What To Look For When Choosing Building Contractors

Building Contractors

Choosing a building contractor, such as Cougar Homes Queensland, will have a huge impact on the quality and cost of your building work. Make the wrong decision, and you could be left with incompleted work and a lot of legal headaches. The right contractor, however, can leave you with a finished product that will last the test of time without breaking the bank. Here is a simple guide and some top tips that should help you to identify the right building contractor for the job. Avoid spending too much and getting too little by following these simple but useful tips.

Location, Location, Location

No matter what type of building work you have planned, you want to use a contractor that is local to you. There are many firms out there that will be happy to take on your work but a based many, many miles away. They will insist it will not be an issue, but their tune will change when work begins. The workforce will be late to arrive, and early to leave which will cost you time and time is money.

Always concentrate your search on local builders. You can find builders near you at MyBuilder, and read reviews from people just like you who have used their services. This can be a great way to create a shortlist of options to start getting quotes from. At MyBuilder you can also find photographs of completed jobs alongside the reviews so you can be confident in the quality of the finished product.

Work With Your Local Authority

If you are planning on getting a lot of work done, you may need planning permission. You should always try to work with your local authority rather than see them as adversaries in the process. They have a lot of knowledge and experience in building and renovations and can give you advice and help that can save you money and headaches. They will know local builders too and have a good idea of what a sensible quote should look like.

When you begin the planning stage of your build, ask your local authority for any advice or recommendations, and keep them in mind. Any builders, like a reputable Townsville building company, they recommend should make your shortlist.

Google Your Builders

When you are putting together a shortlist of contactor candidates, do some web searching. Even a small local builder will have some small presence on the internet that should give you a better idea of their abilities and the type of work they have done previously. You may also find some reviews and comments that may be positive or negative. It is important to read these carefully and with a critical eye.

Read the details of any customer comments or reviews. When you are reading a positive comment, keep an eye out for details on the scale of the job completed and how accurate the timeframe and pricing quotes were. Negative reviews can often go a little overboard, people tend to go a bit far with their comments when they are angry or feel let down. Make sure you take a balanced look at negative reviews or Facebook comments, as the customer may have been the problem and not the builder.

Contracts And Guarantees

The paperwork is important. Never engage in work with a builder without a contract that includes both the price and the timeframe. When you are discussing quotes, you should discuss the terms of the contract too and what kind of guarantees come with the work. A qualified, experienced, and reputable building contractor should have no problem discussing this with you and giving you an idea of what is included in their typical contracts.

If a builder is part of a trade association, such as the Federation of Master Builders (FMB), they will be able to offer guarantees or warranties on the completed work. The FMB will also help enforce them should something go wrong and your builder fails to honour their commitment to fixing the work. This can give you added peace of mind during and after the building process, so membership with a trade association is worth looking for when choosing your contractor.

High And Low Quotes

When it comes to cost, you need to think long and hard about the quotes you are given. A high price does not necessarily mean high quality. Likewise, a low price does not mean the quality of the finished work will be poor. One of the biggest factors affecting a quote is the amount of time a builder has. If they do not have a lot of space in their diary they may put the price up to make it worth the stress of squeezing you into their schedule.

Getting a range of quotes, and advice from your local authority or an architect should give you a good idea of a sensible price for the cost. You should get at least three quotes, but the more the merrier. Remember to get a timescale as well as a price. If you can afford the time, a job that is cheaper but takes longer may save you some money. If you need a job done quickly, you will have to pay more for the work. For building work to be completed quickly you will be spending more on labour, which is always the largest individual cost in any build.

Contractors Who Can Project Manage

If you have a bigger building project planned, such as a property extension, then you will benefit from having a project manager that can handle the work for you. This level of building work is complex and will require a lot of scheduling and arranging to make sure materials arrive at the right time and in the right order. You may also need to use multiple contractors to get the different elements of the work completed.

Using your primary contractor as your project manager may put the price of their work up a bit, but if they are a competent and experienced builder it will save you stress in the long run. Without a project manager on the job, the responsibility falls on you. Not only will relying on their expertise save you stress, but it could also save you money too. Making mistakes will push the cost of the job up, especially if those mistakes cause delays. Time is money and in construction work, lost time can be very expensive. When you are searching for a contractor for a big job like an extension, look for one with proven project managing experience that is willing to take on the responsibility.

The best way to add value to a property is with building work that adds space and makes it look more desirable. This can have a massive positive impact on your property price if it is done well. You only get to choose your building contractor once, and the effect the work will have on your house value means that you have to choose wisely.

Follow the tips in this guide to find a contractor with the experience and competence to complete the work to a high standard in a reasonable amount of time at an affordable price. With some time, patience, and investment, you should have a finished result that you can be proud of and that will add a lot of value to your home.

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