When it comes to building and renovation work, lack of trust between homeowner and builder can be a massive hurdle to overcome.
For many people, it is the first and hardest part of a project. After all, for any project – large or small – you are putting a large piece of yourself on the line, not to mention a very large sum of money.
For most people, the angst and mistrust surrounds one critical issue.
“What if I don’t like what the builder does?”
The unknown can make this question seem huge and scary. When, in reality, there are a series of methodical steps that you can follow to come to a resolution without creating world war 3.
Of course, no situation is the same, but the following steps are a great way to ensure that you get the home of your dreams without having to fight tooth and nail.
Give Clear Details
This is a step that comes well before construction begins. But ensuring you and your builder know exactly what you want can be a great way to prevent issues from ever arising. When your builder knows – in no uncertain terms – what you want, down the bathroom fixtures, then the builder can provide you with an accurate quote, timeframe, and idea of the overall aesthetic.
Build Your House On Paper First
This follows closely from the initial point. However, building your how in print is a great way to make sure that nothing is left to memory or chance. Of course, this does not protect against unforeseeable delays – such as a product being unavailable or out of production, but it helps. This is also a great way to create a realistic budget for your builder.
Tell Your Builder In Writing
If, after steps 1 & 2, your builder has still done something you don’t like; Tell them in writing what you have a problem with. Definitely mention your concerns in person or over the phone, but follow up with a well worded and clear and concise email. Keeping emotions out of this email is important. You should offer an explanation of how you would like the issue fixed, don’t just throw out fifty problems and expect the builder to understand immediately how you want something replaced – this just leads to more misunderstanding and problems. After this, you should allow your builders two weeks (or another predetermined amount of time) to resolve the issue in a way that is mutually acceptable. For most builders, if it is a fault on their part, they will do their best to rectify the situation promptly.
Contact The QBCC
When trying to resolve issues amicably does not work, it is best to contact a governing body, such as the QBCC. The QBCC can assist you with issues relating to:
- effective work complaints
- complaints against certifiers
- building design complaints
- non-completion of work
- complaints about pre-purchase and termite inspections
- unlicensed contractor complaints.
If you have reached an impasse with your builder, it is best to let a third party intervene, so ensure that no distemper arises.
Finally, if you are unhappy with the QBCC’s ruling on your complaint, you are entitled to apply for a hearing through QCAT. However, a hearing will only be scheduled should the matter pertain to the following:
- the construction of a house or building
- renovations, alterations, extensions, improvements or repairs to a house or building
- a house’s or building’s services (e.g. electrical work, water supply, sewerage or drainage)
- the demolition, removal or location of a house or building
- building work done on the land of your private property (e.g. putting in a swimming pool, landscaping, or building a retaining wall, driveway or structure)
- creating plans for work on a house or building
- the inspection of a finished house or building.
At the end of the day, these steps 4 & 5 only pertain to difficult or extreme cases. For a majority of reputable builders out there, steps 1, 2, & 3 are enough to help you find a resolution with your builder.
Above all else though, you can start off on the best foot possible, by picking the right builder. Look at their past work, read reviews, ask questions. A reputable builder will be happy to answer these questions.
At ACM Constructions we pride ourselves on the satisfaction of our customers. Our blog articles are an example of the time and care we take when helping clients build their dream.
If you would like to hear more about our past projects, our processes, or would like a quote, then contact our friendly team today!