Choose a builder you can work with
Selecting a builder can managed by an architect.
When the plans are completed to your approval they can put them out for tender.
Or select a builder and negotiate a price based on an estimated cost provided by a quantity surveyor, using their knowledge of local builders to make sure that you get the right sort of builder for the job.
If you are managing the process yourself then you should recognise that there are basically three types of builder that you could be dealing with.
There are what might be called volume residential builders.
These are the big firms who will do anything from seriously large construction jobs right down to the smallest renovation.
They will have building gangs, painting crews, plasterers, joiners, the works. Basically anything you want to do, they can do. Because of their size they tend to be quick and efficient.
Custom builders are those that specialise in producing a menu of buildings. They will have a range of standard plans which, within certain limits, you can customise to your taste. They tend to be larger and certainly, with their set plans, they can be a very economical choice.
And then there is the individual builder.
They can range from the proverbial one-man band, to a builder who may employ a number of men or gangs and may have a number of projects on the go at once.
They usually have contact with architects and/or a draughtsman as well as structural engineers.
Selecting a builder is, in theory, a simple rational business decision.
They can do the job or they can’t. Their price is right or it isn’t. But there is more to it than that.
You are going to have to work with these people.
How do you think you’re going to get on with them? Do you trust them? You may find that you are willing to sacrifice the best price if you believe you’re getting a better builder.
And remember that the lowest price is not always the best price.
In our experience underpricing has been the principal reason for builders’ insolvency and inability to complete building projects for many years.
You should expect to pay a fair price for the job, remember the saying you usually get what you pay for.
for references of jobs the builder has done before.
Telephone the owners and ask them to be frank and open about their experience and the quality of the work. If the owners agree, view the jobs.
A question to ask, and something to consider, is whether or not your builder is registered.
A Registered Master Builder is able to offer you an independently backed guarantee. Conditions Apply. This is a comfort factor, which is important.
And one last thing, when you are getting quotes tell the builders that you’re getting other quotes.