Your home is looking a little tired or you are needing more space for a growing family, so you’ve decided to renovate. Congratulations! Now it’s time to decide on who you will entrust to renovate your home.
The process of choosing a builder is as important, if not more important, than any of the design choices you will make during the renovation. You need to find a builder you can trust, that can understand your vision for the project and deliver to the quality and standard you require. To get you on the right track to finding the perfect renovation builder, we have provided a list of key things to consider when researching and meeting with prospective builders.
Factors to consider when choosing a renovation builder in Perth
Reputation and reviews
Perth is small and, more often than not, word of mouth is how you will start to find out about renovation builders in your area. It is your friends, family and colleagues you trust the most, so ask around about who they have chosen to renovate their homes. Sites such as Houzz are also a good starting point to find local renovation builders and to read client reviews and testimonials. Builders will have images of previous projects on their profiles, so you can have a look at the style of homes they typically work on.
Your chosen builder should also be a member of reputable associations such as the Master Builders Association and the Housing Industry Association – their websites can provide details of registered builders.
Skills and experience
You might already have a clear vision in mind, or own a home that needs specific attention, so make sure the builder you choose has the skills to complete the type of renovation you are looking for. For example, if you want a second storey addition, then you will need to ensure the builder has the team and experience to pull it off.
While if you own a heritage home, it is important to find a builder that is familiar with renovating older homes and can maintain its charm and character whilst incorporating modern, convenient and stylish design features.
Friendly team with great communication
You are going to be spending a fair amount of time with your builder and they will be visiting and working on your home for at least a couple of months, so it’s worth finding a builder you get along with and one who understands both your needs and your vision.
It’s a long-term professional relationship you have with your builder, so you also want to ensure they communicate well. Keeping you in the loop with all things, whether that be via phone call, email or an online platform will be essential. Make sure to ask about how they usually keep in touch with clients during the building process.
There’s no point in dealing with a friendly builder who delivers a fantastic product if you could have the same service from his competitor at a cheaper price. However, there are pitfalls to choosing your builder based on price alone. You need to be certain that you are getting the best value for money.
When comparing quotes, make sure that the building specifications have not only the same inclusions but the same quality of inclusions. Cutting corners during the quotation process may give you a very attractive fixed price, but how much could it cost you in variations after contract, when you decide that you would like to upgrade your selections? Look carefully at the exclusions – how much are you going to be left to do after the builder has finished?
Locally owned and operated
Another important factor to consider is whether the builder is locally-based. There are substantial benefits to working with a renovation builder who knows Perth well, is across the rules and approval processes of your local council and has previous projects in the area that you can look at.
Finding the right builder for your project is key to the success of your renovation. Your home is your pride and joy, so don’t rush the process. A common mistake is that homeowners don’t do their due diligence. To ensure you have all the information you need to make this important decision, there are some questions you should ask your prospective builder.
Questions to ask when selecting a renovation builder
- Is our quotation a fixed price?
- How long is the quotation valid?
- How can we be sure that everything we want has been included in the quotation?
- What happens if we want to make changes to our plans and/or scope of works?
- Do we have access to an interior designer who specialises in kitchen and bathroom design? If so, is this service free or is there a charge?
- Are the provisional sum allowances for cabinetry and benchtops realistic – are they likely to be close to actual final costs?
- Are the prime cost allowances for plumbing fixtures and fittings appropriate – are they suitable for the style and value of our home?
- Do we have to organise council approvals or is this done for us?
- Once we have signed a building contract, how long will it take for the job to start?
- Who will communicate with us during the building process?
- Can you provide us with contact details of at least ten past clients who will discuss their experience with your building company?
Australian Renovation Group (ARG): a renovation builder of choice in Perth
Australian Renovation Group (ARG) specialises in custom home additions, home renovations and house extensions in Perth. We work with our clients from start to finish: from the initial design process and council approvals, through to the construction and completion phase.
Our online system, CoConstruct, gives our clients access to information about their renovation, enabling them to keep track of the progress and all correspondence and also to make decisions along the way.
Get in touch with ARG
We are in the business of transforming Perth homes and we pride ourselves on developing positive and supportive relationships with our clients. It is this approach, and our attention to quality, that has won us many industry awards over the years.