Choosing the Right Builder for Your First Home

By First Home Australia In News No comments

There are things to consider when looking at builder and what they offer.

Let’s take a look:

  • What is actually included and what isn’t? If you have looked at a display home, try to remember that these use the best quality fittings and finishes which would not be standard in your home design.
  • Many buyers wish to make changes during construction, on occasions, this can cause problems for the builder.
  • When will construction commence and when will it be completed? You need to know for sure.
  • Are there any sustainability features incorporated into the initial designs?

Before committing to any builder, it is advisable to see as many examples of what they have completed in the last couple of years. If possible you should also try and speak to the owners and then you can get a good insight of how good your builder is likely to be. They should always be accredited.

What is the process when building a house?

No matter how large or small your home, the basic steps during construction are generally the same, it is just the complexity which varies. You may ask yourself, what is the difference when building a house with the expert builder than to a normal builder? The only real difference in the way it changes is when you are buying “off the plan.” Usually, the expert builder has many things under their control, although many of the steps require the same commitments.

Site Preparation

Usually, the lot being will have been cleared and tested for suitability, soil tests, feature surveys, service connection points and any features which are existing, all of which would be done by a builder if you were purchasing “off the plan” or a “house and land package.”
Site work would also be carried out to ensure the lot is ready for the foundations to be poured and the paperwork should be available for all of the above items before construction can move to the next stage.

Foundations

Here the slab would be poured and all the underground power and plumbing a would be incorporated into this stage. Other building inspections which are carried out would be floor level for signs of termites (as an example). Once the slab is poured, there is a curing time until it is solid enough for further construction, and the first progress payment would usually be due.

Frame Stage

Here the house would actually start to take shape and look something like a house, where all the walls and roof trusses would be installed.
This would require building inspection number three, and all dimensions, positioning of the doors and windows would all need to conform to the approved set of plans. A second progress payment would also be due at this stage.

Lock-Up Stage

This stage is where the house can actually be made secure. Here a roof will have been completed and all fascias, guttering, external doors, and windows will have been fitted. At this stage plumbers and electricians can start their first stages of internal installation after the cladding has been installed, or has already been installed.
Building inspection number 4 would check for the property being water tight, and as with the other stages, the third progress payment would be due to the builder.

Fixing Stage

The majority of the work in this stage will be on the interior and all features will be fitted and the internal wall construction would commence along with the ceilings and internal doors. It also includes the fitting of baths, showers, sink units and stairs if it is a double story property. The fourth progress payment would be due to the builder.

Completion Stage

This is where all the final details will be completed and it should not be long before you have the opportunity to move in. All painting, tiling and any exterior rendering are completed. Work surfaces and shower screens are also installed before you can have a walk around with the builder to give yourself a final check and confirm a handover date.
The final inspection check that will ensure that everything has been completed to building codes and if all is well the building surveyor will issue a certificate of occupancy.
Once this certificate has been received, the final progress payment would be due and your lender will probably send their own valuer to check the property before releasing the final funds as well.

Settlement

Once all the payments have been completed, the keys would be handed over and the house (and mortgage) would finally be yours.