One of the most expensive purchases a person will make in their lifetime is the acquisition of a new home. In reality, how many Canadians truly understand or are prepared to deal with all aspects of buying a home?
The following are a few simple and easy ways home buyers can educate and protect themselves; specifically when choosing a home builder:
Ask how long the builder has been building for. Many newer or inexperienced builders rely too heavily on the trades to build the home properly. This is a common mistake; in an effort to maximize their profit, trades people will often take shortcuts throughout the building process. Experienced builders recognize this and carefully oversee the entire project to prevent these shortcuts from occurring.
- Do not simply ask for references, instead ask for specific locations the builder has worked, then go directly to these homes and look for yourself. Knock on doors and ask the homeowners if they were satisfied with their builder.
- Find out who the builder’s warranty provider is. Call the warranty company and ask if they are in good standing. If the builder has their own “in-house” warranty program, ask if it has been certified by Service Alberta (formerly Consumer and Corporate Affairs). In Alberta, all Warranty programs must be approved and certified by the Government.
Once you’ve found the builder who is the right fit for you, the next important step becomes the possession walk-through. The purpose of a possession walk-through is to confirm that work on your home is complete and satisfactory, as well as to identify any outstanding issues. If you don’t feel comfortable completing this on your own, simply let your builder know you want to bring someone with you. Take your time, ask many questions and remember this process is about you, not the builder.
New home buyers, do you understand your New Home Warranty? Do you need help dealing with your builder? Or are you perhaps just starting to look for a new home? Warranty Smarts can help you! The first company of its kind in Canada, Warranty Smarts can provide assistance at any time during the first year of possession of your newly built home. Whether that assistance is to help you better understand your warranty, or to help deal with issues between you and the builder, we will be there to guide you.