Thursday, April 14, 2011

Benefits to building with Ryan Homes

When we decided a few months ago to start the process with Ryan Homes, I asked questions, got advice, and went online to do research. I quickly realized a lot of what is online, for any company in any business, is negative. After all, it is mostly un-satisfied customers who to take the web, the satisfied ones simple just go about their lives. I did run across a blog ThrifyAmy was writting about her experience and it set something off inside me. I would blog about my experience too. The good, the bad, the ugly. I would be truthful, and let others draw their own conclusions.

And so, my blog was started. =)

Since starting this blog, I have done a little bit of research and from what I learned, there are definite benefits to building with Ryan Homes, and a draw back or two.


1. All Ryan Homes are Energy Star homes. They meet and/or exceed the government standards for this. Did you know they have to pass an inspection to qualify for this? Your house will have to pass too. And when it does, can you say "tax write-off"? =) There are also loans out there, "green loans", for homes like this. Our local credit union has one, and it's amazing. Check into this and do your research!

2. We were told to make sure to put in our contract that we wanted a pre-dry wall inspection. It's there, we provide the inspector and pay the fee. But I have learned that Ryan has a pre-dry wall meeting with every customer. You get to walk through the home with your PM (project manager)and look at everything and address any concerns you have before the dry-wall is put up. This is STANDARD!

3. They don't build "inventory homes" (homes that are just built and sit there until they are sold). They only build a home once a contract has been made with the customer. I like this. It means there are not a lot of empty homes sitting around waiting for young, rebellious, teenagers to do with as they wish.

4. Ryan homes is one of the top 10 builders in the USA. And some sites list them as in the top 5. Did you know that? They are able to build homes in approximately 3-4 months vs. 6-12. Everything is pre-cut at local plants and then shipped to the site. This process allows Ryan to pass savings onto their clients/customers.

5. Post sale meetings!!! Yup, you read that right. Ryan meets with you 30 days after you move in to address any issues you have, and fix them (does a door stick? floor squeak?). This is only the first of 2 meetings.
The second takes place around the 10-11 month mark. This meeting is also to address any concerns that have come up with in your first year in the home, and get those fix if needed (example: nail pops in the wall). How many builders out there offer these? Many will just hand you the keys at closing and then "good luck to you".

6. The Ryan Homes bloggers!! I have met such a wonderful community of people online that offer you real support, answer your questions, and are GENUINELY excited for you because they are going through it all too. They are amazing.

However, I there is one draw back I have found. I call it "nickle and dimeing you". Ryan homes gives you 2 phone jacks, 2 tv jacks. The dinning room I believe comes with a light, and there is florescent in the kitchen that comes standard. All other rooms come with a switch on the wall to turn a light you have plugged in. You want over head lighting (or more fans), you have to pay for the pre-wire. Then if you want Ryan to put in the lights, you to pay for those too. They are NOT included. =/

We opted for a light rough-in (pre-wire in the ceiling) for the study and for 3 more fan rough-ins in the other 3 bedrooms and have one in the Den and Bedroom. However, we are NOT paying Ryan to supply these. We already have 2 fans. I'm not sure if Ryan will supply the one for the Den and Master Bedroom or not. But it's slightly cheaper to do it on our own, plus, we have a hook-up who should be able to help with cost. =)

So, I'm not real happy about the having to pay for lights ON TOP of rough-ins. But so far, that is my ONLY complaint. =) I think if you are paying for the rough-in, they should be included. I don't want to pay for fixtures in my mortgage payment. You know?

So there you go. My honest take on building with Ryan Homes.

Bloggers, feel free to fix any mistakes I may have made and comment about your experiences!


  1. Great summary! I would add one additional negative (although it usually isn't a real problem). You have limited selections for materials and are pretty locked into their set floorplans. They have good choices and this is part of what keeps cost down. However, it might be a problem if you already know something specific that you want.

  2. I agree, they do nickel and dime you! Although if this is the only negative...I'll take it. Especially, since Ryan is not the only builder to do so.

  3. Shara is right about most of the floorplans being pretty locked in. Most of them that I have looked at give you a couple of choices for the master bedroom and most have a morning room option, but not too much more.

    Regarding the ceiling lights...that is not just Ryan Homes that does that. While most people probably add them there is probably also a decent amount who don't. While the rough-ins seem a little on the expensive side, when you think about what you get it probably isn't. With the ceiling fan rough-ins you get beefed up supports in the ceiling to hold the extra weight and wires and switches to handle the fan and light individually. When you think about the cost of materials then what Ryan Homes charges is on the expensive side, BUT think about what it would cost you to try and do it after the fact...snaking wires through walls and trying to figure out what circuit you can tap into.

    One other suggestion I would make...when you negotiate your initial price, try and include as many upgrades and options in the initial starting price...sometimes you can negotiate additional "incentives" if you put everything on your list to start.

    The other thing I will say is that all the upgrades are supplied to you in one big list including prices for each, so you kind of know ahead of time what you are getting into.

  4. I think they have pretty good option choices. Another neg. was only 3 choices of cabinets for the kitchen. Maple, REALLY DARK cherry, or the off white. I would love to see Ryan offer a redder cherry also, along with the almost black one. (it's not black, but it is super dark). But I think the color schemes are good, lots of granite to chose from and lighting (should you chose to do that). The flooring contractors had more choices than you can wrap your head around! lol

  5. I also agree with trying to put as many options as you can in with your offer. We had some in on our original offer, but then added more after the fact. lol

  6. I love this and yes ryan homes do have a lot of postives and benefits! I also do like how give you a color selection of outside of your house color of shutters, doors, siding and it is not limited there is a range. I agree with the lights, rough ins I wish they would give us an option to install it instead of us having to do it ourselves.

    Thanks for reminding me of the the benefits with ryan homes. :)

  7. The cabinet and counter top selections vary by area. We had about 8 different cabinet choices ranging from white to dark cherry - there were three maples and two different cherry, but the off white you are getting was not a choice for us. I also saw one blogger had a black and tan granite that was really nice and that was not a choice for us or it would be in my house instead of uba tuba :-)

  8. Great summary! We had a lot more selections for cabinet and counter tops, but on the other hand, we don't get the Guardian meeting to customize the wiring to the extent a lot of others do. I would definitely mention your complaint about the lighting to your sales rep & PM...our sales rep said that customer feedback is the main source for ways to improve their services in the future. The morning rooms used to be a lot smaller around us, and now the new ones being built are quite large...all thanks to customer input!

  9. Good stuff Noey. I think Ryan needs to have the same options across the board and I believe they should sod and landscape every yard!

  10. Thanks for this! I remember when we were looking for builders and feeling so discouraged at all the negative press online!!! I'm so glad I found this blogging community! I would also say a positive is being involved with the actual process of building your own home. Being able to see it being built, to see the work that goes into it, and to be a part of it is really something special! I think we appreciate it more!

  11. I agree with what everyone else said, especially india I sooooo..... wish my yard had sod and was landscaped.

  12. I don't have much to add. You were right on as were all of the additional comments. I totally agree with India, I wish things were the same across the board. I get a little envious of some of the great choices and selections some of you have!

  13. I agree with all of you - my sales rep at Ryan told me that they don't negotiate - I wish they would make up their mind, especially since I saw some of you get great deals :( Oh well - still thinking of purchasing from them...

  14. Can you negotiate pricing with Ryan?

  15. We negotiated! We were told that Ryan has a DP (direct profit) number. No one knows what that number is. And it varies depending on the model home you pick, lot, and options you choose.

    You can go in, pick it all out, and make an offer to Ryan. They will counter it with their "final" offer of what they are willing to do with the options you have. If you make any changes, you can re-negotiate.

    We negotiated for a lower price and additional closing costs. We got it.

    You never know unless you try. No harm in trying, right? Especially if you can save a few grand.


    1. Noey- where were you, and when? I'm trying to negotiate with our Ryan homes rep and he says "all I can do is present what's available". I understand the market isn't as tight now, there are lots of new orders in our area, but he seemed to not know what negotiating is!
      Pittsburgh, PA

    2. We're in the Charlotte, NC area. =)

      We put a lot of our options in our house up front and made an offer. They countered and we took it. =) Every option we added after this fact was added at the price quoted on the option list though. No more discounts after this.

      I'm sorry. Some have had success in negotiating price, others not so much. I wish you luck!

    3. Hi Noey - I am also in the Charlotte area and am going in to potentially sign a contract and firm up pricing. Were you represented by a buyer's agent or did it on your own?