Setting out to have your new home built from the ground up can be an exciting adventure, but it’s also a rather complicated process that can be quite confusing to those who aren’t employed within the building trades.
From council approval to hiring a contractor, you’ll face a series of issues that must be addressed in a timely, efficient manner if you want to keep the project moving along on schedule.
You’ll also need to learn how to read builder’s quotes, or at least make sense of them, if you plan to keep the building project on or under budget. Exceeding your means to build a home can be financially devastating, and may even leave the project largely unfinished if you’re truly under financial distress. This is why it’s so important to understand the builder’s quotes you obtain.
How to Understand Builder’s Quotes
The first step to properly reading builder’s quotes is to provide enough information for the builder to provide a reasonable estimate. Even the most competent builder will have trouble providing an accurate quote if they don’t have access to the information they need to do so. Without a builder’s plans and specifications, it will be almost impossible for a builder to give you much more than a general idea of potential costs.
Asking for itemised lists of expenses included in the quote, along with those which are not included, can help you to determine a more accurate estimate of building costs. This allows you to see which aspects of building are the most expensive, where the majority of your money will be spent, and areas where you could potentially save with a few adjustments. Even with an itemised list, however, a builder’s quote will still be a rough estimate of the total building cost.
Calling For Reinforcements
For many property owners who are embarking upon the adventure of new construction, the most reliable method of reading and fully understanding builder’s quotes is to call in a neutral third party with the requisite industry knowledge.
This is an area in which a building inspector can be of great assistance, and establishing a relationship with a building inspector early in the process can make it easier to manage new construction inspections as your new home is being built. Working closely with a building inspector allows you to obtain a thorough explanation of building costs and builder’s plans with no hidden agenda and no conflict of interest. Because a building inspector has no financial stake in the actual construction of your home, they have no motivation for being dishonest or misleading.
Before you accept builder’s quotes and hope for the best, consider the benefits of working with a professional building inspector to understand the intricacies of quoted estimates and the hidden costs of home construction. With the help of a skilled and impartial building inspector, you can learn to understand builder’s plans more easily to make informed decisions about the construction of your new home.
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