Selecting a Custom Builder

Four Tips for Selecting a Custom Builder

So you’ve decided to do it – You’re going to build your dream home, the one you’ve always talked about, the one you have Pinterest boards dedicated to, your family’s FOREVER home. Well, congratulations on the decision, that is a big step. Now…How will you choose the right builder for one, if not the most important project you’ll take on?

Since we know a thing or two about building dream homes, we thought we would share the top four things we would look for in a builder if we were walking in your shoes. 

Custom Home by Tom Waller
Custom Home by Tom Waller Signature Homes

Understand what you’re looking to build

The first recommendation is on you, the homebuilder. While you don’t have to have every detail defined, it’s important to understand what style of home you hope to build, the location (assuming a lot hasn’t been purchased), and most importantly, an estimated budget. These elements will help you determine potential partners without wasting time meeting with builders who are not a match.

Don’t be shy…Come with questions…a LOT of questions! 

Ask questions, and when you think you’ve asked too many questions…ask some more. We are used to being asked a lot of questions, and what you’ll find is that we will be full of questions for you as well. We want to get to know you and build a working relationship out of the gates. You will be spending a lot of time with your builder and being comfortable asking questions is really important to the success of the project. So fire away, and to get you started, we’ve included a few must-ask questions below. 

Kitchen – Tom Waller Signature Homes
  • Is the contractor licensed and insured? 
  • Is the contractor a registered builder? 
  • Does the contractor have the capacity to take on a new client? 
  • How does the contractor plan to communicate with you? 
  • Do we (the owners) need to be on the job site every day? 
  • What happens if we (the owners) need to change something mid-project? 
  • How does the contractor work up an estimate and how should we, as owners, expect to be invoiced? 

Take time to evaluate past work (ahem…talk to past clients) 

We are fortunate to have built up quite a resume over the last 19 years in business, but we are also a firm believer in evaluating the quality of work over the number of homes built each year. We encourage you to do your due diligence. Read reviews, ask to speak with past clients so you can get a feel for what it’s like to work with a particular company, if possible, ask to talk with a client who is in the middle of building a home. Remember, this is a big decision, and what may feel like overkill will ultimately help you make the best decision for your family. 

How will a builder manage your project to stay on time and within budget

Last but certainly not least, ask how a builder will manage your project to stay on time and within budget. Ask how you, as the client, will remain in lockstep with the team to make sure decisions are made promptly, or any concerns are addressed quickly to keep things on track. 

We look forward to answering all of your questions because we know establishing a good relationship upfront, makes for a really fun ending when we hand you the keys to your dream home.