Which Builder is the Best?

When clients come to their agent for advice it's not uncommon for the client to ask the agent which builder is best or which builder builds the best homes and the like. Any agent who gives the name of a builder as the answer to this question is taking the easy way out to answering a difficult question. As for qualifying a builder to enter the running there are a number of items to address.


· Does the builder have reference clients? Ask for references from several clients who have built different sizes and types of homes with your prospective builder.   Don’t just contact recent clients, make sure to include past clients as well.

· Is the builder financially stable?

· What does the builder do in-house versus subcontracting? Who manages the home construction? Who does the actual work. You'll want to know how long the builder has been using the same subcontractors—if the builder has used the same mason on every project that indicates a level of confidence in the subcontractor’s quality and work.

· How does the builder ensure quality construction? What steps does the builder take to ensure the home meets the agreed upon specifications?

· How does the builder communicate with clients? What systems are in place for you to track the progress of your build?


Take detailed notes on the answers. Your level of comfort with the answers will go a long way in determining which builder will be the best fit for you.  So long as you get satisfactory answers to the questions above you can begin to focus on ensuring the builder you selected is building a safe and quality home for you and your family. Whom you choose to build your home is a very personal decision.  Many of the builders in Chapel Ridge can build you a high quality, beautiful custom home, but which builder do you want to work with for the next 8-12 months?  Choose a builder that you can envision working well with, one with whom you can easily resolve issues and conflicts should they arise.

You Are The Quality Control
As you may have already figured out there is no best builder. The process of taking a parcel of raw land and creating a family's home is long and can be complicated. As with all projects, communication is key. As new build clients you should feel comfortable contacting your builder representative and your on site Realtor as often as you like. The on-site agent and the builder both want you to have an enjoyable experience throughout the build process. Don't be afraid to engage them, they are there to help.


· Make sure you and your builder have agreed upon methods for contacting each other and receiving updates—communication is key.

· If timing is extremely important to you ask the builder to provide you with a detailed schedule for completion—this will allow you to follow the progress of your build

· Visit the site often and take photos. If you see anything that looks odd or is not what you expected take a photo, document the question in email, and contact the builder and your agent immediately. Waiting to see why the builder is clearing a section of the lot that you thought was going to be your treed hideaway may turn out poorly.  Conversely, if you are building in NC and living out-of-state, make sure the builder will provide you with photo updates so you are able to oversee the job remotely.

· Be detailed, but not unreasonable. If you notice something that is not quite right or that will cause you issues later, bring it up with the builder. You should feel comfortable raising any issue with your builder.  Remember, you are buying a new home, not a perfect home. No home is perfect, but a new home should be of high quality and to your specifications.


Be Diligent

As you've discovered, your involvement in the build process can make all the difference. Be as informed as possible.  Know your wants and needs for your home.  Be clear on your expectations of the builder so that the build process is enjoyable for all involved.  If you need assistance selecting a builder or narrowing down your criteria for your new home, please contact Yvonne Beal, NC Fine Living, 919-599-9500.  Whether you have questions, need floorplan ideas, want to set up some initial meetings with builders, or just want to discuss the community—we’re here to help.