When it comes to building a house, who hasn’t taken a sweat to choose construction companies? Advice from friends can be risky, and it is better to be wary of overly tempting quotes … How do you navigate? Choosing a good entrepreneur, differentiating the good from the bad?
Your house building project is ready to go, the financing is settled with the bank, all you have to do is build … Of course, you start looking for a single-family home construction company, to ensure your site. To choose the different contractors or the general construction contractor for all trades, the following tips may help you:
1. Recommendations from relatives… to be considered with caution!
Mostly, I see individuals choosing a construction company because of a recommendation from a friend or family. Of course, that’s a plus. But that’s far from enough. Indeed, the quality of a construction company cannot be summed up in a single (small) site! If everyone around you advises you on the same construction company, sign with your eyes closed, but if you only have one positive opinion … read on.
2. Duration of activity of the construction company
Did the business open less than 3 years ago, or has it been in business for 10 years? Unfortunately, some unscrupulous entrepreneurs open and close structures as they go, and leave unhappy customers behind … But not you, because you will have verified the company data before signing.
The legal status of your entrepreneur can play a role. Indeed, a home building contractor is often under the status of craftsman, in his own name. This means that he signs on his behalf and is accountable to you. You therefore have recourse in the event of an unexpected work stoppage.
Because this is not the case if you sign a contract with a general construction company, which would go into liquidation just at the time of your work.
To be sure of the financial health of your contractor and to prevent him from stopping the site along the way, it is best to still ensure his financial health.
- Contractor’s references
Before committing to a construction company on the ‘job of a lifetime’, ask for references. If the entrepreneur seems worried, be extra careful. On the contrary, he should be happy to be able to show you his best achievements. And don’t hesitate to ask for the opinions of former customers on all criteria: respect for budget, deadline, quality of finishes, and durability. Listen!
The company’s estimate must be made on the basis of plans. And these plans … must be drawn up by a third party (architect, or design office), otherwise there is an obvious conflict of interest! Indeed, to win the market for the construction of your house, the contractor has every interest in reducing the necessary materials, at the risk of “undersizing” important elements (i.e. big long-term problems). Plans and calculista are essential, among other things so that you can compare quotes on the same basis.
7. Quality label
This last point is only a ‘plus’, you should not rule out a construction company that seems serious, if it does not have a quality label. Few general construction companies take the step to ask for it, especially since it is not free. All these labels do not mean the same thing, and do not have the same value. As a general rule, prefer a label issued by a public body, and in any case, do not hesitate to go to the site of the said label to find out more.