5 Questions to Ask Your Builder
Building a new custom home is an exciting experience, but it can also be a little intimidating. An important first step in building a home starts with choosing your builder. Often, folks begin their initial questions to a potential builder by asking about cost per square foot and whether or not they can supply their own trades or suppliers to save money. These questions only scratch the surface on what a homebuyer should consider to ensure a positive building experience.
To get you started, here are 5 initial questions to ask your builder as you begin your journey:
Can I walk through some of your recently built homes and meet the owners?
A solid, reputable builder will have no problem providing a prospective client with a list of past customers. It’s a good idea to have the builder connect with each name on the list to inform them they may be contacted. Past customers will be able to tell you if the builder was organized and pleasant to work with. Find out if their home was finished to their expectations, on budget, and on time. Before you leave, consider asking “Is there anything else I should be asking or you want me to know?”
Who will be in charge of building my home each day?
A dedicated lead carpenter assigned specifically to your home from groundbreaking to finish will be able to consistently answer your questions throughout construction and maintain communication with scheduled trades and suppliers. While there can be occasional lulls in the process, your go to person will always be available to keep you updated on the timeline and anticipated progress.
Are you a member of your local Home Builders’ Association?
As a member of a Home Builders’ Association, your builder has committed his or her self to a Code of Ethics which is based on principles of fairness, integrity, and client satisfaction. Membership is an indication of professionalism, dedication to the business of home building, and planning to be in business for the long term.
What is your home building experience?
It takes dedication and commitment to stay current with all the details of building a solid home. Whether a builder has 5 or 25 years of experience, a good builder will honestly share details of his or her business background, construction training, and what sets him or her apart from others. An experienced builder will confidently tell you what he or she can do for you and for how much.
How often will I receive an updated budget and schedule?
Let’s face it, your most valuable commodities are your time and your money. A common complaint made by many homebuyers is that they are frequently unsure of how much money is still needed for completion and how much longer the construction will take. By staying in touch with your budget, you will be able to make ongoing decisions on materials and finishes. Regular schedule updates will assist you in knowing when to anticipate completion. An important key to a smooth construction project is a builder who provides ongoing, easy to understand reports to clients.
Choosing the right builder is just as important as choosing the right design for your home. A good relationship with your builder will last long after the home is complete and throughout the warranty period.