If you’re on the hunt for a quality home builder but have never built before, it can be hard to know what to look for. To make it easier to narrow down the field and find the best builder for your project, here are some important things you should look for before signing on the dotted line.
Type of build
Every build is different and most builders specialise in a particular type of home build—and for good reason. A knockdown and rebuild project is very different to a renovation, extension or heritage restoration project, in the same way a custom build is completely different to purchasing an off-the-plan home design.
Each type of build comes with a unique set of challenges, so it’s important you select a builder who has expertise in your specific type of building project. The procedures and techniques used by volume builders will differ significantly from smaller boutique companies, so you’ll be much better off if you select a builder who specialises in your type of build.
It’s also important to know what services you need from your builder. If you already have your plans drawn up by an architect or draftsperson it’s likely you only need a builder to manage the construction of your home, however if you don’t really know where to begin, you may be better off looking for a builder who provides complete end-to-end design and construction services.
If you’re not experienced enough to be responsible for drawing up contracts, seeking the required building permits and approvals and overseeing management of the project, make sure you choose a builder who can manage all of this for you.
Licenced and insured
This is an absolute must for every type of home build. While the licencing and insurance requirements will differ based on where you’re building, it’s important you check that your builder holds all the required licences for the type of work they’re doing and has a sufficient level of insurance to cover you in the case something unforeseen happens along the way.
While some newer, less-established builders may try to entice you with grandiose promises and an attractive price tag, it’s important you select a company that will be able to deliver on their promises. Before signing a contract with a builder, make sure you find out how much experience they have and if they’ve worked on similar projects in the past. It’s also worthwhile asking if you can view their portfolio of previous projects to ensure they can back up their claims.
Past performance is generally a good indicator of future performance, so it may also be a good idea to do a little research and read any reviews previous customers have written about their experience with them.
You might uncover some valuable insights about the quality of the build, how they managed any defects or issues, their level of service including how frequently they provided progress reports and updates, and whether they were able to build to schedule and budget. While you should of course take some reviews with a grain of salt, they may prove to be more helpful than you think.
Whether you’re looking for the best home builders in Melbourne or simply looking for someone who can get the job done to a decent quality, on time and to budget, this criteria should get you well on your way to finding the right builder for your project.