Choosing a builder for your home.
A homeowner will spend a year or more and a significant amount of money with the builder they choose for their home. To help create definition between ourselves and other builders you may interview, please consider the following questions as a guide to help you understand the service you will receive.
Companies, like individuals usually refer you to people and projects they had good experiences with. It is important for you to know about all of their experiences. We suggest asking for the last 5 clients the contractor worked with.
Questions for Referral Calls:
How did the contractor handle deficiencies and repairs? Everybody is human and mistakes do happen, the homeowner should never pay to repair work that the builder has been paid to do before.
- Budget – Reporting vs. Managing
A budget should be built from several versions, starting with broad assumptions and completing with an accurate document supported by real design decisions and as many fixed costs as possible. Dakota Ridge Builders will deliver a working budget to govern the cost of the project with a 5% contingency for unknown costs. With accurate plans a high degree of accuracy can be achieved in budgeting.
- Site Conditions
Your project site should be presentable and cleaned daily, this creates a safe working environment and encourages an efficient job site. We recommend unscheduled job site inspections as a great tool to gauge the professionalism of any crew. A quick call to the supervisor just prior to arriving will ensure safety measured are taken and you can see the site in operation.
Costs, Rates, & Fees
- What are the hourly rates per employee?
- What management fees will be applied to costs?
- What are considered costs to the project and what are considered non-billable overhead costs of the builder?
- Is it possible to fix the fee at a flat rate?
Time and Material Tracking
- How are employee hours tracked and audited?
- How are invoices assigned to the project?
- How is the project budget updated?
- Request letters of clearance from Worksafe BC (WCB), ensure all liabilities have been paid.
- Request a letter of reference from the contractors bank, ensure payable’s are paid promptly.
- Have the sub-trades been paid promptly, are there any outstanding liens on projects?
- How many sub-trades are regularly engaged with the builder and for how long?
- How many full-time employees does the builder have and how long have they worked for the company?
Tools & Equipment
- Does the contractor own all of the required tools and equipment to perform the tasks of your project?
- If rental equipment is required, why and at what expense?
- What is the capacity of the builder to assign the required team to focus on your project continuously?
- How many personnel are certified trades people?