Granny flats have become very popular over the last few years. Some of the reasons why you might need one include hosting a senior family member, getting a home office, serve as an art studio, create a teenage retreat or even get that home extension that you have always been dreaming of. A flat must have separate facilities for living, sleeping, cooking, toilet, and bathroom from the main house for it to qualify to be a granny flat. Constructing the ideal structure can be somehow expensive and overwhelming. How do you ensure that you get the right granny flat builders in Sydney, Australia? The following are some of the mistakes to avoid
Choosing a company that subcontracts
Did you know that some granny flat builders are an extension of a construction company? Some will even subcontract such tasks to other companies. There are instances where you will find that the company that provides the quote is not the one that builds your structure. You must ensure that you understand who you are engaging with and who will handle the task at hand.
Companies that are dedicated solely to granny flats are the best choice if you do not want frustrations. Such an approach ensures that you can hold the company accountable in case something goes wrong. Engaging a company that subcontracts raise the chances of having delays. Communication can also be a challenge when there are many parties involved in the project. Ensure that you get the contacts of the person who will do the physical work to gauge your options.
Settling on a company with limited designs
There are hundreds of granny flat designs that you can choose from if you want the final product to be unique. A builder that gives you a few designs limits your options and might force you to settle for something that does not suit your needs. There are also instances where you might want to convert your garage or existing granny to a flat. The ideal company should have many options that you can select from, as some only deal with the construction of new grannies.
Take your time and research on different designs depending on your taste, budget, resources at hand, and building codes in your area. The builder should customize the design to fit your needs and taste. The design that you select should complement the general look of your property, depending on the other structures that you already have.
Selecting a builder that disregards government regulations
There are different conditions and regulations when you want to construct a granny flat, depending on the state or country of residence. You may also find some that have been set up by local authorities. Such regulations are meant to ensure that the structures meet certain conditions. For instance, you must ensure that the flat has an environmental plan.
Familiarize yourself with regulations on areas such as the total area that the flat should cover and the number of units that you can have in one property. Your neighbors also have some rights that you should not violate, such as obstructing light.
Ensure that you gauge whether the builder understands various government regulations as authorities will most likely catch up with you when you disregard such regulations. It is undesirable to end up with an unfinished project or be forced to plan construction from scratch.
Opting to work with a poor communicator
There are different types of contracts that you can sign with a granny flat builder. For instance, you can decide to source for all the materials while the company provides only labor. On the other hand, some companies will handle everything from sourcing the materials to the actual construction work.
You need to be in constant communication with the contractor to ensure that the project runs smoothly.
Agree on the most appropriate modes of exchanging messages between different parties. There are some instances where you might involve third parties, such as interior designers. You must as well agree on who should contact such experts. The ideal company is one that communicates on time and does not wait until the last minute.
Selecting a builder who is not transparent
Does the company provide realistic timeframes? There are a lot of plans that come into play when dealing with such a project. Lack of finances is one of the reasons why many construction projects stall. You need to get estimates of the entire project and avoid hidden charges. Your budget should also account for miscellaneous expenses that may arise in the course of the engagement. Do not forget to check online reviews as it is the best place to learn what to expect from various companies.
The company should also highlight where it gets its supplies. Only work with those companies that source from reliable suppliers and those who have quality products. Failure to indicate the source of raw materials is a red flag. Most companies will list all their partners on their websites for potential clients to view.
Working with unqualified builders
There are various trade organizations and associations that admit and regulate professionals in the construction industry. Such associations and organizations differ from one country to the other. Take your time and learn what applies in your country before you settle for your builder. You can ask the potential companies if they are members of such organizations if you cannot find any information on their website.
Working with someone who is not insured
There are some must-have insurance policies for every company in the construction industry. Contract-work insurance is one of the most important policies that cover risks such as storms, vandalism, fire damage, theft, and water damage. There should also be a cover for the technicians who will work on your project. The general public and their products should also be insured from damages.
Avoiding the above mistakes makes it easy to select a granny flat builder that suits your needs. You must understand what is expected of you and the contractor when the project kicks off.