What to look for from custom home builders in Vancouver

With the amount of development, it should come as no surprise that there is a wide array of custom home builders in Vancouver. This can be positive as it gives homeowners a good selection to choose from. At the same time, the choice can become overwhelming.

How do you know if a custom home builder is right for you?

There are a few key elements to check for before hiring the right team for your project.

What to look for in custom home builders in Vancouver

1. Experience

This is at the top of our list. In any city, it is risky to work with inexperienced custom home builders. In Vancouver, however, the level of bureaucratic red tape makes it a downright gamble. That is why we suggest working with a team with a number of projects already under their belt.

2. A strong portfolio

Experience is important, but on its own, it is not enough. You also want to make sure that any custom home builders you work with in Vancouver create projects that appeal to you. The best way to know if that is the case is to look over the company’s portfolio. As you review the portfolio, ask yourself:

  • Does the company have a set standard of operations?
  • If so, is it one that fits with your needs and your home’s style?
  • If not, is the company flexible enough to achieve what you are looking for?

Have doubts about a custom home builders’ abilities to complete your project successfully? Ask for additional information, such as references, or move on to another team who seems like a better fit for you.

3. References

In addition to style, you also want to look into the quality of your potential custom home builders’ work. This can be done through references. Make sure to ask for a number of references and speak with all of them, focusing on their homes’ quality level and inquire about any issues that have arisen.

If you have specific requirements for your build, like your house being a passive home, we recommend requesting references from projects with similar parameters.

When you speak with references, you may also want to ask them about how the build went. Did they stick to your budget? Was the estimated timeline met? Were there any significant issues? Do you feel that the builder listened to your needs and worked with your best interests in mind?

4. A clear quote

Every custom home builder in Vancouver should be able to provide you with a clear quote for your project. Of course, this is only possible if you have a plan for your project. If you have more of a loose sense of what you want to do, ask for a price range for your type of project.

Before you begin work, though, make sure to get a quote specific to the work you are having done.

You should also review what is covered in the quote and what is not. Again, this information should be given to you freely. If you feel like a custom home builder is being evasive, they may be setting the stage for hidden costs to pop up over the course of the work.

Save yourself the money and hassle of this scenario by walking away now.

5. Relationships with custom home designers

You can tell a lot about a custom home builder in Vancouver by the custom home designers they work with. After all, professionals who excel at their work tend to develop relationships with other professionals who excel at their work. Therefore, another check we recommend is asking custom home builders about the custom home designers they have relationships with.

These relationships can also assist you if you are still looking for a custom home designer for your project.

6. Knowledge of building permits

You should never work with a custom home builder in Vancouver who lacks a clear sense of building permits and the regulations around construction.

Why does this matter so much?

Well, first and foremost, because you are responsible for any errors. A lack of knowledge on the part of your builder is not an acceptable defence. Therefore, having a custom home builder who does not know the regulations and building permits could lead to you being fined, having to tear out work that has been done, or worse.

With the tangled web of building permits and regulations in Vancouver and surrounding cities, having a high level of knowledge is especially important. That is why we suggest asking each company’s references about any issues that arose around building permits and regulations.

7. Trustworthiness

There are two ways you can establish trustworthiness. The first is checking up on custom home builders. You can do this by reading reviews online. You can also ask references about whether the company seemed trustworthy. We also recommend double-checking information you have been told about things like how long the company has been in business or their level of experience. Should you encounter any lies, this should be a deal-breaker.

The second way to gauge trustworthiness is less precise but equally valuable. It is good, old-fashioned gut feeling. To us, it is as simple as this: Do not work with anyone who makes you feel uncomfortable.

8. Excellent communication skills

You have to spend a lot of time communicating with your custom home builders. You have to be able to have frank discussions about timelines, budgets, and other key aspects of your project. In addition, you have to have faith that your custom home builders can translate your wants and needs into your new home or renovation. All of this relies on there being excellent communication between you and your custom home builder.

Given this, we strongly advise paying attention to how your prospective builder communicates with you. As you speak with them, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Do I understand what they are saying?
  • Are they clear?
  • Are they upfront and honest?
  • Are they pleasant to speak with?
  • Do they seem to respect me?
  • Do they take my wants and needs into consideration?
  • Do I feel safe asking questions?

If you answer “no” to any of these questions, it is worth looking at alternative custom home builders in Vancouver.

The most important thing to remember when looking at custom home builders in Vancouver…

You have the power.

At the beginning of this blog, we spoke about how many custom home builders there are in Vancouver. This level of choice means you never have to feel stuck with specific builders. Instead, with a bit of time and energy, you can make sure you work with someone who is perfect for you and your project.

Are you ready to move forward with a new build or renovation? Not sure which custom home builder in Vancouver is right for you? Contact us to get a quote and discuss why we are the perfect fit for your project.



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