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Building a Custom Home: Quick Tips For Electrical Rough-In

Custom building is all about the details. You literally need to think about every aspect of functionality for your style of living. For our custom build, now that the roof is done, we have the electrician starting to mount and cut outlet boxes, install recessed lighting cans, and run the hard wires to where the electrical panel is located, and to all devices.


I thought I would share some tips that will help you during this phase of the build.

Do a Walk-Through with the Electrician Before They Start

These details have all been planned…right? Yes, specked and detailed on the electrical page of the architect’s drawings. I like to keep a close eye on the installation in the early phase to call out what you think you may have seen on the plan but may not be exactly how it was specked. Let’s face it…there are all these special symbols for outlets, fans, switches, lights; the schematic can make you blurry-eyed.

panel placment

The electrician is going to follow what the plan calls for – that’s what he does as a professional.

Think About Where Exactly You Want Those TV Outlets

I love a clean mount to the wall, with the no-visible-wires-look, for TV installs. In the living area, we cut out and recessed the outlets directly where the flatscreen will be mounted.


The larger opening to the right will be for the cable box and other components, such as blue ray or audio equipment. A piece of conduit connects the two for easy cable running if repairs or changes are needed. FYI…the plywood wall is a sheer wall and a relatively new county code.

Is That Recessed Light Really Where You Wanted it?

It is very easy to miss what the architect has designed for you or what you think you asked for.

lighting placment

Once the framed walls are up and you can walk the space, see where things are actually located. I can almost guarantee you will tweak the light locations. The kitchen and baths are the most vulnerable to change. Do you want the light in front of your work area or directly over your head? Little details, but hey…it’s your custom home…you make the call.  

Kitchen Rough-In is Subject to Many Building Codes

It boils down to, here is where an outlet must be located to meet code. Your only decision making contribution to the layout may be…do you want the outlet in or above the backsplash?

electrical rough

Remember to Stay Involved

These are just a few suggestions when it comes to custom building. Making changes at this stage of the project is way cheaper than if you find things are not what you expected after drywall. It’s a good idea to stay involved.

If you have any interest in building a home in Kona, please contact me. I will share with you my personal experience, from the ground up. Follow my blog to learn more about the building dreams in Hawaii.

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Ed Hays

September 19, 2017

I really like your work which you describe step by step. Good
I also have a similar website of custom buildings, for more info, please visit-

Jonah M.

July 30, 2020

Custom homes are a great way to get the most out of Maui’s beautiful views. Older homes and custom homes though have a serious issue though – Aluminum Wiring. Weather buying an existing custom made home or currently planning to build one, make sure your electricians don’t skimp on your wiring. Copper conductors are the best, least hassle wires any homeover and ask for.

Stay informed and know what to look for:

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