You’ve finally decided to build that dream house and have invited us into your living room or have met us in our office. Now what?
As a professional homebuilder, we are prepared to answer any and all questions you have as you make a decision, arguably one of the most important financial choices in your life. We encourage and welcome this dialogue, but we find that homebuyers aren’t typically prepared for that opportunity. In many cases, the questions we get are limited to how much does a new house cost (or cost per square foot), what are the flooring and cabinet choices, and where dollars can be saved.
While those are valid questions, we think they only scratch the surface of what homebuyers need to know to help ensure a satisfying experience with Garner Homes or any professional builder.
So, here are the top five questions we think homebuyers should ask when they are on the cusp of building a new home with us:
1. Who will run the job?
In a custom home, there are thousands of details to manage. Supervision is critical.
At Garner Homes, you will have a team of qualified people that will supervise your project. Among them is a Construction Manager, a skilled and experienced professional who will guide you through groundbreaking through the final walk through. The other half of that management team is the Project Coordinator, who manages the administrative details of the project, leaving the field supervision solely for the Construction Manager.
It is important to know who will be in charge of your project, and how to contact him or her, to get the most accurate and up-to-date information and answer questions about your new house. We believe this gives you the best of both worlds; dedicated supervisors on site and in the office as your day-to-day go-to people along with availability from our entire staff in support of you and your new home.
2. Will workers be there all day, every day?
Understanding how we work and the pacing of a typical new home construction process is critical to having a positive experience. In fact, sometimes, there are very few people on the jobsite, but that doesn’t mean things aren’t progressing. There may be an inspection scheduled or a delivery on the way that will trigger crews and subcontractors to return and continue their work…perhaps even later that day, if not the next morning. We keep a tight schedule and our business depends on being efficient, but there are occasional lulls in the process that we’ll point out when we go over the building schedule with you. Garner Homes clients can follow their customized written schedule online using our Client Portal.
3. How do I understand what my costs will be?
Outside of supervision, understanding project costs is the most discussed and examined detail of the project. Make sure that you understand the proposal, the specifications, and the methodologies that the builder uses to build the house, manage the project, and execute the contract.
Often, construction specifications contain industry vernacular that may seem foreign to most people. Spend time doing your research on the products and methods that are contained in the project, and most importantly, make sure you verify that everything you included in your plans, and intend to be included in the contract, is written and detailed on the specifications.
4. Can you supply references?
We are happy to provide you with a list of people who have recently build homes with us, and we encourage you to call them and ask about their experience and level of satisfaction as you make your own purchasing decision. Any professional builder should have references at the ready, including financial partners, trade contractors, materials suppliers, and others we work with that can provide perspective on our professionalism and track record of performance.
5. How do you handle changes?
Most people don’t ask this question because they can’t envision making a change to a decision during construction, but it happens all the time. We work diligently with you to create a detailed list of specifications for your house before we break ground, but we also have change order policies and procedures in place—which we share with you up front and in the sales contract—to account for changes after building begins.
Armed with answers to this handful of questions, we think you’ll be more confident in your home-buying decisions, more likely to enjoy the building process and be satisfied with the end result.