How to compare Building Quotes for Home Renovation and Home Extension projects
There are many reasons why one Builder may be more expensive, and there are many reasons why another may appear much cheaper than the other! Selecting a Builder based on price alone is fraught with pitfalls. For example, a cheaper price can end up costing you dearly in the long term if your Builder is not using quality materials, experienced trades, or has hidden costs.
A cheap quote may seem better at the start, but may cost you more in the long run if the quality is compromised, or the hidden costs add up as your project progresses. So, how do you know what to look for when comparing Quotes? What should you ask each Builder?
How to Compare Building Quotes, and make an informed decision when selecting your Builder
– Provide all Builders with the same starting point.
Start by providing all Builders with the same brief and the same drawings. To ensure that you can fairly compare quotes from multiple Builders, make sure you provide each with the same brief, the same plans and specifications. This will even the playing field and make it easier for you to compare.
Are you comparing Apples with apples, or apples and oranges? That is, do the Quotes that you are comparing include the same items? Is it clear what is included and what is excluded? If a Quote is much lower than the others, chances are there are significant items not included. Be careful and ask questions.
– Check that Quality Materials have been specified
Building prices can vary due to the different types and grades of materials specified. If a Builder is very cheap, and their Quote seems significantly low, you will need to ask more questions about the materials supplied. You want your home renovation to be in high in quality so that it stands the test of time.
– Is the Quote lacking in detail?
Is there not much detail in the Quote? If a Quote is lacking in detail, or doesn’t list everything you have requested then proceed very carefully. If an item is not listed then chances are it has not been costed into the Quote. This potentially means a nasty surprise lurks further down the track.
– Home Warranty Insurance is mandatory on all Perth Home Renovation and Building projects!
WA has mandatory Home Warranty Insurance for works over $20,000. This should be listed as an item in your formal Quote. If a Builder does not specify this, be alarmed!
– Contacting your Builder during construction should be EASY!
Ask about the accessibility of the Builder and/or Site Supervisor during construction. Does your written quote indicate who will be in charge of your project? If a problem arises, can you contact the Builder directly? Is your Supervisor authorised to make decisions or does this have to go thru a lengthy administrative process back at the office?
– Check that your Builder has a track record of delivering on time
Does the Builder have a track record of delivering on time? Ask whether the Builder performs formal project planning, and whether they will be able to deliver your project in the time frame that you require. Ensure that any dates promised will be written into your Contract.
– Has the Builder been involved in any disputes?
Does the Builder have any current or past disputes? The WA Building Commission can help verify this, contact them on 1300 489 099.
– Does the Builder use a Standard Building Contract?
Does the Builder use a standardised Building Contract? Without a contract both parties would be mad to proceed. Furthermore, if the contract is ‘home-made’ proceed with caution. Standard contracts provided by reputable organisations such as the HIA provide peace of mind, and guarantee that both parties are being treated fairly. If a Builder suggests that a Contract is not required and that a handshake will do, run a mile!