A friend of mine who was going to build a home in Sydney, Australia, quickly found the best home designs in Melbourne online, believe it or not. He said he was able to quickly view several plans and he decided on one he and his wife liked. They hired me to review the plans and I helped customize them to fit their needs. It is so important to have a full set of custom plans that meet your needs before even talking to any builders. A plan with a full set of documents puts the ball in your court, from bidding the project to building it. After the plans were complete, I told them that the easy part was done, but the reality is that home building or renovating a home can be an overwhelming experience to execute.

Between deciding on a budget, choosing what updates are most important and nailing the design, the home building part is the most stressful! Throw in a cowboy builder and this project could end up causing you a lot of emotional and financial heartache. If you’ve never renovated, built or dealt with a builder before, asking the tough questions could help you avoid hiring a dodgy contractor who will ruin your experience. Whether you’re building a new home, buying an apartment or purchasing a house and land package in Geelong, Melbourne, Sydney; doing your due diligence will help ensure you get the right team on the job from the get-go.

Top 3 Questions You Need To Ask A Potential Builder

Home Building Begins with a Plan

① Are you a licensed, registered builder?

A home is one of, if not, your biggest investment. So, why risk it by hiring someone unlicensed, even if it is in the hope of saving a few bucks? Working with an unlicensed builder can be disastrous. Protect your investment and double-check your builder’s licenses on a website.

② Do you have insurance?

You’ll want to know whether your builder has the appropriate insurance for home building and that their certificates are current before any work is carried out. Insurance can cover you for any damage or delays incurred. It also can protect you financially in the event your builder dies, disappears or becomes bankrupt. Without this insurance, you could be at risk of costly disputes and time delays, not to mention all the legal headaches.

③ Can you give me references of your home building projects?

Seeing the builder’s previous work and understanding the project details such as costs, time frame and scope will give you a good insight into the builder’s competence. You’ll be able to see the quality of craftsmanship and materials. It would also worthwhile to ask for the details of previous clients so you can get their feedback on the builder and the overall experience.

Don’t make the mistake of simply trusting that your friend’s friend is right for the job. Do your research checking your prospective builder’s credentials, craftsmanship, and references. Ensure they fully understand the scope of the job, your budget, and your time frame. You don’t want the headache of hiring a cowboy builder and ending up with a job that doesn’t last or that’s not up to standard.

Images Courtesy of Canva.

Other posts you might enjoy:

Window Types to Choose From When Building a Home

Building a New Home – How to Avoid the Pitfalls

Home Remodeling Survival Guide

Urban Living – How to Create Green Space in Your Urban Home

Share This Story, Choose Your Platform!

About the Author: Patricia Davis Brown

Patricia, like her blog, is not a one-dimensional designer, which is evident in her accolades of 17 national design awards. Over a 38-year career in the industry, she has carved a niche in several areas of design. Licensed in interior design and certified in kitchen and bath design, she offers a full menu of design services ranging from whole house interior design, kitchen and bath design, lighting design, full remodels, commercial design and universal (ADA) design. Patricia is a sought-after speaker in the industry and has been published in many publications as seen on her interior design firm’s website, https://www.patriciadavisbrowndesigns.com/. She writes for such publications as QuinStreetinc, Relaxed Remodeler, and eHow.com talent offering design tips.