Finding the best builder for your YardPod is essential. An under-performing builder will prove frustrating and cost you money. But by following the below steps you should end up with a builder you can be confident will build the YardPod you want on time and within budget.
You may live in an area that has an abundance of excellent builders who are available to take on your project when you want it done, or there may be a shortage in your area. The following advice represents the ideal situation, most people have to compromise. If there is only an experienced carpenter in your area, you can make that work, as long as he/she has good references.
We Can Help!
After you have purchased your YardPod Construction Plans we can assist you with this process.
Start by creating a list of 10 builder prospects
- Ask for referrals from friends.
- Check the following for builders who are close to you (to minimize travel time). Look for a builder that undertakes small projects, including remodeling.
- Houzz: https://www.houzz.com
- Home Advisor: https://www.homeadvisor.com
- Angie’s List: https://www.angieslist.com/
- Contact your local Builders Association
- Yelp: https://www.yelp.com (Note that Yelp has been known to hide some reviews).
- Check that they are licensed, in good standing by checking your State website.
Contact Each Builder
- Call each builder, if they do not answer, leave a message to tell them that you have a project and would like a call back. If they do not call back in 48 hours, delete them.
- When you talk to them, explain the project and ask if they are interested in submitting a proposal.
- Ask them about similar projects that they have completed, if none similar, then projects of similar size and value.
- Ask for three references of people that they have recently completed projects for.
- Call the references:
- Introduce yourself
- Tell them that you have a construction project and that the builder has given their name as a reference, ask if they could spare a few minutes to give you their honest feedback. (if not when you call, try to schedule an appointment to call back.)
- When you talk to the references, ask them:
- What was you project?
- Was it started and completed on time and on budget?
- Were the workman quiet, and did they clean up every day?
- Is there anything that you should know about the builder?
- Would they use the builder again?
Select the 3 best candidates
- With the information you gather, select what looks like the best three.
- Send a copy of the Construction Plans to each builder together with a cover letter and a simple description of the finishes that you want and any special requests that you have.
- A reputable local builder will want to visit the site and meet you to discuss the project. This is your opportunity to determine whether or not you can be comfortable with each builder. At some point during construction, you will likely want to either correct a mistake, or make a change, judge whether or not you can talk to the builder and whether or not the builder listens to you.
- Ask the builder who will do the work, the builder, his crew, or subcontractors
- When you receive their proposals, check them against your requirements and specification, it is scary how often builders provide proposals which do not match the specification. If necessary, ask for clarification and correction.
Select and sign the winner
- Having met all three, evaluated their references and reviewed their proposals, you should be able to make a decision. Do not necessarily go with the lowest cost.
- You can try to negotiate for a lower price, but if the proposals are in line with your expectations, I do not recommend it. You expect good work, and the builder deserves a fair profit.
- Sign the contract with your selected builder. It should specify stage payments with an initial deposit. Agree a start date, pay the deposit.
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