Is building a new home the right choice for me?
One of the first things to consider is whether to buy an existing home or build a new one.
Location may be your main priority, and of course affordability plays a big part, but you should also consider the benefits of a new home over existing:
- New homes will meet newer, more rigid, building and compliance standards, e.g. new homes will be double glazed and better insulated.
- Better quality materials.
- You get what you want, a home designed for your family and lifestyle.
- Less ongoing maintenance.
- No messy renovations.
- And generally speaking a new home gives you better performance and more chance of equity.
- When it comes time to sell – will it be easier to resell a newly built home?
Tip: G.J.’s can help you find a section to build on!
Where to Start?
Once you’ve decided to build, there are a number of people who you may need to talk to for advice:
Bank Manager / Mortgage Advisor
Real Estate Agent
Friends and Family
We suggest that your builder is the first person to talk with because:
They have a lot more experience when it comes to building.
They can explore land and sections with you and explain how to make the most of your site.
They will be able to provide pricing.
Choosing a Builder
Choosing your builder is quite possibly the most important decision you will make. They will be with you for the entire journey. They don't have to be your friend, but you do need to feel comfortable with them and you will put an enormous amount of trust in them.
- Here are some question we suggest that you ask your builder:
- Ask your builder to support or substantiate any claims they might make.
- Ask to see homes they have completed to get a sense of their track record.
- Get credit references from their supply chain and trades.
- Ask for customer references.
- Is there a team of people to help them in the background?
- Who will you contact if you’re not happy?
- How long is your builder or building company going to be around for?
- Is there added value by using a well-known builder?
- Can your builder advise you on council requirements for resource consents and subdivisions?
- Can your builder design and make changes to cater for your specific needs?
- What buying power does your builder have, can they get discounts off products?
- Finally at the end of the build: Who is checking on their workmanship? And what safeguards do you have?
Tip: At G.J. Gardner Homes we welcome comparisons. We recognise that most people shop around before deciding on a builder for their new home and have even created a checklist to help you. View our ‘Comparing Apples with Apples’ checklist online here or request a printed copy via this link.
Bring us your Wish List
Now is the time to start thinking about what you need in a new home versus what you want?
Put your dreams and wishes onto paper and start forming an idea of what’s important to you in your new home. Our ‘Home Prep’ brochure has great cut-out pages in the back which can help; request your own copy via this link.
Bring your plans, scribbles, or just a mindful of ideas and meet our team. One of our friendly sales consultants can show you the possibilities for your new home. We have lots of experience in helping to turn your best ideas into something that’s workable and cost effective.
Ask your builder to review your site (before you purchase it)
Have you found the location of your dreams? Before you sign up for the land we strongly recommend you get a builder to have a look at the site and get their opinion.
Or if you need some help sourcing a great section we can help with that too. Our sales team have great relationships with developers and realtors; we can help guide you on what sections are available now and what subdivisions may be opening soon.
Some key things to consider about a site:
- Site contour – how flat/steep is your site? Remember that a sloping site will add additional earthworks costs.
- What’s under the surface? Getting a geo-technical report now may help to prevent unexpected costs later on.
- Site drainage
- Site aspect? Which direction will your house face? Do you have picturesque views to take into account?
- Are there any covenants on the land that may limit height or range of materials you can build with?
Decide on the home you want
Be inspired by our wide array of plan ranges. These plans can often be simply adapted and modified without great expense meaning they can be customised for your section.
We can build from original designs created by architects, and can also assist in developing plans from rough concept scribbles.
Click here to view our designs.
Concepts and Quotes
Most of our plans are pre-priced so you can quickly get an idea of the home you can have within your desired budget. We will explain the specifications and inclusions so that you know exactly what’s provided, or we can price your design very quickly.
With all our plans we can add, change or delete elements to customise the plan to suit your lifestyle.
Plans, Contract & Deposit
We may now ask for a small preliminary deposit to cover the costs we start to incur as we assess your site (which may involve geotechnical inspections and/or engineering reports) and as we finalise your ideas and prepare final concept plans.
Final Plans, Contract & Paperwork
Once we have agreed your final concept plans, we prepare and present you with a documents folder including the building contract, final plans, specifications, and a construction guarantee. It’s a good idea to have your lawyer review our building contract too. The contract also sets out the payment schedule (when you need to pay for the various stages of construction).
Once all the paperwork is approved we can start the consenting process. And remember that at this stage we won’t be able to provide you an exact move-in date because there are so many things outside our control. We will however detail how long construction should take once your site is ready for us to begin.
Permits, Consents & Red Tape
We deal with councils and building authorities every day, so we make sure we are familiar with local requirements. We can take charge of all the paperwork and help with prompt approvals. We will prepare working drawings, get engineers sign-off, and prepare and lodge your building consent.
Once we have submitted your consent application to council, we will arrange for our colour consultant to meet with you and help choose colours and finishing items. This is your chance to really personalise your new home.
The first stage of construction is to prepare the site; this is when the bobcats/ diggers will prepare the platform in the ground. Any retaining walls needed may be completed at this time and there may even be a requirement to let soil and fill settle, so don’t be impatient if progress appears to be slow, we have it all under control.
Base & Foundations
The foundations will be dug and set, and next the concrete slab will be poured to form the floor. For the first time you can see the footprint of exactly where your house will sit.
Framing (1-3 weeks)
Wall framing will be erected and roof framing will be set into position. This is an exciting time as now you can really visualise your home. This stage of construction feels most exciting as changes to the house are happening very rapidly.
Close In (3-5 weeks)
The roof goes on, the exterior wall cladding is fixed and windows are installed. For the first time your house starts to looks like a home. You can now start to see what your finished home will look like.
Fixing/Interiors (3-5 weeks)
Now we start work on the inside; plumbers and electricians will plumb and wire your home, insulation (i.e. Pink Batts) is fitted, wall linings (i.e. GIB board) are secured, and our painters will apply your chosen paint colours.
Final Fit Off (3-5 weeks)
The last stage of construction will see your kitchen installed, bathrooms finished, tiles and carpets laid and all of the finishing touches like towel rails, door handles and the like.
On completion of your new home we will perform a quality-control check and arrange the final council inspection if required. We’ll also get your home fully cleaned before you move in. You’ll now need to make final payment and then we can hand you the keys and celebrate your new home.
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