Many contractors have display homes which you can visit. The contractor offers to build the same house wherever you want it at an advertised price. Many contractors also offer standard home designs which you can select and have them build at their advertised price. While others offer a kit home, which you can purchase and erect on your property. This all sounds like a great idea, you know what you are getting and the price! But is that the case?
What's included in the price of your new home?
As with any contractor it’s important to understand the contractor’s reputation and their reliability. In many cases owners fall in love with a particular home design which is within their budget. Sometimes it's not even the overall layout that they like but specific features of the house. It seems an easy process then to sign a contract and get your new home construction underway. Little thought has been given as to who the contractor is, and whether you’ll be getting the advertised product, at the price you envisaged and within the time-frame required. It’s important to choose your contractor wisely (see my article later on selecting the contractor and questions to ask your contractor) and not become solely focused on a particular product.
When selecting a display home or standard plan you must consider the following:
Of course selecting a house from a standard plan does have it's advantages. It can save design fees. In some cases the plans are already approved for that area so it could speed up approvals - meaning construction can start sooner. Often builders have optimised the house designs so they are cheaper to build than other designs.
But it's always important to understand what you are getting and that there aren't hidden costs and unpleasant surprises. Importantly, always ensure that you are employing a reputable contractor and that the home design is really what you want.
I'll discuss many of these points in more detail in later articles. But of course they are all in in my new book 'An Introduction to Building and Renovating Houses: Volume 1 Hiring Contractors, Managing Construction and Finishing Your Home' which also contains lots of valuable information to save you money and ensure that your home build or renovation project is a success. Click on the image to read a preview on Amazon. The book is available in paper or ebook form from Amazon and other online stores, or ask your local bookstore to order a copy for you.
Thinking of buying a property and building a house? Does your house need an upgrade?
An Introduction to Building and Renovating Houses Volume 2 is packed with advice and tips for a successful project.
Building or renovating a house should be exciting, it will be challenging, but it will end successfully if planned correctly. Building a home is going to be one of the largest investments you make – both emotionally and financially, so it’s important to get it right.
The process of building or renovating a house starts at the beginning where you decide what you want, where you want it, when you need it, how much you can afford and how you’re going to manage and construct the work. This practical book takes you through the what, when and where process. Learn what to look for when choosing your ideal property, know what you should consider when renovating an existing house, understand important design considerations for your dream home, and view simple suggestions that could transform an existing home at a modest cost.
Valuable advice to ensure that you purchase the right property.
Don't buy land that you will later regret. Don't believe your real estate agent. Learn what to look for and the questions you should ask.
Home Design Essentials
Understand design concepts. Learn what questions to ask your architect. Don't accept a house design which you regret later. A design which missed critical essential items. A design which should have been better.
Home Renovation Basics
Don't embark on a costly home renovation project which might not yield the desired results. Don't find that costs on your renovation or remodelling project have skyrocketed. Know what questions you should be asking before starting your renovation project. Learn how to avoid unpleasant surprises and mistakes.
The wrong contractor could turn your home building project into a nightmare
You're ready to start building or renovating your house and you decide to get a building contractor to construct all of the work or parts of the project. Getting the wrong contractor could be disastrous, but equally, not providing the contractor all the information could mean that you receive variation claims during construction for the extras the contractor wasn't aware of, which will make your home build or renovation project more expensive and possibly result in lengthy legal disputes.
But also when you receive prices from building contractors you need to carefully check them (a process which we will look at in more detail in a future article) because not all prices are what they seem.
The steps to finding and appointing a building contractor.
An Introduction to Building and Renovating Houses - Volume 1
Do you want to renovate your existing home or build a new house but don’t know where to start? This book has valuable tips and advice to help you. Learn what to check when employing contractors to ensure your builder delivers your new home on time, with minimal fuss and without hidden extra costs that blow your budget. Know what to look for to avoid shoddy work. Understand your rights and obligations. Ensure your building and renovation project is a success.
Building or renovating a house should be exciting. You can make it a success, whether you do everything yourself, outsource some of the work to experts, or leave everything to the experts. But even experts need to be managed – and of course, make sure that they really are experts! How much you do and how much work you leave to experts will depend on your expertise, confidence, means and time.
In this practical book filled with invaluable information learn who the various parties are in a home building project, discover different ways you could manage your building project, appreciate what to consider when renovating your house, understand common construction practices, know what to look for when selecting your contractor, learn how to manage your contractor and complete your building project successfully. Know your rights and obligations, avoid common construction problems, learn about construction contractual and financial issues, and understand the traps and pitfalls you should avoid.
Armed with this knowledge your home construction project will be a success. Good luck.
This book replaces the author’s book ‘Build and Renovating Your Home With Your Eyes Wide Open’
I’m a construction professional, author of several successful construction management books, and a home owner. I’ve made mistakes in construction management, I’ve seen others make mistakes, but importantly I’ve had multiple successful construction projects and I’ve learned from the mistakes. I want to share these lessons and my knowledge with you.
Also available from:
and 'An Introduction to Building Houses - Volume 2 Finding Your Ideal Property and Designing Your Dream Home'
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