Companies try to sell you on their idea. It’s what they do. Sometimes, they’ll even convince you their concept is your idea. But isn’t that what makes marketing worthwhile? So, in the day and age of endless ads on TV, online, email, social media, radio, and magazines, how do we correctly choose the right company to fit our needs? Three words…Research, Research, and Research. Doing your homework up front, asking the right questions and getting to know your potential home builder will enable you to make the right choice when choosing your custom home builder for you, your family, and your wallet.
Do Your Research
• Reviews, References, and Reputation. When searching for a home builder, the amount of information available today can be a tremendous help. Look up online reviews. Keep in mind, no business is going to have 100% satisfactory results, however seeing how a company has handled any complaints can tell you a lot. Has the problem been addressed, and more importantly, resolved. How many reviews are there? Has the builder had more positive feedback than negative? Are references readily provided to you? And once they have, have you followed up with them? Reputation should be critical to the builder you ultimately choose.
• Communication. Followed by MORE Communication. From flooring to lighting to overall design, the amount of decisions that need to be made about your dream home is extensive. The communication should be equally comprehensive. You’re hiring a home builder because you don’t want to have to deal with 20 different vendors. Make sure the company you choose has one point person – your go-to for everything. All the information you receive and the requests you make should be funneled through this project manager. Being involved in all aspects of design and building will ensure proper instruction, with less opportunity for miscommunication and potentially expensive mistakes.
• Get Legal. The licensing and insurance required by builders vary from state to state. Warranties vary from product to product. Be sure to find out what is necessary for your area. Ask your builder for verification of all licenses and insurance they carry. A builders licenses and insurance eliminates any loss on your end in the event of an accident or damage during the construction of your home. Review your warranty. New homes should come with a written, long-term, insured warranty. A new home warranty protects you in the event a builder goes out of business or fails to honor a verbal promise.
• Cost vs. Design. Compare the design style and price point of each builder you are considering. Have a firm idea of the value in mind and be sure the builder is willing to help you understand their building method. Ask questions up front. Changes during construction happen, but knowing in advance how your builder will handle them will benefit your relationship later on.
Once you’ve done your homework, ask yourself, “Do I feel confident putting my money, time and future in the hands of this home builder?”