Choosing a builder can be difficult.
They could have all the five star reviews on Google in the world, but does that tell the full story? If you don't already personally know a builder, then you are going to need to shop around. Here are our top five tips for choosing a builder.
1. Choosing a builder you trust
You wouldn't invite someone you do not trust in to your home, so why should it be any different if they are working there? Make sure you choose a builder you feel comfortable with. Ask for references and check them out online. If it all stacks up but you still feel uncomfortable with them, keep looking until you find someone you do trust.
We all want to get a bargain when we're shopping for something and when choosing a builder it is no different. But consider this. You get three similarly priced quotes from certified builders and then you get one more at half the price. This person has no ties to a trade organisation. But. He's cheaper. Don't be too quick to say yee-haw because it's highly likely that you have found yourself a cowboy.
The term 'you get what you pay for' is accurate in our industry 99% of the time. I'm sure if you ask around, it will not take you long to hear of the horror stories about builders who are not competent to complete the job to the expected standard.
So when thinking about the price, don't only think about if it's too expensive. Make sure it doesn't feel too cheap either.
3. Check out their work
We mentioned earlier that you should ask for references. But why not take it a step further and ask to have a chat with the client at the property your potential builder worked at. This way you can get a look at their workmanship. Also you can get a better idea of how that client feels about the builder than if you were to just make a phone call or send an email.
4. Choosing a builder who shows courtesy
How do they treat your home when they come to make the initial quote? Do they take their boots off at the door? Or do they trample mud from their last job through your house? Looking for the little things like this can make the difference.
If they don't treat your home with respect when they are writing a quote, would you feel comfortable leaving them alone all day while you are at work?
If there is something you don't 100% understand, ask. If you don't understand the answer, ask again. There is nothing more unsettling than going into a situation like a building project being unsure or having doubts.
On the other hand, expect your potential builder to be asking questions too. You want to be sure that they fully understand your needs in regards to the project.
So when you're looking to choose a builder, or any tradesman for that matter, think about our guide and make sure they tick all the boxes.