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How to Successfully Build a New Home in Alaska

Building a new home in one of the coldest climates in the United States presents several unique challenges. In addition to finding a suitable lot, you must select an experienced builder and plan for a home that can handle the typical seasonal changes in the community you have chosen. Use the following guidelines to help you create a snug home that your family will enjoy for years to come.

Research Builders

Aside from location, your builder is the single most important detail that can affect both the appearance and performance of your home. Whether you are constructing in Juneau or Anchorage, you will want to find a contractor with experience and a portfolio of satisfied clients.

Many builders in Alaska work on a smaller scale than those in other states, building under 100 homes per year. Asking friends or potential neighbors about their building experience is a great way to begin gathering information.

Consider Climate

Today there are a multitude of ways to make a new home more energy efficient. From a high-efficiency furnace to low-e windows, you can substantially cut your utility cost by investing in materials that insulate against thermal transfer.

Understanding the local weather conditions and planning for them will not only help save you money in the long run, but also make your new home more comfortable. If you are building on permafrost in Anchorage, keep in mind that smaller structures built with minimal site disturbance is the preferable practice.

Get It in Writing

Whether you are building from scratch or purchasing a new residence, be sure to get all the terms of construction in writing and read all documents before adding your signature.



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