Working with your builder

Building a new home is a big decision. Here are our top tips for Working with your Builder.

  • Visit display villages for designs you like and to get a feel for the quality of a builder’s work. Be aware that the price of the display home as viewed, may be very different to the standard version of the home design. Read the specification (what is included for the price) carefully and compare to the home you have viewed.
  • Choose a well-established builder and ask how many homes they complete each year. An established builder has extensive buying power and the industry knowledge to save you money.
  • Try and stick with the design as offered by the builder. Making changes to basic plans will make your home a little bit different but is a very easy way to add thousands to the cost of your home build. If you want stone bench tops, choose a design that offers them as standard, rather than individually upgrading another design.
  • Similarly stick to your choices of interior features, such as floors, tiles, kitchen surfaces, once you have made them. Changes or upgrades after you have signed your contract can quickly see costs blow out.
  • Ask your builder about any restrictions or covenants affecting your lot. Are there restrictions on where you can build a garage or pool? Are their guidelines for the style and colours of houses allowed? Can you build a two storey home on the block? These guidelines ensure an attractive neighbourhood once homes are built, and a good land Sales Professional will explain them at the time of purchase.
  • Check what is included in your building contract. Painting, floor coverings, electrical items and paving or driveways are rarely included as standard. Compare inclusions from different builders and see exactly what you are paying for. Ask about ‘turnkey’ prices which mean you home is ready to move into, including all of the above.
  • Your builder will assign a supervisor to your new home. The supervisor will give instructions to all the tradespeople, oversee schedules and answer your queries during the build. While you may have many questions when your visit your home during construction, to save time, duplication and confusion it is best to discuss these with the supervisor only.
  • Be organised. Keep a file of all your correspondence, contract and choices to quickly refer to during the build. Try to put all your queries to the builder in writing and ask for all responses by email, so you have a copy for your records.