Choosing a Builder - Step 2

The right Builder can make your new home project a reality!

Home DesignThe majority of custom home Builders in Brisbane are excellent Builders. In choosing a Builder here are some suggestion you should consider in your search for the builder best suited to your specific needs.


Are they a member of the Housing Industry Association or Master Builders Association of Queensland?

Most builders who belong to this organization are professionals with a long term reputation in the community. These are self policing organization with membership consisting of long term professionals in the industry. In order to be a HIA or QMBA member the builder must comply with the HIA and QMBA code of ethics.


Do they represent the workmanship you desire? Look closely at the homes the Builder has completed and has under construction.

Request the names of several of the most recent customers he has completed homes for. Call the customer and ask them for their recommendation.


Has he furnished you with complete plans, specifications, and a firm price for the home?

You should feel comfortable with your Builder and have a rapport with him.


The builder should have experience in the size, type, and price range of home that you are contemplating. Ask to see homes he has completed in this area or price range.

You may only be able to view the homes from the street, but this should tell you about his experience and the type of homes he builds. Each builder employs trades people to create your home. If a Builder builds predominantly lower priced homes he will normally use the same trades people for your home. If a builder builds predominantly executive homes he will use trades people who are experienced primarily in that quality of home. This is very important since the quality of your home will be only as good as those who helped create it.

"Put everything in writing. There will be no disputes if it is in writing and signed by both parties."


Is he a full time home builder? Does he appear organized? He should present you with plans, specifications, etc. that appear professional. Does he have an office and an experienced staff?

Your builder should be licensed by the QBSA. This requires very strict criteria plus evidence of past experience and expertise in the field he is building in. The QBSA requires the builder to renew this license on a annual basis. He must provide the QBSA with current financial information, insurance certificates, etc. Do not contract with any Builder who is not licensed.


Ask to see the license for the company and be absolutely sure that the principal is the license holder and not an employee. Do not take this for granted!

You should make sure that the principal of the company is the license holder for the company. The license is the glue that holds the builder's firm together and the builder does not want to risk that license. However, from time to time a building firm will use an employee as a license holder. The problem with this is, should a problem occur, your recourse is with the license holder who may not be an owner of the company.


Call the QBSA and ask for references.

As stated above, you should find out who really owns the company. Sometimes things are really not what they appear. For example, the builder could have the greatest name in the country, but you might be contracting with a joint venture of his or a franchise operation of that builder. If this is the case you should forget the name of the known builder and determine the strength of the actual parties involved. Are there venture partners? Who actually owns the franchise? You need to know their experience, financial record, previous local customer references, and more. If the contract states that you are contracting with anyone different than who you think you are this should be an immediate red flag!

When comparing proposals for homes it is essential that you compare apples to apples. It is easy to lower the price by using lesser quality material, not including amenities, ceiling height differences, leaving soil problems open, and much more. You should carefully compare, item by item, what is being proposed. If there is a large variance between two builder's prices for a similar home the difference will almost always be the quality!

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