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Our Total Home Solution™ Process

Total Home Solution™ is the exclusive process Riverbend has developed to guide you seamlessly through all the stages of your timber home project. This overview illustrates the entire process and how Riverbend works with you to create your dream home.

Our Process - property site visit by riverbend

Before You Design Your Home

Before we begin the process of designing your custom home, there are some important factors for you to consider. Finding that perfect piece of land, determining when you want to build your dream home, and, of course, how you intend to finance it. Here are some things to consider in each of these areas as you begin your custom home journey.


We design your home to fit your site and your needs. When searching for land, here are some factors that impact the design of your timber frame home that you may want to consider.

  • Topography (slopes, nearby natural features)
  • View Corridors (which views do you want to highlight?)
  • Size and Shape of Lot
  • Sun Patterns
  • Location of Neighbors
  • Road Access (where your driveway will be located)


Creating your dream home takes time and is a process that you don’t want to rush. The process — from design to construction — can vary greatly. Here are some guidelines for your consideration:

2 or More Years Before You Start: Gather ideas and start to develop your design and layout preferences. A lot can change over time, so don’t worry about the details at this point.

1-2 Years Before You Start: If you haven’t already, now is the time to set an overall budget for the cost of the home, purchase land (if you haven’t already), and create a list of must-haves and wants for your design.

When You Are Ready to Start: Once you have executed a Design Development Agreement (DDA) with us, the design process begins in earnest. Your Riverbend team works with you to design your timber frame home based on your vision and your budget.

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Our Process - custom design timber frame home

Designing Your Home


Once you’re ready to start the design process with Riverbend and have signed a Design Development Agreement (DDA), your design meeting is scheduled. Prior to the meeting:

  • Your Riverbend client representative will visit your build site. (The architectural designer assigned to your project can also visit your build site for an additional fee, if you so desire.)
  • Provide us with a survey and/or topographical map of your land and build site for our use in designing your home.
  • Help us understand your vision for your home by sharing images, sketches, and other ideas you have gathered in your research.
  • Your Riverbend team will gather additional information about your property, such as relevant building codes, restrictions, or applicable CC&R from your Homeowners’ Association.

Conceptual Design

During the initial design meeting, you and your designer will align your overall budget for the home with your desired square footage, architectural styling, layout, and functionality in order to assess the cost feasibility of your project. The size of the home and its design complexity have the greatest impact on cost. In addition, your build site attributes and the level of finishes significantly affect the total cost of the home.

In the weeks that follow, your designer will create a complete conceptual design and present it to you, including a virtual reality presentation of the exterior and interior of the home. Learn more about our Design Process here.

At this point, our project manager will explain our range of construction solutions available to you, to assist you in determining which solution is best suited to your needs.

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Our Process - preconstruction process timber home


When you are satisfied with your conceptual design and the overall estimated cost to build your home and have signed a contract with Riverbend, our architectural designer will prepare a full set of construction drawings, which initiates the pre-construction phase of your project. During this phase, the following steps occur:

  • Our project manager works with you to select windows, doors, and other materials.
  • Riverbend works with a third-party structural engineering firm who reviews and stamps the plans to independently verify the structural integrity of your home.
  • Depending upon the construction solution you choose, our project manager works with you to select a general contractor to construct your home.
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Manufacturing starts with Riverbend’s fabrication your timber frame and structural insulated panels (SIPs). During the manufacturing phase:

  • The timber frame is fabricated precisely to the specifications set out in the engineered construction drawings.
  • The timber frame components are pre-fit at our facility prior to shipping to ensure the highest quality.
  • The SIP panels are manufactured at our facility according to the specifications set out in your engineered construction drawings.

Foundation Construction

Meanwhile, at your build site, you and your general contractor will:

  • Excavate for your foundation
  • Install Riverbend’s Advantage Insulated Concrete Forms (ICFs) — an integral part of Riverbend’s highly energy efficient structural shell
  • Pour concrete, backfill, and install the main floor deck, completing the foundation
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After your materials are shipped to your build site, the expert Riverbend crew will arrive and begin the timber frame installation.

Timber Installation

Installation of your timber frame structure by our professional crew ensures:

  • The timber frame is erected correctly and as quickly as possible.
  • The expert qualification of our installation crews allows problems that arise during installation to be quickly resolved.
  • That your builder doesn’t need to be an expert in timber framing in order to build your project, giving you more flexibility in choosing a builder.

SIP Installation

Following installation of the timber frame structure, one of Riverbend’s technical advisors works with your builder to install the SIPs. Constructing with SIPs:

  • Improves the speed of construction
  • Enhances indoor comfort
  • Dramatically improves energy efficiency of the home
  • Reduces job site waste
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Our Process - finishing touches custom timber frame home

Finish Construction

Once the structural shell is erected, you and your builder proceed with electrical, plumbing, mechanical, and finish construction. Depending upon the construction solution you choose, your Riverbend project manager can perform a series of inspections to ensure that construction is completed according to the plans and specifications called out in the drawings.

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A Team Approach

There are many stages during your timber frame home project, and each phase requires unique expertise. Riverbend uses a team approach to maintain a high level of service throughout your project. You’ll have direct access to each member of your team, which includes:

Your Client Representative

The in-house client representative is your first point of contact and advocate through the entire process.

Your Architectural Designer

The designer is responsible for the creation of your conceptual plan and construction drawings.

Your Project Manager

The project manager manages your timeline, coordinates with you and your builder during construction, and helps you select windows, doors, and other materials at Riverbend’s preferred pricing.

Need More Information?

Whether you’re looking for more information or would simply like to learn more about us and our services, don’t hesitate to contact us. Please follow the link below to access our online form or call us at 888.486.2363 in the US or 888.999.4744 in Canada. We look forward to hearing from you.

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