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Meeting With Your Builder – What To Expect

Meeting With Your Builder – What  To Expect

The first meeting with your builder is the most important one of all. This meeting will give you the opportunity to see if your personalities match in a way that you can see yourself effectively working together to create your dream. It is an equally important opportunity for the builder to ensure that the job you are looking to have done, fits within the scope of the usual work, and that likewise you are comfortable with each other and have the ability to communicate well. So what should you expect in that first meeting with your builder?

Meeting With Your Builder For The First Time – What To Expect

Communication

There is no way I can stress highly enough how important the ability to communicate with your builder is. Your builder should demonstrate being able to listen, comprehend and then communicate with you in a way in which you are both able to understand. The first meeting should very much be about you the potential client, you can expect your builder to ask open ended questions to get you talking about your project. I strongly recommend that you prepare for the meeting by developing a list of questions you would like answered and throw in a few curly ones. A good builder will either be able to answer all your questions or get back to you with an answer, not bluff their way through. Communication break downs are the number one cause for complaints within the industry, it is both yours and the builders responsibility to ensure you can both communicate effectively.

Expect clear communication and to feel comfortable with your builder.

References

We’ve all read testimonials on websites, but how exactly can you be sure that they were not written by the builders Mother, or a friend? There is only one sure way to be sure that the references the builder is able to provide are the real deal, and that is by meeting with the past clients in person. In our business we offer our potential clients the opportunity to meet with several of our past clients to speak of their own experiences with our business, we also offer the chance to visit a current site. Visiting an ‘in progress’ site gives you the chance to see exactly what you can expect on your job site. You want it to be tidy, look for the safety aspects, watch to see all on site are respectful and getting along, this all gives you the firm indication that the team is well looked after and respectful of their employer, which will generally create a better level of finish.

Expect to be offered a chance to see past jobs.

Outline of the Process

At your first meeting you should expect the builder to outline their process to get you to your end goal. All builders will vary on this process, and you the client, need to be comfortable with how your chosen builder goes about what they do. This is another great area to ask lots of questions, remember that asking questions will give you the chance to ensure that your builder can both listen and communicate. The builder should be able to give you a firm outline of what to expect, but also provide you with anticipated timelines.

Expect to have a firm understanding of the process.

After your first meeting you should leave feeling comfortable and well respected, you should expect your builder to have a firm understanding of your project and for you to have a firm understanding of their processes. Don’t be afraid to ask lots of questions! You should want to leave the meeting knowing if this is the right builder for you.

Have you met with a builder recently? How did you find the experience?

Nicole xxx

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9 Comments

  1. What a good idea visiting an ‘in progress’ site is! Like you said references could be fudged and be from friends and relatives of the builder but an in progress site visit would provide so much useful honest information about how the builder operates.

    Ingrid
    http://www.fabulousandfunlife.blogspot.com.au

  2. This is great advice Nic. There is so much building going on in our area and I know there have been a few bad reports from buildres who seem to take on more work than they can do. So houses are left 3/4 done and take forever to be finished. #teamIBOT

  3. Excellent tips as usual Nicole! I’ve got a kitchen and two bathrooms that need to be made over soon (been saying this for ages) and your tips will be very helpful when it comes time to start the project!

  4. We met with a builder last year to do our bathroom reno and he was amazing, right from that first visit. Great communicator, very honest and did a great job project managing the whole thing. Some of his subbies weren’t great – and he admitted that upfront, which we respected. There is a massive shortage of trades up here so beggars can’t be choosers. LOL. Would work with him again in a heartbeat. The whole thing was organised perfectly.

  5. These are all really important points Nicole. We wanted to build prior to buying our current home but struggled with communication with the building firm we were interested in. They should be able to answer your questions with some degree of specifics, not come back each time with “that’d be expensive” but not add any estimated price. True story – it’s the reason we ended up selling our land and buying an established home!

  6. Some builders are great at communicating, and others you wonder how they even have a business. This is a great post for people who don’t know what to expect on that first meeting. Communication and being at ease is very important. I think one of the biggest concerns with house builders though is ensuring they will actually complete the job. That they won’t run out of money or halt work because of bad cash flow. So many people can be devastated by unfinished houses because the builder could talk the talk, but the business side of things was a shambles. Sometimes that first meeting can have a great vibe but also turn out horribly wrong later. Showing current projects and talking to past clients can ease that worry.

  7. Great advice!!! Communication is really key for me. I like to know where I stand, what’s happening when and why. I like to go on my gut a lot.

  8. We’re embarking on a new project and even though we know our builder quite well (old family friend), these tips are great and I’ll keep them in mind.

  9. Top tips as usual! I love the idea of meeting with past clients and seeing a work in progress – there’s nothing like a real life reference!

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