I am a member of several Facebook groups for people building, designing or decorating their home, and recently followed a thread where a potential client was infuriated that the builder had asked one simple question. This person posed the question to the group, “Why does my builder want to know my budget”? The responses were varied and incredibly interesting. Perhaps it’s a question you have asked yourself, perhaps you’ve been asked, either way there are some significant benefits to sharing your budget with your builder.
Why Does My Builder Want To Know My Budget
Let’s confront the negative first, most builders do not charge for their quoting services, even though generating a quote can actually take in some cases a week or more of the builders time. To have this time wasted because the potential client wont give you an idea of their budget, will see quotes with little or no detail, or inaccurate quoting, as the builder would find it difficult to see the investment in the time spent on an accurate quote. This creates problems right from the beginning, and most professional builders will not even consider quoting if you are not prepared to give them an idea of where your budget sits. Professional builders will spend time ‘qualifying’ their clients before the first meeting, to be sure that the client is actually ready to build, and reasonable about budget.
Now that you understand the time a builder needs to invest in preparing a quote, you can understand that this would also be a wasted experience for potential clients who have unrealistic expectations surrounding the price. 99% of clients underestimate the costs involved in building and renovating, if that underestimate is significant, it is far more beneficial for client and builder alike not to go down the path of quoting.
Potential For Change
Having an understanding of the clients budget prior to expensive plans being drawn, allows the builder to contribute to the design process to find a way to achieve the desired result as close to the budget as possible. Time and time again we have clients who have spent many thousands of dollars on plans, that never get built, because their dreams outweighed the reality of their budget. Once you’ve drawn your dreams, it is nearly impossible to forget it, or let them go. Most clients at this point walk away from their project, but if you have a builder and architect or building designer that work collaboratively with your budget in mind, you are far more likely to create a plan for your home that works with your budget.
Achieving A Common Goal
At the end of the day, both builder and client want the house to be built or renovated, when the relationship is built on mutual trust and clear communication, you are far more likely to achieve this common goal. Giving your builder an accurate budget you are trying to build to, doesn’t mean that they are going to price things up to that price point. If you are concerned about sharing this number with your builder, perhaps that builder is not the right one for you?
As always we recommend that you take the time to research your builder before contacting them, use the initial contact as a screening point for yourselves, just as the builder will for you. Ensure you are comfortable before inviting them to quote for you, and then be prepared to be open and honest about your desires for the best outcome for you.
Would you be offended when asked your building budget? Why?