Questions to Ask Your Custom Home Builder

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Surprisingly enough, the most challenging part about building a custom home in Toronto is not the building itself. Many people report that the hardest part for them as future homeowners is deciding on the right contractor.

Between the horror stories and the online reviews, it can be daunting to sign a contract with a custom home builder, especially when there’s so much at stake: time, effort, and lots of money.

For this reason, we’ve taken it upon ourselves to make choosing a custom home builder easier for you by compiling a list of the most important questions to ask beforehand.

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1. “How Long Will It Take to Finish My Custom Home?”

Most people looking to build their custom home are tied to a timeframe in which the house has to be completed. So if you have a deadline for your custom home, make sure you discuss that with the prospect builders you’re in talks with.

You should also ask this question in the early steps of planning your project, preferably when acquiring quotes from various builders in your area. Be sure to know all the specifications and requirements about your home and relay them clearly to your builder. Giving the builder the right details will help them determine the scope of work and understand how much time they need to complete the project.

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2. “How Will You Ensure You Stay on Budget?”

A common concern for homeowners, whether they’re taking on a renovation, remodelling or addition project, is the possibility of added expenses. If you have a clear budget that you don’t wish to exceed, it’s fair to ask your custom home builder about their process to stay within that budget.

A relevant point to ask about here is whether the contract includes a cost escalation clause, which allows for the escalation of price for labour and materials used in a construction project.

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3. “What Warranties Are Provided with The House?”

As a homeowner, you know that part of the custom home fees includes a warranty on the project. So make sure you get your money’s worth by asking your home builder about their warranty policy before you hire them.

Moreover, having a warranty for an investment as big as a custom home can also be a safety blanket for homeowners. Knowing that the builder you’ve chosen to hire has your back even after the project is completed can add a great deal of value to your custom home investment.

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4. “Are You Allowed to Purchase Your Own Appliances or Materials?”

While some homeowners entrust the materials with their custom home builder, many others choose to purchase materials from specific suppliers, likely ones they’ve already worked with.

It’s good to ask builders about the materials they have access to just to get an idea about their quality and durability. That way, you have the option to go with the supply the builder has, or go with your own. So make sure you touch on this when you’re choosing a builder to work on your custom home.

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5. “Is the Landscaping Included?”

Although they seem like they come hand in hand, landscaping is considered a completely different territory than the construction of the house itself.

If you’re considering a custom home, make sure to ask builders about whether the house’s landscaping is included in their work. It might be for some builders but not for all. In the latter case, you can request the builder to connect you with a landscaping contractor that they recommend, or you can reach out to landscapers yourself.

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6. “Are There Any Financial Incentives for Using the Builder’s Preferred Lender?”

If you need budgeting for your custom home project, you might resort to taking out a construction loan from a financial institution. It’s a great idea to ask your builder whether they collaborate with a certain bank or lender that can help you with the budgeting process. You might actually end up with a homeowner loan with a competitive interest rate that suits the budget you have in mind.

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Now that you have all the important questions to ask your custom home builder, your mission to find the right one should be much simpler. Contact us directly to learn more about the custom home building process, what goes into it, and how you can get started on the right foot with your next project.