quick tips that may help you avoid some costly mistakes.

  • It’s essential that you know exactly what you want before the project officially gets underway. If you have no idea about the number of rooms you want or the types of materials you would like to use, the process can take longer to complete than you want.
  • Make sure that any contracts you sign are detailed and don’t include any surprises in small writing.
  • Contracts should detail what services are going to be performed as well as an estimated timetable.
  • When hiring architects, designers, and builders, always check their credentials and obtain references that will allow you to speak to past customers of the architect or builder.
  • Visit the build site frequently. Check at least once every week to ask any questions and get updates on the progress that’s been made.


Building a custom luxury home in Tucson can be a complex process but with the right tools and team, it can be an enjoyable and exciting process! If you are looking to purchase or sell a custom luxury home — or are looking to begin your journey of building your own — contact Susanne Grogan of Grogan & Grogan Tucson Luxury Real Estate today and we’re more than happy to assist you with the process or guide you on the path to Tucson Real Estate success!