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  • Considering new construction? How to choose a home builder

    Saturday, October 8, 2022   /   by Amy Brown

    Considering new construction? How to choose a home builder

    New construction can be a very tempting option when you just can't find what you are looking for in the market. 

    There are two key elements when looking to build:
    1. Land allocation
    2. Finding the right builder

    Today we are going to talk about the right questions to ask and what to look for when interviewing builders. 

    You want to do this in two stages; preliminary investigation and the personal interview.

    Preliminary investigation:
    1. Visit the builder's recently built homes and subdivisions
    2. Drive by on a weekend and speak to the homeowners. Ask them if they are pleased with their home? Would they buy from this builder again? Does the builder promptly address warranty items?
    3. Visit home shows and builder open houses to examine the quality of the build and materials used.
    4. Research what architectural style will be best suited for the land that you prefer. For example, if your land is perched on a mountain ridge, a ranch style home may not be conducive to that parcel.
    5. Plan out your budget to include land allocation, infrastructure (road and utilities), type of foundation needed, and architecture. Case in point, an A-frame is much more expensive to build than a 2-story arts and crafts. In addition, it is always less expensive to build up than it is to build out so a 1-story ranch may not fit into your budget due to foundation costs.

    Personal interview:

    1. How long has the builder been in business?
    2. Do they specialize in one type of architecture or do they have experience in various types of builds?
    3. Will the builder give you references of recent buyers/occupants?
    4. Does the builder have a financing plan established?
    5. Are there options in the floor plan — for example, can a basement or deck be added?
    6. Can a room such as the basement be left unfinished?
    7. How much “customizing” can be done versus standard features?
    8. Can appliances be up- or down-graded?
    9. Are there any additional fees relating to the home or development?
    10. Will there be a home owners’ association? If so, what will the dues cost and what do they cover?
    11. Does the builder offer a warranty program?
    12. Does the price include landscaping? What if the plants die within a year?
    13. Are there any restrictive covenants?
    14. What type of utilities will be used on this particular piece of land? City vs. well/septic

    Questions to ask your realtor:

    1. What are the estimated taxes on the property?
    2. How is the school system rated?
    3. Are day care and grocery stores convenient and satisfactory?
    4. What about emergency facilities — police, fire department and hospitals?
    5. Are there any major development plans for the area in the next five years?

    Recommended builders in the Asheville area:

    Wanoca Builders - custom and unique build projects

    Buchanan Construction - luxury customs

    Livingstone Construction - luxury customs

    Jade Mountain Builders - mountain modern

    JAG Construction - Green built - Green built and sustainable homes

    Let me know if I can answer any questions for you or make further recommendations. That's what I'm here for!