Most mass building companies contract each individual part of the building process, and while the actual construction of your home will be left up to the builders, you can opt out of having certain things installed and instead leave the work for you and a handyman to complete. Things such as flooring, lighting, painting, and landscaping make a huge difference in the all around feel of the home, and often the builder’s standard fixtures are the cheapest and most generic.
If you are in love with a certain floor plan, but your budget is a little shy of making your dream come true, consider post construction installation for some of the easier do-it-yourself tasks. You and your handyperson can both profit from this idea. For example, the light fixtures in a home can make or break the home’s ambiance. Rather than agreeing to the standard fixtures that come with your agreed upon price, ask the builder to do the electrical work for the home, but to leave the fixtures up to you. This will result in a credit, which is a set amount that should be deducted from the selling price of your home. You can then bargain shop for more desirable light fixtures, purchase them, and enlist a handyman to help you with the installation.
Another area of the home where builders and contractors stand to profit is in the flooring department. The standard carpets and tiles that are included in a building price are often poorer quality than what you really want in a brand new house. If you opt out of having these things installed, the builder must at least credit you the cost of the materials that are not used. This will not only take off from the price of your final mortgage, but it will free up some cash for you to search for better quality carpet and padding or more trendy styles than those that can be found in your builder’s design warehouse. The same theory can be applied to painting and landscaping.
Before you start eliminating things from your contract, do your research, and ask your handyman to help. Ask him to attend the design session with you, and go ahead and go through all of your options for upgrades and extras. In doing so, you will find out how much that coveted carpet will cost if you allow the builder to contract and install it, and your handyman can instantly compare that price to the price for which he would complete the same job. Do not succumb to the pressure to make design decisions on the spot. Instead, ask for a week or so to think about your options. The handyman post installation theory is certain to help you create your dream home without a nightmare for a price tag.