CAN you do it? SHOULD you do it?
In order to be happy with the process and the result, whether you are considering purchasing a resale home, building in an established neighborhood, OR building from scratch, the starting point is the same. Are you financially (and emotionally) prepared to do this.
Just because you can afford to build doesn't mean you should do it. In my almost two decades in the real estate business, I've worked with a lot of Buyers, and If I've learned one thing it would be that some Buyers are not good candidates for building. The thing one person thinks is fun and exciting, another Buyer will find stressful and overwhelming. If you are the type who loves walking through stories like Home Depot and Lowe's and reading 'How to" books. And you love looking at all the latest in fixtures, faucets, hardware and home technology. And if pouring over floor plans and reviews of the advantages of a tank-less hot water heater or solar heating, is the idea of a perfect weekend, then this project might be the highlight of your life. However, if the thought of doing any of this stuff sends you running the other way, you might want to step back a bit and think about it. If you don't want to make these types of decisions and yet you want to proceed, you'll need some help. But even with help, there will still be a lot of decisions only you can make.
For the sake of this discussion I'm going to split the conversation into two groups; Group one I'm calling "Custom Homes". These are truly built from scratch homes where you find the land, bring in an architect and builder and typically you will be holding the loan throughout the building process. Group two, for lack of a better name, I'm calling "Production Homes". This is a bit of a misnomer as there are many 'semi-custom' builders that allow you to make a ton of changes, but in this scenario, the builder has a variety of plans to choose from, and typically they have the lots to choose from, and the carry the loan through the building process.