9 Tips on How to Choose a Builder for Your Property Development

Building new homes for property developers is vastly different from building for homeowners. While, of course, the actual building skills are quite transferrable, the process is different. Building for developers requires a deep understanding of the entire development process, not just how to build a house.

Experienced property developers need builders who are reliable, knowledgeable and skilled. One of the biggest problems for developers is being left holding the bag because they’ve hired an unreliable builder. It’s not uncommon for builders to offer extremely cheap build contracts to gain work with property developers, but plenty of horror stories are out there.

Your initial build contract might be cheap, but how much is that really worth in the long run? For example, if the project takes longer to build or you need to make multiple variations (at your expense) along the way. Then, imagine the build quality isn’t even what you expected. As a developer, you’ve potentially lost out on pre-sales due to delays, or you end up in a legal minefield for selling homes that are full of defects.

In this article, we’ll look at some useful tips for hiring a builder for property development, in particular focusing on the skills and qualities you should look for.

  1. Experience finding cost savings and value

    As we mentioned, more skills and knowledge are required when working with a property developer. They have a budget and expect the builder to meet that. This often requires finding cost savings and efficiencies along the way, whether it be sourcing cost-effective materials, finding ways to save time, or bringing in quality tradespeople who add value to the project.
  2. A clear understanding of the development process

    When building for homeowners, there’s generally a lot of design flexibility that you’ll discuss with the client. However, in a property development scenario, a feasibility study has more than likely been conducted, which outlines the type of property needing to be built. Property development is sometimes about doing more with less, making it quite different from a regular house build.
  3. Knowledge of development approvals

    Building approvals and development approvals are two different kettles of fish. While most builders understand the building approval process in their local area, not all of them have experience obtaining development approvals. Working with a builder who understands this process is invaluable when it comes to keeping the project running on time.
  4. Paid design services

    There is a misconception that property developers want everything for cheap or free. That’s not the case at all, and many would rather have clear and transparent pricing when it comes to design. A lot of builders offer a ‘free’ design service, but you can almost guarantee the cost is built into the quote elsewhere. It’s much better to just operate with clear and honest pricing for everyone.
  5. Budget management

    Many homeowners have horror stories about extra and surprise costs during their build. This is because a lot of builders don’t understand budgeting. They assume that if a home needs something extra, the client will pay for it. Property developers want clear, honest and upfront pricing. There is always room to build contingencies into the budget, but ultimately, it’s the builder who needs to work with the developer’s budget, not the other way around.
  1. Project management experience

    You could argue that building anything is a project, and all builders should know what project management is. This often isn’t the case. They know how to build a home and bring in the necessary tradespeople, but that’s a lot different than taking a full project management approach. Building for developers requires you to be on top of everything, from hiring external contractors to seeking necessary approvals.

  2. Builders who are financially sound

    Almost every week, you hear another story about building companies going broke, leaving their clients stranded with unfinished projects. Imagine you are a property developer building multiple homes in a new subdivision, and all of a sudden, your builder pulls the pin because they’re insolvent. It’s an absolute nightmare, so it pays to look for builders who are financially secure.

  3. Fully insured Brisbane builders

    Your chosen builder should hold all the appropriate insurance to protect your investment. This insurance should include public liability, materials theft, and, ideally, insurance against insolvency. There aren’t many industries where you need to check if someone is insured, but this check is a must when it comes to building for property developers.

  1. Reliability and track record

    You wouldn’t hire an electrician or interior designer with no proven record of success. Nor should you hire a builder for property development unless they’ve definitely got the runs on the board. Ask for testimonials from previous clients, especially property development clients. Ask to see evidence of their work and their capability of handling large projects. Reliability goes a long way when developing property.

Reliable and High-Quality Brisbane Builder

If you’re a property developer looking for a reliable partner builder, Groove Properties is here to help. Nick from Groove is a third-generation builder and is also a developer himself. Having completed numerous successful projects for himself and on behalf of other property developers, he understands the property development landscape. Working in Coorparoo, Bulimba, Hawthorne and all surrounding regions, we always deliver exceptional results.

With expertise in adding value, sourcing high-quality yet cost-effective materials, as well as the project management skills to ensure timely completion, your development is in safe hands. Before planning your next development project, speak to the team at Groove Properties for a reliable, honest and high-quality builder for developers.

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