There are a few things to consider when first choosing your Builder for your dream home project. We have taken hard work out of this for you and listed the most important ones here :
1. Are they the right type of builder to suit your project?
The building industry has a wide range of different categories and most builders don’t cover them all. The most common are as follows:
Retail fit out
Most of the above also can be broken down further to subcategories.
Some Builders will advertise that they offer all of the above services. In most situations though you are better to choose a Builder who specialises in one area only as this ensures they are more likely to be an expert in what they do and all their focus is about delivering that one service to the highest standard. This is especially true when choosing a Builder to build a more complex Architecturally designed home, as this will mean they are able to more accurately price their work and have the capacity and experience to confidently handle any challenges that can arise with this type of build.
2. Recommendations and testimonials.
Talk to people who have built with the Builder before and their experience with that Builder. A Builder should be happy to connect you with previous clients (with client consent) as this proves that the Builder is happy for you to hear what they have to say.
If possible, talk to other people who work in the building industry who have regular contact with the Builder, for example Architects, Structural engineers, Building inspectors, Plumbers, Electricians, Painters etc. Your Builder should be happy for you to know who their subcontractors are, again this proves they are happy for you to hear what they have to say about their expertise and process.
Testimonials are a good way to checkout a Builder's reputation as firstly the Builder has had to perform for past clients and had a successful completion of the project for a happy client to write a testimonial.
The more testimonials there are the easier it is to see what their qualities are and how they deliver for their clients.
3. Associations and Licences
Under the current Building Regulations in New Zealand, all restricted building work has to be carried out by a Licensed Building Practitioner (LBP) on all residential building. The Licensed Building Practitioner Scheme was introduced in New Zealand in November 2007. The Scheme is there to encourage and ensure that competent Builders are building your dream home right the first time. The Scheme gives consumers access to the necessary information to make informed decisions about the competence of their Building Practitioner. LBP's are accountable to the Building Practitioner's Board. Registered LBP's can be found on a Public Register and are issued with a photo ID Licence Card which has to be annually renewed. You can ask your Builder if their Licence is current or whether they have had any complaints to the Board.
So if you are planning on building a new house or carrying out restricted work whilst renovating your existing house, your Builder will have to be an LBP.
Also, additionally, if they belong to an Association like the Registered Master Builders or Certified Builders then they have had to have proven they run a solvent company that has a high standard of craftsmanship and a history of satisfied clients by following each Association's approval process.
These are our 3 main critical factors when choosing your Builder. It will mean a little research for you and being willing to ask questions of others and your Builder. The end result will be worth it, however, if you can have peace of mind regarding not only their Craftmanship and reputation but that your project and your investment will be seen through to completion and you enjoy your beautiful new home for many years to come.
We have written a Guide for you detailing how you can avoid many of the pitfalls during the earliest part of the build process. You can access this here : Salter Builders Guide
Licensed Building Practitioner
Registered Master Builder
Phone : NZ (0064) 021 229 6222
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