Building a house is not a small task. And if you thought buying a house was complicated, be prepared for a whole new level of stress when building your own. But it’s worth it all – because as soon as you step through the front doors of a house you designed, that no one else has lived in before you, it becomes a home.
So it’s important you choose the right partner to make that dream home a reality. There are a lot of home builders out there – some good, some not so good. And it’s up to you to work out which is which, and who you trust to build that home up from nothing. So before you get started selecting your builder, we have a few things you should ask your builder – and yourself.
Of course, before you start asking your home builder any questions, you need to ask yourself some first. Mainly, you need to sit down and work out exactly what it is you want from this house. What are your must-haves, and what are some areas you might be willing to compromise on? What is your budget, and do you have any contingency plans in place in case the project goes over? Do you have a timeline in mind, and is it realistic? Are you actually allowed to build what you want on the plot you have?
All of these answers will help you make sure you’re in front of the right kind of builder when you’re asking these questions, so you can be confident in your final decision.
Ask Your Builder
How long have you been in business? Sure, all builders might be capable of building amazing homes. But odds are a builder who has been around for a few years, with a couple dozen house builds under their belt and experience in handling multiple projects will be a better fit for you. We would generally recommend you opt for a well-established home builder, so that there is less risk of anything going wrong.
Do you have insurance? All business owners need insurance, but for builders that insurance is an essential. So any reputable builder will have it. Using a builder with all the right insurances means that even if something does go wrong with the build, you’re not out of pocket.
Do you offer a warranty? Once your home has been built, it is standard for the company who built it to offer a warranty. This is to cover any issues that might come up as the house settles in the first few years, so that you can get them fixed without any extra expense. Each company will offer a different warranty on their work, but you should look for one with at least 10 years.
Can I provide my own plans? This is where builders will differ. Some will prefer to work with the architects in drawing up plans from the start, some will have their own architect you have to work with, and others will be happy to just receive the plans and work from them. This question will help you find a builder that will fit into your planning process.
Do you build energy-saving homes? Most modern homes should have some form of energy saving technology built-in, to meet green requirements and initiatives in the construction industry. So find out what options are available to you. Will they offer solar panels, heat pumps, or electric vehicle charge points?
Who will be overseeing the build process? Will you be talking to a different person every time, or will you have a dedicated project manager for the build? How do you know if the project is running on track, if there are delays, or things that need your input? Communication is a really important part of building a home, so make sure you’re comfortable with the way your builder will communicate with you.
What’s the process before I get the keys? How will inspections work throughout the construction process? Will you be allowed to view the property at any stage, or only pre-agreed points? Will you get a walkthrough when it’s finished? Will the property be professionally cleaned before you get the keys? Will you get a chance to address any issues that need to be corrected or finalised?
Trust Your Gut
Above all though, make sure you pay attention to how you feel when you’re interacting with your builder. Everything from how they answer the phone to how they make you feel during a visit. This person and company will be responsible for building your future home – which is not only a huge amount of money, but also a very personal thing. You need to know you can trust them, and that they are making the effort to understand what you’re looking for. If they are really listening to you and responsive to your ideas, odds are you have a good builder on your hands.
At DNA Brickwork & Builders, we are always happy to answer as many questions as you can throw at us – including all of the ones above. We want you to feel completely comfortable and confident with your choice of builder, which is why you will get a dedicated project manager for your project from day 1. We can handle the whole project from beginning to end, keeping in contact with you through your project manager to ensure everything is going smoothly, and that you are happy with everything. If you would like to know more about how we work, please just get in touch with the team today.