Consumer tips when dealing with a builder

April 5, 2015

Back to list

Whether building your dream home for the first time, or upgrading to something bigger, the building process can be a daunting experience.

It’s important to remember to ask the right questions and know what to look for before you sign on the dotted line, to make building your new home as seamless and possible.

Max Shifman, Chief Operating Officer at Intrapac Project, said having a checklist can help you avoid costly and annoying mistakes.

“Buyers need to do some basic homework before they commit to a particular builder or house design. They should be asking questions about the inclusions, checking the builder’s credentials, and confirming that the electrical plans meet their needs,” said Max.


Select the right builder: Visit a display home to check the quality of work is up to standard. Speak to other homeowners to see if their experience was positive or negative with your chosen builder. If checking reviews online, bear in mind that those who complain are often far more vocal than those who had a smooth experience!

Check the inclusions: Items such as driveways, window fittings, fences, landscaping, heating and cooling, and floor coverings can sometimes cost extra. These can vary greatly from builder to builder, so plot everything on a spreadsheet to compare what you can get for your dollars.

Select the right colour scheme: Some builders have specialised colour and design consultants to help you make the right decisions, so take advantage of this where available. Take clippings from magazines and create a colour palette showcasing the different textures and colours to see how they go together. Get samples and bring them to the house so you can see them in natural light.

Map your electrical layout: Make sure you have enough power points, lights and electrical switches, and allow for smart wiring – especially with rise in popularity with techno gadgets around the house. Adding these items after the home is built can be a costly exercise.

Check the energy rating: With rising energy costs, ask your builder if there are additional ways to make your house design more sustainable. Spending a bit more upfront can save you thousands of dollars in the future.

Read the fine print before signing: Go through contracts carefully and make sure you understand all of the terms and conditions. Ask for clarification or seek advice on anything you are not clear on.

Develop a good relationship with your project manager: Make sure you have good two-way communication. Ask for regular updates on what’s happening and what is coming up so there are no surprises.

Have realistic timeframes: Most builders work to get your home built as soon as possible, but purchasers need to account for unforeseen delays. Have a backup plan for your ultimate move in date, especially if you are renting.

Intrapac has a 30-year reputation of creating high quality developments and designing inspiring environments. The Intrapac portfolio includes the acclaimed Somerfield development located in Keysborough, in the South-East of Melbourne. With 85 per cent of lots at Somerfield already sold, buyers are eagerly anticipating the final releases of premium land in this estate.

The display village at Somerfield showcases homes from some of Australia’s most trusted builders including; Carlisle, Porter Davis, Metricon, Simonds, Esperance, Boutique, Burbank, Arden, Highview and Urbanedge.

For more information, or to arrange an interview please contact:
Zoyee Kartalis, Public Relations Manager for Intrapac on m: 0409 301 975, e:

Notes to editors: Case study families are available upon request.

Related Articles