How to find the Right
for your Project
You should always meet with three to four builders in the area. Review their past work and level of knowledge not only in construction, but also the area and community. Ask for references, and if possible, speak to past clients of theirs. Pick homes you like from the builder’s website or that you have seen their sign in front of and ask to speak to that owner. If someone has had a pleasant experience building their home, then they will be happy to talk about it.
Meet Their References
Like you would for a job interview, a construction company will have a list of references for you to contact. Talk to the references in the area that had projects similar to yours. There’s a difference between a beautiful home that’s just been constructed, and one that people have lived in for a while, so speak to those references to get a better understanding of how their home has performed over time. Be sure to ask them their experience with the build process: Was the builder attentive to them? Was the project finished on time? Was the budget accurate and did it meet their needs? Was the process explained in advance so that they were aware of each step? These questions can provide valuable information about what kind of experience you can expect with your construction company.
Finding a lot
Finding the right lot goes beyond just picking somewhere with a great view. You want to pick a place with the maximum potential for your home. It’s always best to work with a builder and real estate agent when finding the right lot. Your builder should be honest with you about all requirements when it comes to bringing the lot up to building standards. There are a number of issues that can come up later if you don’t know what to look for when you initially purchase the lot. Every municipality has their own set of standards that can affect your ability to build the home of your dreams on a particular lot.
Having your builder involved in the design process can help ensure your ability to build your home within your budget. Square-foot pricing is not very accurate, and frequently people overdesign for their budget. Your builder can offer alternative methods for achieving your goals, while maintaining your budget. In the end, their involvement can expedite the project and save design costs by eliminating redesigns if you exceed your initial budget.
Get Estimates – Picking and Choosing
Probably the best evaluation of a construction company is how they compose and present their estimates. It’s important that an estimate is clear and easy to read. You should have a strong understanding of the materials being used, and what your allowances are anticipated to cover. Allowances are an area where contractors can underestimate the costs of finishes and products, resulting in a more attractive price but leading to costly upgrades during the construction process. Be sure your builder has a good understanding of your expectations before he prepares the estimate. If you have already chosen specific materials, your builder should be aware of your choices and make sure they are accounted for. Making building choices up front in terms of materials, windows, flooring, cabinets, etc., can help solidify costs and ensure your budget.
The common factor for all these steps is transparency. Your construction company should be transparent and helpful during the entire process. You deserve to have someone that will help you make the right decisions in order to ensure you are building the home of your dreams.