Building and owning your own home is likely one of the largest financial decisions you will have to make, and no matter what kind of home builder you choose to go with, you will want to do your homework. You likely will have a list of questions and desires for your particular home, but just as important as the items you want in the home is the person putting them there. Approach each builder with the same set of questions about their business and home building process, and make sure that they can provide information on the following questions.
Ask for Referrals
“Do you have past customers that I can speak with?”
Just as important as what the builder has to say about themselves is what past customers have to say. Find out from them what the building process was really like, and anything that they would have done differently or wish that they had known ahead of time.
Understand the Communication Style
“What is communication like throughout building your home?”
You hear it all the time, but communication really is key. Find out what the communication process is like before and during the project. If the home builder has been hard to get a hold of or takes their time returning calls in the beginning, don’t expect that to change during the process as things get busier. A good builder will ensure that you have a direct line of communication to your project manager and will have software in place that updates you on all aspects of your project during the planning process and carries throughout your entire project.
Establish their Insurance Coverage
“What licenses do you have and can you provide proof of insurance?”
This should go without saying, but these days you can never be too careful. Make sure any home builder you are considering is properly bonded and insured and is able to easily provide you with any requested documentation.
Find out about a Warranty
“What happens if there’s an issue after all the work has been completed?”
Find out what the builder offers as their standard warranty timeframe and what is included. And if anything stops working after you move in, who and how do you contact them?
Ensure they Build in Your Location
“What is the area that they build within?”
You want to make sure that your builder is located within an easily accessible distance from your build site. They should be able to easily and quickly be on site or accessible if any issues arise.
As Always: Trust Your Gut
“Does this custom builder make me feel comfortable?”
This is one you’ll need to ask yourself. If you take a meeting for an initial home building consultation and there seems to be something off, trust that instinct. Nobody’s perfect, not all meetings go perfectly smoothly, and small issues can be corrected early…but take note of your initial thoughts coming out of that first introduction. You’ll be working with these people for a long time, and if issues aren’t addressed early or worse – they aren’t addressed at all – you’re likely in for a difficult time with these builders.
The pros at J&J have decades of experience in all aspects home construction and emphasize client relationships and clear communication. We look forward working with all of our clients, and hope to hear from you soon!