Firstly, a custom builder will only build a limited amount of homes per year and may have a nucleus of only a few permanent staff running the business. Most consumers can easily name their local builder with ease. Project builders, however, are a different story, because they may operate in different areas under different names. They build a larger volume of homes each year, usually between 100 - 500+ per year, as an estimated range.
Many of these builders often run under multiple names depending on the spec of the home, for example, 'Metricon' also owns the brand 'Metinvest' which caters to the investor market via its third party distribution channels nationally. In SE QLD, 'Plantation Homes' caters to owner occupiers with medium to high spec builds, and 'Kalka' caters to high specs only, while also operating under 'DC Living' for it's project builder operation. And to confuse everyone further, the breakdown of builders can be expanded by way of:
Our advice ... don't waste valuable time trying to assess builders, and then ultimately ending up with the wrong builder anyway. BUILD NEW HOMES makes it easier for you to avoid a house being built that is over time, over budget and over stressed!. For now, let's break down below the pros and cons of engaging these two main types of builders - project builders versus a custom builders.
Project builders or volume builders are normally a much larger operation compared to others. They may build in different regions or cities as part of their national operation. They will have systemised their entire sales & marketing + construction process. One thing to keep in mind is that everything is finalised before a client starts, as they would have prepared a full turn key package prior to marketing. This is easy as they would have sited the block of dirt prior to registration or reviewed the disclosure plan, and based on their standard designs and prices, they would have 'plonked' the design onto the blocks in the estate, to show buyers exactly what they are getting. This is part of the efficiency that normally comes with a larger operation. It's perfect for buyers who want to know what they are getting, and can appreciate that the builder does many builds quickly and efficiently, which is very easy to read the online reviews and talking to others who know about the builder's reputation.
Custom builders are generally hands-on local tradesmen who pride themselves on the personal quality and uniqueness that they can bring to a buyer's home building experience. When using a custom builder, the person who sells their services is usually the same person who is building the home for the buyer. They will be the point of contact from start to end, and definitely suit the buyer who wants to be fully immersed into the whole building process. One of the biggest benefits is the ability for a client to interact and make changes throughout the build process and this kind of minor variations details is normally embraced by such custom builders. This also allows the buyer to control the outcome and budget to a certain extent.
There are many advantages and disadvantages to engaging either a project builder or a custom builder and the client's decision should be made after much thought and research depending on their circumstances. If the buyer's needs are based on continuous variations, 'or' have no budget issues, 'or' are not price driven, 'or' have no timeline of completion, one might argue that a custom builder is just fine. On the other hand, if a buyer wanted the builder's price to be sharp, 'or' construction time had to be quick, 'or' wanted no headaches and be stress free, 'or' be given access to land that is not available to the public, one would understand why a project builder is engaged. At the end of the day, all affiliate partners we work with will have full discretion to recommend what 'house & land package' is given to clients. Our preference is to always try to suggest working with builders who offer the best of both worlds, which have "prices almost as low as project builders" + "flexibility or quality almost as good as custom builders".
On side note, BUILD NEW HOMES has a big warning to all you newbies to watch out for real estate groups or marketers that promote building companies with a licensed nominee builder. This is a scenario where the director of the 'so called' building company engages a licensed builder (an individual with a building licence) to be the face of the company who is, in theory, "the builder" of this organisation. The truth is, this "builder" doesn't own the "building company", as he is just nominated as "the licensee" (aka the hired gun). In layman's terms, he is the fall guy, and we all know what happens to the 'fall guy' and 'the other guy' don't we? The fall guy "goes down when shit hits the fan" and the other guy "gets away" without a scratch.*
* Disclaimer … not all nominee licensed builders are bad guys :)