Top Questions to ask a Builder

So, you’re considering a new home construction, renovation or addition and you’d like to know where to start when interviewing a prospective builder? ¬†This summer, we will be blogging about the top questions you should ask a Builder and top questions you should ask an Architect and our reasons why they are important to know the answers to:


  1. How many years have you been in business? Determining how knowledgeable the builder is, how many different types and styles of homes has the firm built, how many references they should have at this point (from architects, designers and clients) and if it is possible to tour some of their recent projects can really help you decide if you have a potentially good fit with this builder.
  2. Do you work with architects or are you a design/build firm? Know up front if you are allowed to use the architect of your choosing (or if the builder can recommend a few to you based on your project description) or if you are interviewing a design/build firm that would do both the design and the building.
  3. What contract form do you use? Many builders and architects use standardized AIA  (American Institute of Architects) contracts but some builders use their own, in-house contract forms which should thoroughly be reviewed by you and your attorney.
  4. How are alterations to the contract (otherwise known as “change orders”) handled? Be careful that your builder does not do the work before you agree to the price and timeline of the proposed and be sure that you have signed copies of change orders and they are not just kept track of by the builder or by the home owner. Keeping written, consented change orders on file protects both the client and the builder.
  5. What is the down payment required? We caution you against builders that require more very large deposits based on the size of your project. One of the advantages of using an architect and a builder (not one in the same) is that you have a checks and balances system in place to protect you from potential budgetary problems later.

Coming next time….Top Questions to ask an Architect!

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Posted July 10, 2011 in Tiefenthaler Blog  >> Comment Now

Welcome to Teifenthaler Builder’s Blog

Welcome to the new Teifenthaler Builders’ blog! It is our hope that we will be able to help people in Fairfield County that are considering a new home construction, a home renovation or a home addition project to navigate the planning and building cycle with ease. We have 25 years of fine home building experience in Fairfield County, CT and have some great tips on how to make your building project a success!

Topics we plan ro cover include:

Top 10 questions to ask when interviewing an Architect

Top 10 questions to ask when interviewing a Builder

Top 10 mistakes people make in the home buildling/renovation process

What is retainage and how does it work?

Great Fairfield County home designs we love!

Local Fairfield County Architect interviews

We hope that you will share your input on what we cover in this blog as well as suggest topics that you would like to see covered. We look forward to your feedback!

Cate & Ross Tiefenthaler

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