Choosing the Right Builder
Building a new home, or renovating an existing one, can be one of the biggest decisions many people will make in their lives.
Therefore it’s important to choose a builder you are 100% comfortable with and confident they will deliver your project. There are many deciding factors to take into account when choosing the right builder.
Firstly, you need to do your due diligence. Ask for evidence that the builder has done similar jobs in the past, and ask for the details of past customers. Then talk to the people who have used the builder before, to get a clear idea of their experience. Don’t just rely on photos and testimonials of projects the builder has completed.
As you will be entering a long term relationship with your builder, trust, professionalism, transparency and good communication skills are also very important.
Get everything in writing
Builders nowadays are running professional businesses so the days of a handshake agreement are long gone. However, you need to ensure there is a written contract in place and a written warranty that details what is covered and for how long.
It is essential your builder holds workers’ compensation and liability insurance, and your contractors should be able to provide proof of these insurances. Your builder should also hold a builder’s warranty, which protects you should the builder default.
Request a quote
Building or renovating a home is a large investment of your time, and money, so it’s a good idea to know the total construction cost early on. Your finance approval and evaluation of options is dependant on your builders quote, so confirm exactly when this will happen from the beginning. It could save you time, unnecessary stress and issues later on.
Who is managing your project onsite
Most builders have a dedicated site supervisor who will be onsite throughout your project. However, smaller builders may not, so this is an important piece of information you need to know.
A site supervisor monitors quality control during construction, and is key to the smooth running and quality of your construction. They oversee any contractors working on your project and communicate with yourself and the builder – they’re pivotal to the project from start to completion.
You also want to find out the site supervisor’s credentials and experience, and the role they will play within the team.
When you first meet your potential builder, you should have a list of questions to ask, to ensure you get a very clear picture of what to expect from your relationship, the project and communication.
Are you a licenced builder?
Do you have Home Indemnity Insurance?
Are there any current or past building disputes with your company?
Have you ever been declared bankrupt?
How long will the building maintenance period last?
How will I be kept informed during the building process?
When will you be able to provide a quote for the project?
Who will be onsite to supervise the project and construction?
What is NOT included in your contract?