Whether you are new to the world of construction or you are already an expert, it is still an uphill climb. There is no part of the process that could be overlooked and dealt with ease.

After the many scrutinies and hiring a builder, you might think that now you can sit back and let the builder take care of this. However, if you still don’t check up on every single detail yourself, there are still chances that you might lose money.

Whether you’re looking at finding the best renovation builder Brisbane has to offer, or a more complex engagement for a knock down rebuild Brisbane company to do the job, it’s highly unlikely that the builders quote given to you will cover all costs you may incur. Even the best granny flat builders Brisbane has available will miss out on some of these crucial items in their building quotes!

It is definitely not the case with every builder out there, yet it is your responsibility to make sure that you don’t overlook things. An integral part is to ensure that you verify the builders quotes yourself.

Keep the following things in mind when you receive the quote, so you are well prepared.

1. Fees for approvals and permits

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Approvals fees are paid to the local council of the department of housing in your area. Examples of such approvals include Building Approval Fees (BA), development Approval Fees(DA) and many more. These types of fees and the amount also depends on the locality you live in.

Now, the first decision to be made is to decide whether you or the builder is taking care of the permits. If you are the one doing it, you need to contact the local council to inquire about the amount.

Since it involves a lot of time and energy, usually this part of the job is taken care of by the builders itself. Moreover, they also would have contacts in the offices that will be useful for the approval. In such cases, the builders also tend to charge a small commission to get the approvals.

As the client, your job is to see how the approval fees are included in the quote. It would also be better to double check on whether the approvals tend to your particular construction and whether the fees are included as a cost item, provisional sum or an allowance.

2. Preparing the site

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Before any construction, the site has to be prepared as per the requirements. It depends on the type of soil, the topography and the construction type. If you need to demolish an existing building or clear the site of any vegetation, that is also included in this.

This particular item varies from site to site, and there is no standard rate that you can refer to. Not all builders include this in the quote. Site preparation costs are calculated separately or as an allowance. Few builders don’t even add this unless specifically requested.

Nonetheless, preparing the site is one of the crucial parts of construction and how it is done and the charges is something that should be agreed upon prior to signing the contract.

3. Temporary Construction

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On the same note, during the time of construction, the builder might need to set up a temporary shelter for the workers and a site toilet. These things usually are not mentioned in the drawings as it is a common understanding that they are required. Remember to check up on these as a cost item in the quote.

4. Structural Costs

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Structural costs could alter depending on which stage things are done. If the drawings don’t involve engineering design, then the prices could dramatically vary once the engineering designs come in. The changes usually happen in the footing design, floor slabs and other structural parts.

Ensure that these quotes are made at the right time after considering all the factors.

5. Electrical costs and insulation

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Usually, a builders quote might cover the electrical wiring if its a new building. In case you are renovating an old building, it is imminent to check whether the cables are up to the new standards. The extra costs come where there is a relocation of the electrical point of attachments. You also need to discuss with the building designers whether they charge the standard electrical fixtures.

Insulation is another factor that most people tend to forget. Architects carefully design insulation to meet the climatic and personal requirements of the client. What you need to check is whether the builder has quoted for the exact same quality as mentioned by the architect or whether they have altered the specifications.

6. Doors, windows and flyscreens

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Something as small a door handle could change the final quote. Builders usually exclude such things like door handles, latches, locks etc. A different team might do the joinery itself, but when it comes to such things people usually overlook, you will need to state them in the quote explicitly.

Flyscreens for windows is another element that quotes miss out. That is also because not everyone requires a flyscreen. If you expect to install them even sometime in future, you need to mention it as all types of UPVC windows do not have provisions to incorporate flyscreens. This will also make a difference in the costing.

7. Bathroom Fixtures

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Simple things like bathroom mirrors, toilet paper holders, towel racks and such are often left out of the costing. These also come in endless varieties with prices ranging from cheap to luxury. If you are including this in your request for a quote, you need to specify which brand and model you are looking for. It is even best to buy the products yourself so you can choose the ones apt to your taste.

8. Fences

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If you are building a house from scratch, then boundary walls are a priority. Just like the other elements mentioned above, when it comes down to comparing, you need to state the situation of fencing explicitly. Because at times, you are sharing the fences with your neighbour and you need to come to an understanding before you decide to add it in the quote.

9. Completion of the project

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When you sign the contract, it is in your best interest that the estimated date of completion is mentioned. Many builders also have multiple projects going on at the same time. So you will also have to see their availability and that it overlaps with your optimal schedules.  

10. Deductions and exclusions

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All in all, it might be a little easier for you to ask the builder what all they have excluded and how much deductions have occurred. This will get you a much better picture and makes it simpler for you to compare multiple quotes while making the choices.

Many surprises that come along the way could be avoided if you have taken precautions. Finalising the design and quote are the first steps to it. Once you have taken care of all factors, you will not have to panic on how to deal with unforeseen situations.

TrustCo helps you find the right designer who can step into your shoes and give life to your vision just the way you want it and within the allocated budget.

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