The opportunity to build a gorgeous custom home generally happens only once-in-a-lifetime and is the result of years of hard work, coupled with a well-deserved dream. In both its esthetic and practical considerations, this new home will be a reflection of your personal taste and unique style and is not a project that should be hurried into or taken lightly.
That’s why it is especially important to find an experienced custom home builder who is more than willing to thoroughly discuss all aspects of the project with you in advance, and who won’t rush you through any stages of the planning process. In essence, the pages of the book are invitingly blank. To fill them in, you want to blend your own vision with the creative ideas and advice of a skilled and approachable custom home builder. One who understands that this project is a huge decision with a significant impact on many areas of your life, including your budget.
What to Look for in a Custom Home Builder
A reliable custom home builder would typically offer a feasibility plan as part of their services, which would include zoning and appropriate background checks in your city to determine and secure the necessary permits for the planned construction.
Here are some other important things to look for and questions to ask:
- Financial stability. These days it is more important than ever to check the financial stability of the prospective custom home builder. You want to be reassured that the company will not only be around to complete the design and construction of your home, but also to address any issues with the home that may arise in the future. A good gage of financial stability is how long they have already been in business.
- Q: Does the custom home builder have worker’s compensation and general liability insurance? Without such coverage, the home owner could be personally liable for any damages or injuries incurred on the premises during construction.
- Experience. Ask for references of past work, and about the previous experience and expertise of the custom home builder’s subcontractors. Find out what parts of the project will be subcontracted to others and what work will the custom home builder be doing with his own forces. Don’t lose sight of the fact that your custom home builder requires superb project management skills and therefore should therefore display competence and leadership in this role.
- Q: Has the custom home builder you are considering built homes in the proposed price range, and of comparable size and quality level? It is important to check out the builders reputation and past work.
Custom Home Builders and Budget Plans
- Q: Is the entire project planned, priced and scheduled completely in advance? As the client, you will need to make many decisions and choices and, while changes sometimes unavoidably occur, careful and detailed pre-planning reduces the occurrence of “change order” surprises.
- Q: How does the custom home builder charge for its services? The two main methods are “fixed fee for service “ and “Cost plus” There are benefits and disadvantages to both so it is important to have them fully explained so you can choose which one would be best for your project.
Chosen Custom Home Builder and the Right Rapport
A custom home builder may have all the necessary credentials on paper, but do consider the ease of your rapport with them, as well. You will be working closely with the company for a number of months and the value and importance of mutual trust and respect can’t be underestimated.
Because of the attention to detail and quality that is demanded when building a custom home, it is essential to find builders who clearly understand your needs and expectations and can ensure that you will be expertly guided every step of the way. To feel absolutely confident in embarking on a dream home project that makes an individual statement you can be proud of, look for the custom home builder who meets your criteria and can answer all of your questions to your complete satisfaction.
Doug Kerr is the owner of Kerr Construction in Vancouver. With over 25 years of experience in the renovation and new home construction business, he has developed the Kerr System for designing and building. With this Design/Build system he has helped hundreds of clients achieve their dream homes while also winning multiple national and provincial building and renovations awards. Being a former world-class athlete…” Read more.
Creative Commons Attribution: Permission is granted to repost this article in its entirety with credit to Kerr Construction.Tags: custom home Builder