How to Compare Builders: Quality and Pricing Differences
How do you compare price and quality differences among builders when you are deciding to buy a new home in South Texas? Sometimes builder proposals are so similar there is no discernible difference and sometimes the differences are so big they don’t make sense.
So how are you to know when something sounds too good to be true?
We want our Bentsen Palm buyers to have the information they need when making a new home decision.
How do you go forward when most builders are quoting very similar numbers for the cost of a similar home? Start by looking at reviews, quality, and take a tour of a model home built by the home builder. Research the public information provided on all home builders of interest.
Side by Side Comparisons
Putting a recently built home side by side gives you a point of comparison. Find homes for sale with a similar price and quality range in like subdivisions built by both builders. Use these homes as a price and quality comparison as you go forward. Is it really the same home, or were modifications made? Has “cheap” builder installed the same hardware in the bathrooms or the same quality hot water heater? Sometimes everything is on the up and up, but searching out the information will help you to discern what’s really going on.
Know The Details
The “devil is in the details”. The reason some builders quote really low numbers is that they know that often clients are willing to accept less expensive alternatives to get a price down. It’s often a judgment call on their part. Every time a customer says, “I’d like a cast iron sink instead of stainless in my kitchen, please”, that adds to cost. So some builders will just make the decision to add the stainless sink and not mention that the competitors all install cast iron. You don’t want to get into a position where you are half-way through a build, and the lack of upgrades comes to light. Things like landscaping, carpet upgrades, and inexpensive appliances can easily add up to $20/sq ft. So just be aware of what is going into the home up front so that an apples to apples comparison is possible.
Be aware that things that seem too good to be true, usually are.
Do your homework so you won’t be unsettled during the build process. You don’t want a long, frustrating road that results in unexpected money spent on upgrades and an unsatisfying experience building your dream home.