Building a home?
Choose a contractor that cares about you and listens to what you want in your dream home. We recommend that you talk with more than one contractor. Every builder will offer different ideas and have different knowledge based on their individual preferences and experiences. Here are things to consider when choosing potential builders for your project:
-Consider your needs and desires. Are you looking for an artisan who pays close attention to details; or are you more concerned with getting your home built quickly and under budget?
-Compare allowances for items such as cabinets, flooring, lighting and plumbing fixtures – are the amounts realistic? Some builders put in lower amounts for allowances so their bid will appear lower, but in the end you pay more, or are forced to choose items of lesser quality.
-Is your builder up-to-date on building science and sustainable building practices? Even if you don’t want a “green” house, there are many energy efficient products that will save you money through the years, and will cost very little, or sometimes no more than their less efficient counter parts.
-Make sure the contractor you choose is licensed in the state where you plan to build and has general liability insurance and any other credentials required in your area.
-Does your contractor of choice keep up to date on new trends and building products? Do they have any NAHB (National Association of Home Builders) Designations? Are they a member of your local home builders’ association? Doing these things shows that the contractor is a professional and is continually striving to be one of the best in their field.
-Consider the resale value of your home. You may ask why you should care about resale since you are building your dream home and plan to live there forever, but at some point all homes are sold. You do not want to over-build for the neighborhood. Many builders only look at their bottom line and not yours. As the saying goes “You don’t make money when you sell your home, you make money when you buy it!”
-Is it easy to communicate with the builder? Do you feel that the builder shares the same vision as you for your home? Do they offer suggestions and/or alternatives to your plan, so that you will make the most informed decisions?
-Don’t believe everything you see on TV – HGTV is great and fun to watch, but like most TV shows, many times they are not based in reality.
Do your homework, gather your information, and make sure that you are comparing “apples to apples” – but in the end follow your gut! You will be working closely with your builder for several months and it will be a much more enjoyable process, and hopefully less stressful, if you get along well with your contractor.
We would love to talk with you about your next building project and see if we would be a good fit. Even if we’re not – hopefully we can at least give you a few ideas to consider.