HOW TO CHOOSE A HOME-BUILDING CONTRACTOR
How to find a certified Green Builder?
It’s not common to find a reliable ‘green home listing’ or ‘green pages’ in specific regions, so choosing a quality general contractor with experience building efficient homes can be tricky. Here are some tips of where to look, what to look for, and what to avoid
There are no certified ‘builders’, only certified buildings;
Any builder who has successfully navigated a performance-rating system would be knowledgeable in the area of green home building, so is a good bet when searching for a contractor who knows how to correctly weather seal & air seal windows and doors, for example, which is an essential part of building a more efficient home.
What questions to ask when choosing a Green builder?
Below are a few good questions to start with, and many of the answers you should hear from candidates are hyper-linked.
The answers you receive will quickly indicate the type of builder you are speaking with; either they will redirect, dismiss or dodge the question, or they will answer with confidence. If you are told any of the following – ‘you want your walls to breath’, ‘you don’t want a house to be too airtight’ or ‘building code is all you need‘, then you will know you are dealing with a base-level builder who wants to stay the course, not a player in the higher league of performance building.
Architects, designers and technologists:
Another avenue is to begin with a home designer who has a experience with performance homes, since they may have local builders they can recommend. The same goes the other way; if you find a builder you really connect with, ask if they have preferred designers they can recommend
How to Pick the Right Custom Home Builder for You
Setting out to find a new home has its challenges, especially if there’s no new homes on the market that totally satisfy what you’re looking for in a new home. If this is the case, then finding a custom home builder to create your perfect home is a great approach for you
So how do you find the custom homebuilder that will bring your dream home to life? It’s imperative to find the right custom builder as this person or group will be charged with creating the home you’ve always wanted in precise detail. With that in mind, it’s best to have a detailed list of things to consider while selecting a custom home builder.
Determine what you want in a custom home
The first part of the process is to jot down exactly what you want in your custom home. It can range from having a different layout for one or two rooms in the home or having a more intricate home plan
Make list of potential builders
Once you’ve outlined the home that you want built, it’s time to put together a list of potential builders that you want to contact. Reach out to the homebuilders association that is local to you – or in the location you’d like your custom home built in — for a list to choose from. There is also the Homeowners for Better Building (HOBB), which is another resource for finding custom home builders. NewHomeSource.com also has landing pages for each custom homebuilder it works with to make your custom home building process a breeze
Contact custom homebuilders
At the outset when you begin to make contact with custom builders, note how accessible they are. It’s important that the builder needs to be available whenever you have questions or concerns before and during the process of construction. While they’re not supposed to be at your beck and call, returning phone calls and emails in a timely manner is important. If your builder seems to take too long to get back to you even on minor things or doesn’t respond at all, that’s something that should be a disqualifier.
How to choose the right builder for you
When you decide to build your next home, rather than buy it, there’s one thing you simply have to get right: choosing the builder.
Picking the right builder has the potential to make or break the entire experience for you, so it’s something you don’t want to rush
Check their folio
You’ve no doubt got some idea about the type and style of home you’re hoping to build, so it’s important to find a builder whose skills best align with your plans. Paxino says this part of the process is usually easy, as most builders will have their projects displayed on their websites, or they will be able to provide you with a catalogue of homes they’ve built previously.
Find or ask for references
Some of the best information to assist you in selecting your builder can be gleaned by speaking to people who’ve dealt with them before. “You might be skeptical about who they’re going suggest – whether it’s their brother or someone they know,” Paxino says.
Go the extra mile
You’re going to be paying your builder hundreds of thousands – possibly millions – of dollars to construct your home, so a few hours spent doing some extra reconnaissance will be more than worth your while
Let’s talk costs
There’s no point in gathering building quotes first, Paxino says, because many of the builders may not be appropriate for your project. So do your research first, narrow the field, and only then start asking for prices from the builders who’ve made your cut. And remember: cheapest isn’t always best.
Tips for Choosing Your New Home Builder
Choosing the right builder for your new home is a big task. They’re going to be in charge of a major construction project for you – and that’s a big undertaking. The builder you select needs to have all the tools necessary to build you a home that will last.
They Hire the Right Team
When you build a house, you’re bringing together all these different pieces and fitting them together like a puzzle. The right builders finds the right pieces to make that happen. They choose the best electricians, plumbers, welders, and contractors to make your home safe and strong. The sub trades they choose have a direct effect on the quality of the finished product
They Talk, and They Listen
The most important thing you can do in any project, whether it’s a full build, or a small renovation is to communicate with your team. Good builders will keep the lines of communication wide open and transparent. You want to know if there are delays in the project, and why. A good builder will tell you these things – and how they plan to fix them.
They Chase Outside Certification
Each builder has their own set of standards when it comes to construction – but the truly great ones will qualify for third party certifications that let you know that their homes are built right.
Holmes Approved Homes
Not just any builder can join this program – it’s actually Mike and his team that sources us to join the program! With a Holmes Approved Home, you’re buying a home that was built using the best techniques, practices, and technologies. Not only that, all Holmes Approved Homes go through a third party inspection provided by Mike’s own team of home inspectors, that let you know that you’ve got a home that was built right, from the ground up
Choosing A Builder
The common mistakes that can cause heartache
Do you plan to build your own home? Perhaps you’re looking to renovate or extend your existing home. Either way, there are many ways to make the right and wrong decisions when choosing a builder.
Get some advice
When choosing a builder, a good place to start is by asking any family and friends that have hired a builder to construct their home or renovate. Chances are you probably would have heard the stories, whether the experience was amazing or a nightmare. Be wary of going through friends of friends because they may not necessarily be builders you can put a lot of faith in. The builder may feel like they’re “doing someone a favour” and, because of that, they may place a lower priority on the job and take longer to start work.
Licences and insurance
Whether you’re going through a home builder or you’re designing your own home or renovation works with help from an architect, it’s important that you choose a builder that is licenced, registered and insured. You should be wary of builders that either refuse or don’t make it clear upfront that they are legally permitted to be involved in building and construction.
Experience and skills
Really question whether they have the skills you need. If they only have experience in renovations and extensions, they’re not the right choice for your home. It’s also important to note that builders who have only built residential properties in the past may not necessarily have a good grasp of the complexities of extensions and renovations.
Portfolio and references
First of all, check out their previous jobs and, if possible, have a physical walk-through of a home they’ve built. Even consulting an engineer to walk through the property may be worth the cost if you’re serious about choosing the right builder. Builders may be quick to offer you the contact details of a handful of selected clients but they may just offer a biased opinion. It’s best to ask to speak with their most current clients, particularly those in the middle of the building stage