You have decided to build a home. So where do you start? The Home Builders Association of Miami County recommends that you take the following steps before hiring a builder.
- Contact the Home Builders Association to see if the builder is a member. While membership in the HBA is voluntary, participation in a professional trade organization is a good indication of a company’s commitment to the industry. Members of the HBA adhere to a strong code of ethics and strive to provide quality workmanship in a professional manner.
- See if the company has any unresolved consumer complaints registered with the Better Business Bureau. You can contact the local BBB at (937) 222-5825
- Ask the builder to provide the names of customers they have built for previously. Call at least three of the customers and ask them what they thought of the work performed. Request and verify other references such as subcontractors and suppliers.
- Try and tour a number of other homes currently being built by each builder under consideration. Try to visit homes under various stages of construction if possible.
An important criterion for selection a builder is the warranty provided on the home. Most builders offer some form of written warranty. Many builders back their own warranties on workmanship and materials, typically for one year. Ask about the builder’s warranty. Do not wait until after you move in and a problem arises.
Lastly, find out from each builder what kind of service you can expect after the sale. Typically, a builder makes two service calls during the first year to repair non-emergency problems covered by your warranty. The first call is usually 30 to 120 days after move-in and the second is around the eleventh month – right before any one year warranties on workmanship and materials would expire.
When choosing a builder, be thorough and ask a lot of questions. Get as many specifics as possible. If you receive the answers verbally rather than in writing, take notes. Never hesitate to ask a question. Make sure your are comfortable with your builder’s personality as well as their qualifications.
Buying a new home is one of the biggest and most important purchases you will make in your lifetime. By doing your homework, you will be able to select a builder with a sense of confidence and knowledge that will help you make the right decision.