Building (main) : Building How To


Building How To

So when do you call a builder? Most people think they know, but did you realise that aside from domestic building and commercial construction building contractors have expertise in:

  1. Renovation
  2. Maintenance
  3. Landscaping
  4. Retail fit-out
  5. Office space
  6. Deconstruction

So, there are many occasions on which you may need the skills of a quality builder.

What to look for in your builder

Of course, we’re all different. So one person’s priority, may not be high on the next person’s list. But when it comes to building, there are factors you can’t ignore, like:

  1. Project management
  2. Workplace Safety
  3. Quality standards

Whether you’ve got plans you need a quote for, or you’ve got an end-to-end project choose a builder who won’t compromise on these. Doing so could cost a great deal in the long run ... money and heartache.


Where to find a quality builder

A good place to start is with family and friends. Bad news travels fast. So anyone with a good experience who is prepared to make a recommendation is worth listening to. Many builders can also provide client testimonials and offer contact details for past clients appearing in their portfolio of work.

No investigation is really complete without checking complaint history too. This information is usually available from Consumer Affairs. Some industry organisations, such as Master Builders, also have dispute resolution centres you can check with.


Things to consider

Always obtain a comprehensive quote from your builder. If that is done on a project basis, read it thoroughly. Be very clear to define what is included and what is extra. Before you start eyeing off the better tiles or a kitchen in the next category up, it’s a good idea to allocate a 10% contingency for your building project. That’s because, for all sorts of reasons, costs often run over.

You need to be conscious of time also. Good builders have a work pipeline and will need advance warning of your confirmed project. Don’t expect a high quality building contractor to be able to drop everything and start next week.

You may also need to factor in time for manufacture and supply of preferred building components. Ask your builder, who is much better placed to advise there.

Lastly, plan some extra time into the building schedule. Even with the best project management, weather, supply problems and any number of other factors can cause your building project to run over time.

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