While every builder will have different areas of expertise, there are certain things every builder will have in common, and key information all construction professionals should be able to provide - whether it’s for a renovation, a new build or a larger, more complex project.
Deciding to build a house or begin the process of a renovation can often represent one of the largest financial commitments of a person’s life. With this in mind, it’s important to engage a builder who is an expert in the style of building your project represents, and a person or company that is compatible with the rest of the design and project team.
What to ask before engaging a builder
Can I see a portfolio of your work?
Are there past clients I can speak with?
What are your areas of speciality?
What is your record with handing over projects on time and on budget?
What licences and/or qualifications do you and your team have?
Do you see any challenges in my project, and how would you deal with these?
What are the options for construction project management?
There are a range of options for managing a residential building or renovation project, ranging from client-led to hiring an external project manager or engaging an architect or builder to manage the project.
In architecturally-designed projects, it is common for the architect to stay on after the designs are consented and manage the build. This is often the preference of the architect, especially if the project represents a complex design and resulting build.
A building contractor will also commonly manage residential projects, taking over from the designer or architect once plans are consented.
Why should you engage renovators?
Renovation experts specialise in improving existing areas of homes and buildings, or extending an existing structure. They bring expertise around environmental considerations, choice of materials, keeping within budget and holding reasonable programme expectations.
Professional renovators have strong networks so can engage proven specialists if required for work needing specific expertise – so they are generally a much better option than risking a DIY approach to your renovations.
Other specialists that may be required for a building project include:
Plumbers and drainlayers
Stone, concrete and paving professionals for masonry work
Painters and plasterers
Consultants, including geotechnical, civil contractors and structural engineers
Commercial projects may require roading or earthworks professionals, and a range of engineering consultants