Hiring builders, base prices and knowing the local asphalt paving contractors… there’s a lot that can go wrong for the unwary first timer when it comes to planning their home build!

These tips relate to the novice home builder who is thinking of hiring a builder and using their plans.


When you have visited the show home belonging to the builder, you can come away with the impression that everything you see in there comes as standard.

It does not. Question everything about the model home that you have viewed carefully.

More than likely, a lot of what you see there will actually be an upgrade.

It pays to find out how much is included and what is not. And then to find out the price of those things that are not included.

You don’t want a nasty (and expensive) surprise!

For example, the kitchen might be anything up to $10K more than the price you have been quoted.

Other things that might turn out to be pricy add-ons include elements such as the lighting, the doorknobs, the paintwork, the carpet and flooring and so on.

Home plans which are advertised as ‘budget’ have an unfortunate tendency to end up becoming anything but, when all the extras have been accounted for.

Sometimes, it is actually better to get a more comprehensive option and pay more upfront.

Make sure you find out what is included and what isn’t, before you sign anything!


When you are new to the process, it can be hard to realize what you are being quoted and what this includes.

Quite often, the price that your sales agent tells you about is actually only the start. If you have to do a lot of upgrades to it (see our first point) then the end price can be considerably more.

Make sure you do these sums before putting any deposit down.


This is something that happens all too often, in the world of home building.

Once again, if you have visited a model home, undoubtedly you saw a beautifully landscaped front walkway, probably complete with a newly laid asphalt driveway.

It is important to realize that this is unlikely to be included in the price – or the deal – unless it has been explicitly stated.

More than likely, anything which is to the exterior of the property will be an extra at best, or something which you will have to do.

Don’t overlook the importance of the front walkway when estimating the costs for your project.

It pays to have researched all the asphalt paving companies within locality before you decide on anything.

Even if you are doing bits of your build yourself, it is unlikely that you are going to want to lay asphalt like a pro!


Never allow yourself to be seduced by a dream show home and blindly sign up with a builder without thoroughly doing your homework on them.

It is imperative to check out the person or company who will be responsible for fulfilling your project.

Find out what their previous clients think of them. It would be a mistake to let your enthusiasm lead to costly heartbreak later down the line.


Finally, the most important piece of advice we can give about undertaking any home build project is not to be in a hurry.

You need to be in this for the long haul. You should be prepared for the fact that things will go wrong and not everything will run as smoothly as you would wish.

Take your time and do things properly. This means researching and costing everything in full before taking any decisions.

Try and put your head in charge of your heart and remember that cutting corners now could come back to haunt you and your family for years to come.