If you are planning to build a new home in Saskatoon, finding a home builder that you can trust is crucial. Someone who can navigate unexpected bumps and manage the behind the scenes the way you would want. You need to trust that your home builder is acting in your best interest.
When considering a builder, you want to know whether you and the home builder think similarly. Will they make similar decisions as you and will they be working to create the home you want?
So how do you get over that trust hump? How can you feel confident that your home builder is going to act in your best interest? These are hard questions to answer, but we have six recommendations that can help you decide if your builder is worth trusting.
One of the biggest things that will build trust, are walkthroughs. Consider walking through completed projects AND projects under construction, before you start working with them.
Walking through completed projects will give you an opportunity to see the finished quality for yourself. You will be able to determine if the home builder’s definition of quality meets your definition of quality. This gives perspective, and allows the builder to showcase some of the particulars they include that maybe others don’t.
A walkthrough of a custom home under construction, will give a different perspective and allow you to gain insight into some of the behind-the-scenes details.
- Is the site clean?
- What is the attitude of the contractors on site?
- Does it feel organized?
These are intangible things that add to your decision-making power. Additionally, doing a walk through during the construction phase, is an opportunity to ask specific questions like:
- What is their order of construction?
- What building materials do they use?
This is also an opportunity to see room dimensions and see styles you may be interested in. Either way, a walk throughs in both completed homes and projects under construction will help greatly to overcome any uncertainty.
The beauty of referrals is that you can ask questions to someone who has experience that a home builder likely won’t tell you and things that a walkthrough can’t show you. For example:
- What the experience was like
- How the builder handled bad news
- How the customer perceived the quality
- How they communicated
These are valuable insights when coming from someone who has first hand experience. That being said, referrals often give glowing reviews so I would go one step further and ask for these specific referrals
- Built a home 2+ years ago
- Took possession within the last 6 months
- Currently under construction.
By asking for referrals over a broader time frame you will get some differing information. Each client will have unique feedback, and you will get a sense of how things progressed!
Understanding the build process will give you some additional insight into whether you will be able to trust the builder. If the process is extremely hands on and that’s not something you want, it will add stress. However, if you aren’t part of the process and that’s something important to you, that can easily cause distrust.
From a trust standpoint, understanding the build process and knowing there is one helps bring peace of mind. In the case of a custom home, if the builder doesn’t have a process, there is an increased chance of:
- Unnecessary errors
- Increased costs
- Longer build time
A process (however that looks) simply reduces the chances for those types of mistakes. It can also ease your mind knowing you can trust things will be looked after.
Another option to gain trust is to request a third-party warranty report from the home builder. This tells you how many warranty claims have been filed on the builders’ homes (an indicator of quality).
Admittedly, a report with low or no claims, can be deceiving, because the builder can be taking care of deficiencies before they get claimed. If that is the case, this situation can also indicate the quality of service the builder provides after possession.
Insurance & WCB Certificates
Requesting a home builders’ insurance and worker’s compensation certificates is another way to make sure they are above board. Usually, people find out a builder is not insured until it is too late. Requesting certificates before you build, is an easy way to make sure they are operating professionally!
Ask the home builder for a professional home inspector to review the home prior to possession. This is simply to get one more set of eyes on the home before you move in. If the home builder refuses, I would consider that a red flag. A builder should stand behind their product. If there are any deficiencies that a home inspector finds, the builder should happily correct them before you move in!
Trust is such a critical piece to the custom home building puzzle. If you are trying to get over the trust hump, I hope these recommendations are helpful!
If you are interested in talking about building a new home in Saskatoon, we would love to chat!