5 Tips for Hiring the Right Custom Home Builder in Boulder, Colorado Springs or Denver
1. Make sure your custom builder is licensed and insured. If you’re working with a traditional new home builder, he/she should be able to readily share license and insurance information. If you’re acting as your own general contractor in the Denver area or anywhere for that matter, make sure you know the local zoning laws and your liability risks. Your HomeWrights Custom Home project managers can give you guidance on this.
2. References. Check your chosen contractor’s past work. Take a look at some of the custom home builder’s work. Talk to a few of the builder’s customers. Ask them about the finished product as well as the process.
How was the contractor to work with? What happened when there was a problem or a change (because that always happens). What happens six months later when a construction defect rears its ugly head? Did the builder take care of it?
3. Personality. Seems kind of silly that personality issues are a consideration when you’re spending hundreds of thousands of dollars, doesn’t it? But the reality is, you’re going to be intimately involved with this person/company for the next six to 18 months! Make sure and meet the person you will be working with most.
Denver general contractors are easy to find. But don’t take the first one you find in your search results. Look around, ask around, and make sure you connect with someone you respect, trust, and enjoy.
4. Understand the Paperwork. Looking over new home construction contracts can be intimidating but most residential home builders are more than happy to answer any questions on their agreements. The last thing anyone wants is a surprise later. Ask for warranty details, insurance considerations, timeframes, etc. Know what the rules of the game are for change orders and upgrades before you sign.
There are NO DUMB QUESTIONS. If your prospective new home builder hesitates to answer questions clearly, find another home builder.
5. Ask for Ways to Save. Like any business, a quality home builder has to cover labor costs and add a markup on materials to make the job profitable. What those numbers are varies from builder to builder. A good residential home builder deserves to make a profit and you should see the value in paying him to do so.
But it’s perfectly fine to discuss creative ways that you can maintain your budget. For example. You might ask to purchase your own appliances and fixtures at sales prices you find on your own. You could ask to manage certain parts of the construction project yourself – such as flooring. In that case you might work directly with the flooring company to save a nice percentage on a large expense. Not all builders will do this but it’s worth asking.
Some Denver area contractors only provide round-number estimates and that can be unnerving. When your new home builder says, “Your appliance budget is $____ get what you want,” keep in mind he will keep money left over when you are under budget and charge you extra when you go over that budget. At HomeWrights Custom Homes, our Owner-Builder clients avoid the mark up of typical builders because they are the builder.
You always know EXACTLY what you are spending. Alternatively, if you choose the HomeWrights Turnkey Program, you’ll see that our transparent bookkeeping allows you to see what things cost and what you are being charged for. No surprises.
Ready to be your own general contractor? Ask about our Owner-Builder Program. Rather have us build it for you? Sounds like we need to talk. Call and discuss the best options for your custom home construction project! There is no cost to explore your custom home building ideas!