So how do you complete a house renovation on budget and on time?

First, find a building company that has a proven planning experience. Then discuss with them the importance of your timeline and budget. In our experience, incomplete budgets and estimations are the biggest cause of budget overruns. Besides, more often than not the schedule overruns as well.

We believe in the 7 P’s: “Proper Prior Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance.” It’s true. Plan well. Another word of advice, attributed to Abraham Lincoln, “Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe.”

Knowing when you have found a winning building team is also important, as your builder will not be on the job all the time.

Here are six tips to checking if your building team is likely to “be a winner.”

Tip 1: Ask for a full costing sheet

Ask your prospective building companies to form a full costing sheet that includes every item/cost from beginning to end. It should include estimated costs for the items that usually get left out e.g. whiteware, taps, lighting, kitchen, appliances, finished flooring, hardware, landscaping, 10 year guarantee, full build clean and anything else you can think of. Remember to ask for a full breakdown of the costs so you can compare it with other building company costings correctly. This will give you the ability to prioritise items or to reshuffle.

Tip 2: Large discounts to benefit from building companies

Building companies have access to large discounts. Utilise them! Take time to check the prices of various items. We have had customers so eager to purchase items and get started without checking prices. Note down your prospective first and second choices of items. Then ask your contractors to include these in your house renovation estimate. You’ll get to know which contractor is receiving the biggest buying discounts. Besides, you will be spending more time getting to know your suitable builder or contractor.

Tip 3: Ask for a comprehensive schedule of your project

It should include a realistic start and finish date. The schedule will guide all the various trades and people involved to the finish line. It will give you peace of mind that your project is on track as per plan. This will ultimately relieve your stress levels.

Tip 4: Have a building contract that’s worth having

The Certified Builders Association of New Zealand have great contracts which are easy to understand. Having peace of mind that a larger association is behind you and your builder is great if you have doubts.

Tip 5: A Halo 10 year Guarantee

It’s compulsory for CBANZ builders to offer a Halo 10 year Guarantee. This is one of the most comprehensive construction guarantees on the market. Ask your prospect building companies if they offer any guarantees. [Note: After 25 years of building we are proud of the fact we have never made any claims. We are so confident in our ability to provide a fantastic service we offer our very own YourBuilder 10 point guarantee.]

Tip 6: View previous projects

Visit any prospect building companies previous projects. Try to discuss with the owners how they performed and how it was to deal with them. Find out if the project completed was on time and on budget. If not, find out why. There may have been good reasons (e.g. the owners made changes, or there were unknown factors), or the builder may have just been slow!

Follow these basic tips and you’ll be a lot further to completing your renovation project on time and on budget.

Good luck!

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021 541 392Mon – Fri (8:00am – 5:00pm)
Belmont, Auckland, New Zealand


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