The rising cost of real estate in Vancouver has led many home buyers to consider building a home. The benefits of a custom home build are many, but one of the most important things to do is find the right custom home builder.
In fact, when you tell friends and family you want to have a custom home built, the most common advice you will hear is this: hire a good contractor.
To guide you through the process of finding the right custom home builder, we’ve compiled a few preliminary questions you can ask a potential builder.
1: How long have you been a custom home builder?
Ask how long they have been building custom homes in Vancouver or around the Lower Mainland. Make sure they have been working locally. Ask for references, check their reviews and testimonials.
2: Are you insured and licensed?
This is important. They should have General Liability and Worker’s Compensation coverage. In 2016, new licensing requirements came into effect in British Columbia, so it’s critical that you check to see their licenses are up-to-date.
3: Do you have a portfolio of completed home builds?
Check their portfolio: does it match with your expectations? Keep in mind their portfolio is a good indication of the design and budget experience.
4: Do you hire contractors?
If your custom home builder has to hire contractors, they may not be able to guarantee the workmanship or reliability of the contractor. Ask if they use reputable and reliable contractors.
5: What happens if you don’t meet the terms and conditions of the warranty provider?
This relates to their insurance and in case problems occur with terms and conditions. You should also ensure your custom home builder has home warranty insurance.
6: How do you control costs?
Does your custom home builder work with trusted suppliers or tradespeople? Does he/she obtain multiple quotes? Do they offer any guarantee of a cap on rising costs or time to completion? Ask for a detailed written schedule as this will give you an indication of how they manage the process.
7: What exactly is included in the cost?
There are always unexpected costs but a professional and experienced custom home builder will try to give you a detailed cost report that takes into account most costs such as permit fees, surveying, construction plans, insurance and landscaping.
8: Do you offer a warranty period?
After you move in, do they offer a warranty on leaking faucets, roof tiles, faulty light switches etc. This will give you an idea of their standard of quality work and level of responsibility in terms of repairs.
9: What about quality assurance inspections throughout the build process?
Again, this is vitally important if they hire outside contractors on an ongoing basis. A professional custom home builder will add these inspections to the schedule and it’s always a good idea to ask for the reports.
10: When will I know the total cost of the custom home build?
There will always be additional, unexpected costs however they should keep you informed of potential cost changes and be able to give you an accurate estimate.
For more information on custom home builds, contact us. We’d be happy to help answer any questions you may have about building a new custom home.