Note: This is not a list of most frequently asked questions, but rather the questions you SHOULD be asking when choosing a solid builder. One that you will be comfortable working with AND who will build you the home you want.
Q. Are you licensed?
A. Yes... and there's so much more to the story that you need to know as a wise shopper for a competent builder:
Currently, in Jefferson County, the building commission requires that those engaged in the building trade of plumbing, electrical, HVAC, or septic system installation must be separately licensed for each trade. The County DOES NOT, however, perform testing nor require a license to operate as a General Contractor or Builder.
So the answer, "Yes, I'm licensed." can mean a lot of things. There are actually builders who are only licensed to install septic systems. Would you be okay with the fact that the primary expertise of the person building your house is sewage treatment?
At Wil-Build, we have an entirely different perspective. Holding licenses for HVAC, plumbing, and electrical defines our focus on the actual construction of the home, while leaving the septic system installation to sub-contractors who specialize in that single aspect of the project. Our specialty is the home itself.
Q. Are you insured and bonded?
A. Yes. Any builder you consider should provide documentation, particularly proof of worker compensation for all employees working on the site. Failure to do so places full financial liability for any injuries upon you, the property owner. Don't just ask, "are you insured?", ask to see the proof and ensure workers comp. is included. Wil-Build will provide this documentation.
Q. How much experience do you have?
A. We are one of the most experienced builders in Jefferson County today.
Q. May I see your references?
A. A reference list is available to our clients. Any builder who has built hundreds of homes can provide a handful of testimonials, so in addition to asking our prior clients, we also challenge you to do a little more. Ask your title company, the bank or lender. You can even call the county building commission office or any of the county inspectors about each of the contractors you are considering. You should hear an overwhelmingly positive response in general.
Q. What is your policy on change?
A. Change happens. It is good to understand from the onset that a healthy relationship between builder and homeowner is based upon a seemingly endless string of questions that the builder provides. As each answer is given by the homeowner, the building crew executes. For each of these choices, there is a critical point where changes can no longer be made without impacting further work. Once past this point, changes usually cost money and will adversely affect the budget. There may be valid and even unavoidable reasons for change, even past this critical point, but we promise to leverage the sum of all our years of experience, all of our purchasing influence, our ingenuity, and superior performance and our strong relationships with sub-contractors in order to do whatever we can to shelter your plan from undesired change. If it must happen, we will show you the reason, the consequences, and the options and allow you to choose.
Of course, many changes you might make, prior to the critical point, will have little or no impact on the project timing. Not all changes are costly. In fact, it's common for us to offer "change options" that will reduce the overall budget without impact to the quality or finished look. We believe that finding ways to get you the "most house for the money" is a fundamental part of our job.
Q. Do you handle permits and zoning?
A. Yes. In fact, one of our company owners has served on an advisory committee for the county building code.
Q. How do I know you are a professional?
A. These are some objective points to consider when deciding how professional your builder is:
Q. I hear you are expensive. Is that true?
A. We are often called upon by clients to provide upscale construction or remodeling. We have the skills and systems to meet their needs. While this high-profile work draws attention, we complete as many as 30 or more mid to modest jobs during the same year. At Wil-Build Construction, we strive to bring good value to all our clients. From large custom homes to the smallest home service job, we work diligently to meet the objective for each project, whether meticulously attending to the budget delivery or carefully constructing the most extravagant of dreams.