HOW TO CHOOSE A CUSTOM HOME BUILDER
You’ve decided to build a custom home from the ground up. That’s great news! You probably already have some awesome ideas about the windows, bathrooms, and the kitchen but—you haven’t found a builder yet. With so many custom home builders to choose from, it can be difficult to figure out where to start. Below, you will find some guidelines about how to choose the best builder for your project.
Find a Builder
If you are already working with a designer, they will most likely have connections to trusted builders. If not, reputable realtors can also be a source for recommendations. Checking with the local chapter of National Association of Home Builders is another option. Internet searches can be good for your initial list, but you will need to narrow it down using the other criteria below.
Have an Interview with the Builder
Just as employers interview potential candidates, you should interview the potential builders of your home. Preparing questions beforehand will ensure that you get the most out of the interview. Here are a few questions to consider asking during the interview: How are projects managed during construction? How will the quality of the subcontractors be verified? What is the timeline for completing the project? How will changes or unforeseen conditions be handled? What are terms of the warranty?
Check the Builder’s Portfolio
You know what you want, but can the builder actually build what you see in your head? If you have a certain style of home in mind, you need to make sure that the builder has completed similar projects in the past. Many builders have expertise in a variety of design styles, but you still need to diligently perform research. That goes double if you have something particularly special in mind.
Take a Tour of the Model Homes
If you really want to know the quality of a home builder, taking a tour of a model home is one of the best ways to find out. In the absence of a model home, you may be able to take a tour of a past client’s home. In any case, be sure to carefully note the quality of the home during the tour and whether or not it meets your standards.
Speak to Past Clients
A good indicator of how satisfied you will be with your new home is to look at the satisfaction rate of past clients. Many custom home builders will provide you with customer references, or they should be available upon request. Here are a few questions to ask past clients: What did you like/dislike about working with the builder? Would you recommend this builder to family or friends? What are the reasons you would or would not recommend this builder?
Searching through custom home builders to find the right one can take time. Be patient and follow the guidelines so that you can be sure that your new construction home is one that you can enjoy for years to come.