Selecting Your House Design

The process depends on whether you are building in one of our existing subdivisions or on a strand alone country lot.


In a subdivision we have a set of model designs that comply with the subdivision plan set out by the developer and the municipality.

McDonald Homes will make these designs available to you, this will assist in the decision of selecting a house design that is more suited to each individual lot in the subdivision. These designs can be altered to suit individual layout preferences.

Custom / Country Homes

The first consideration in designing a country home are the features of the lot and what style of home is more suited to the lot.

i.e. is the lot suited to a walkout basement? If so, is a front, rear or side walkout?  Where should the septic and well be located? Are there natural heritage features on the lot that need to be protected and what setbacks if any are required from the conservation authority?

The list is endless and each location has its own set of challenges and obstacles, no two lots are the same. So, before any house designs can be drawn, WE NEED TO FIRST FIND THE LOT.

Once the lot has been found, McDonald Homes has a library of designs that can be reviewed and altered to suit. Each country home is custom designed by one of our in-house designers / drafts people through meetings and in consultation with the customer.


Once the house design has been finalized in both the Subdivision and Custom/Country builds we can then proceed with the next step in the process which is the selections meeting.

Selection meeting

This is the fun part……

In the selections meeting we establish the exterior and interior finishes and colour pallets.

These meetings are usually lengthy and can span several hours. We encourage customers to consider what finishes and colours they are interested in prior to the meeting – spend time walking around your current home and muse over what you do and do not like about it.

During these meetings we prepare a complete package of everything in the home, such as:

  • Electrical layouts
  • Kitchen layouts (cabinetry and countertops)
  • Bathroom layouts
  • Plumbing fixtures and fittings
  • Flooring type and colour
  • Paint colours
  • Trim features
  • Door styles
  • Exterior siding and/or masonry

As a standard McDonald Homes uses only quality materials and finishes included in the base price of our homes. However, this meeting is also your opportunity to consider and add desired upgrades.

The entire purpose of this meeting is the development of a home package detailing everything that will be going into your home.

All meetings are held during our standard business hours of 8am to 4pm Monday to Friday. We recommend that you limit the number of people that attend this meeting. In our experience this simplifies the decision-making process. Our designers have extensive experience in colour and finish selections and will be able to guide you through the process.

This process is meant to be fun…………. not stressful.



After the selection meeting, your project coordinator will:

  • Confirm the pricing of any upgrades requested during the meeting
  • Proceed with designing a kitchen layout
  • Proceed with designing an electrical layout

Once the process is complete internally, you will be provided with a username and password for ‘Buildertrend’. We use this website to share all the details on the home, such as:

  • The agreement of purchase and sale;
  • Deposit details;
  • Designs and drawings;
  • Selection package;
  • Job summary;


When the upgrade pricing has been prepared, your project coordinator will share a listing with photos, a description and pricing for your review. You will then be able to approve or decline the upgrade.

Once the upgrade listing has been finalized the project coordinator will update the selection package, drawings and layouts in preparation for the Confirmation Meeting.

We recommend that you review, for accuracy, the final package prior to the Confirmation Meeting.

Confirmation Meeting

The confirmation meeting is held approximately 1-3 weeks after the initial selection meeting.

This meeting is designed to review and sign off on the final designs, layouts and selections that will go into the home.

These confirmations form part of a final package that is prepared for you, permit applications as well as our site supervisors, field staff and sub-contractors.

This is an important meeting because the accuracy of the documentation is crucial to ensure that expectations are on par with the final home.

Typically, these meetings are between 1 and 4 hours.

Once this package is prepared, we are now able to move forward with the construction phase of the house.

The design of the home, the selection process and final Confirmation Meeting have a fairly significant impact on the length of the build, as we can only move forward with permit applications once the designs and mechanical layouts have been finalized. If this process is delayed then it may impact the closing date noted in your agreement of purchase and sale.

Selection Changes

We encourage all changes to be made before or at the Confirmation Meeting.  Once packages have been issued to the site supervisors, field staff and sub-contractors it becomes more difficult to make any changes.

An administrative charge as well as any material and labour costs associated with any minor changes made to original design could be incurred after the Confirmation Meeting.

Changes will only be implemented when a change order request form has been completed on Buildertrend by the project coordinator.  Once the change order has been approved by the customer this information will be distributed to the appropriate person(s).

Please be advised that not all changes will be possible.

Site visits

Site visits are to be approved and scheduled by McDonald Homes only. Two visits are allowed during construction of the home: prior to drywall and after drywall stages- a McDonald Homes representative must be in attendance with the customer. The Pre-delivery inspection at the end of the build is not included in these approved site visits

Additionally, please be advised that you are visiting a site under construction and it is your responsibility to take precautions to be safe

Pre-Delivery Inspection

The pre-delivery inspection (PDI) usually occurs in the last week of the build approaching your closing date.

During this inspection we will guide you through important maintenance procedures, mechanical component information and point out the special features of your home.

You will also be provided with a checklist to confirm, document and detail any outstanding or incomplete items and/or cosmetic deficiencies.

An overview of the Tarion warranty is given to you at this time, along with a package including important paperwork and a USB with electronic copies of warranties, guidelines and information packages.

McDonald Homes provides every new homeowner with a complimentary dehumidifier and humidistat to help manage moisture levels in your home.

These inspections can be anywhere from 2-4hrs. Please be prepared to have this time available as it is an important part of the process.  Since a variety of items are discussed at this inspection, we recommend that you do not bring friends and family to this meeting. We ask that you wait to show your home for when you take possession.


Delivery of appliances can happen anytime after the PDI and keys will be exchanged on the day of closing.


All new homes built by McDonald Homes have a 7-year warranty registered with Tarion.

Tarion is an independent organization that has been empowered by the Ontario Government to administer and enforce the Ontario New Home Warranties Plan Act and Regulations.

During the PDI, you will be given a certificate of completion and possession (CCP), which details your home enrollment number with Tarion.

The warranty coverage is outlined at the PDI and an electronic copy of the homeowner information package and the construction performance guidelines are given to the customer on a USB, for easy reference.

Different components of the home have different warranty coverages.

See the below link to Tarion’s website which provides summary of your homes warranty coverage: