Building a Home
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Posted by: KB | on June 15, 2018
You drive into a brand new subdivision that XYZ Homes is building. There is construction going on all over the place and you fall in love with one of the models. Next stop is the sales office. There you meet a very nice salesperson that would love to help you purchase a brand new home. STOP!
That sales agent is a realtor. A realtor that works on commissions from sales of these new XYZ Homes. If you put yourself under contract today, you have just handed that realtor the golden ticket, that is they get both commissions for the home: the buyer’s (yours) and the seller’s (XYZ Homes). That person is now working for you and for XYZ Homes. In the event of an issue (and there will be issues), who is that realtor really representing? (Hint: you represent one sale. XYZ Homes represents several dozen sales.)
Do yourself a favor and get your own realtor to represent you. In the event of a dispute or issue, your realtor is your advocate and will negotiate on your behalf.
Secondly, get a home inspector that is familiar with new construction to watch your house while it is being built. Typically, this is done in phases over the construction process with reports at each phase. Normal phases can include: Footer, slab, lintel, frame or pre-sheetrock, and final. These phases represent major milestones in the home’s building process.
The sooner you get your inspector on board, the better your home inspector can watch out for you as your home is built. Don’t rely on the builder or the code inspector to look out for you. The code inspector (city or county depending on where your home is built) only has a certain list of things that they are concerned with checking. The code inspector often has between 20 and 50 homes to inspect PER DAY. How much time is that person spending on your home?
And the builder’s standard commnet is “It passed code.” That is like saying you passed high school with straight “D”s. Code is the bare minimum standard, not the best standard.
Most builders are only concerned with how many homes they close this quarter. Honestly, if they are a production home builder, their biggest concern is cost. If they can save $100 on 1000 homes, someone gets a great end-of-year bonus. Their subcontractors (all of the trades) are often chosen on the cheapest price. They have bid the work cheap and now have to figure out how to make a profit when there is very little profit margin.