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6 Must-Know Building New Home Tips for Beginners

Couple planning the build a new home and looking at blueprints

If you’re building a new home for the first time, there’s bound to be plenty of things you’re unsure of, or simply have never thought of. If you want to avoid common building mistakes, it’s a good idea to do your research and ensure you’re well-prepared before you start the building process. Here are our top building new home tips, as Bundaberg home builders, to help first-time home buyers go through the process smoothly.

1. Plan, plan, plan

Your dream home can only come to life with careful planning and consideration. This involves a variety of factors from the neighborhood you want to live in through to the block of land you choose, and eventually, the house plans you decide on. Take the time to research all aspects of your build and weigh the pros and cons of each decision.

A good place to start is researching the neighborhood you’d like to live in. Do you need a school or daycare nearby? Would you like to live within walking distance of the shops or park? Would you prefer a quiet street, or does a busy road not bother you? Think through these questions as you research online, or simply go for a drive through your local area to get a feel for the place. Next, look into your land options, and of course, your house plans.

2. Pick the builder that’s right for you

Building a new home can be a stressful period, but it shouldn’t be. Choosing the right builder for you means having someone that is trustworthy, reliable, and able to deliver the home of your dreams within realistic expectations. Some questions you might want to ask when looking for a builder include:

  • Reputation - what do previous clients say about the builder? Are there reviews you can read, or a local you can talk to?

  • Reliability - what sort of assurances do they make for their work and their timeframes? Does it seem realistic, or are they promising more than they can deliver?

  • Location - is the builder local? Will there be any travel costs involved if you don’t build within a certain radius?

  • Communication - do you feel like you can have a good relationship with the main contacts? Do the staff listen to you and help you feel heard?

  • Price - how do they compare to other builders in the region? Lowest isn’t always best… but neither is most expensive! Compare builders across all fronts to ensure you land the one that suits you.

Come prepared with all your ideas

Builder speaking with new home building client on job site

If you’re designing a custom home, the clearer picture you have of your house, the better. Bring along a scrapbook or Pinterest board with all the things you love about other homes you’ve seen, as well as any features you particularly dislike or want to avoid. It’s great to come in with an open mind and some wiggle room in your ideal plans, but sharing your vision with your designer will help ensure a smooth design and build process.

Even if you’re planning on choosing a builder’s standard house plans, you should still have an idea of the basics including how many rooms you’re after, how big or small a home you’re interested in, and any special features you’d like such as an alfresco or entertainment room. We recommend bringing in a list of your “must haves” and a list of “would be nice”. That way your builder can go over different price points and work within your budget to choose or design new house plans that you’ll love.

Think about your furniture early

It’s easy when building a home to focus on the big picture and forget the details. But the last thing you want is to get the keys to your house, only to find that your dream fridge doesn’t fit in your kitchen layout or your antique lounge is too long for the living room wall. While you don’t need to plan out your entire decor, if there are any furnishings or fittings that are essential, it’s a good idea to make sure they’ll fit in the space you have, in the arrangement you want.

We also recommend thinking about appliances early on. A media room, for example, might require additional power outlets than standard, or you might opt for outlets added to your butler’s pantry. Whatever the case may be, have a chat to your builder about any concerns you have regarding the final stages of the build, and share any necessary details that you want to be included so that you, and your builder, aren’t surprised later.

Budget a little extra

One tip you’re sure to hear over and over again is to budget more than you expect. Many first-time home builders presume that the estimate they receive from their builder is all-inclusive. However, a builder’s initial estimate may not include items such as fences, landscaping, or window treatments. Make sure when getting a price from your builder that you understand what’s included and what’s not, so you can plan your budget accordingly.

As well as extra building costs, there are a number of other fees that you might not have considered such as building application fees, solicitor’s fees and site costs. Do your research to make sure you’ve budgeted appropriately for all the behind-the-scenes aspects of your build, and again, add a little extra for unforeseen circumstances.

Communicate with your builder as much as you need

No one expects you to be an expert when building your first home. It’s perfectly normal to have questions about the building process, so don’t be afraid to ask your builder lots of questions both during the initial consultation and throughout your build. Of course, your builder won’t have much of an update for you if you call every day of the week to ask how things are progressing, but a good builder will try to keep you informed at every major milestone along the way.

The building process can take several months to complete, so establish a good rapport with your builder and don’t be afraid to reach out if you have any questions or concerns.

Looking at building your own home in Bundaberg? Our expert Bundaberg home builders are ready to share more building new home tips, whether you’re a beginner or a veteran. Contact us today to arrange a consultation and learn more about our custom homes.

About the author

CRJ Designer Homes

CRJ Designer Homes

CRJ Designer Homes is a locally owned, family operated building company. Since being established in 2006, Michael and his wife Gillian have made it their goal to build quality homes at exceptional prices, with inclusions that most would consider as an extra!

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