Tuesday, I had the opportunity to meet with Mark Botsko, the President of Botsko Builders to discuss custom homes today and what a buyer should know before choosing a custom home builder. Mark has been in the building industry for over 20 years and is an expert on the subject. Botsko Builders are founding members of CBUSA of Middle TN and are one of the most respected custom home builders in Tennessee. They have built extensively throughout Fairvue Plantation and are one of the exclusive builders along with Ernst Homes in The Reserve and Jacob’s Landing.
Here’s are some valuable tips Mark shared with me on what every home buyer should know BEFORE choosing a custom home builder.
Tips for choosing a Custom Home Builder
- Ask for references– What do home-owners, bankers and contractors say about the builder? Ask builders on your list for the addresses of their recently built homes and subdivisions. Ask them to provide names of some home owners who would be willing to talk with you. Talk to home-owners and get their opinions of the builder. Find out if they are pleased with their homes. Did the builder do what was promised in a timely manner? Did the builder listen to their requests? Find out if there have been any problems with the home and if so, how quickly and effectively the problems were repaired. Would they build another home using this custom home builder? Ask for a list of who they buy from, where they borrow from, and who they subcontract with, along with phone numbers and contact names. Contact their subs and find out if they have a good working relationship with the builder, if they have always been paid on time, if they would use the builder for their own home and how long they have worked with the builder.
- Tour a model home – Look at the quality of the construction. Inspect the quality of the cabinetry, carpeting, hardwood and stone work, trim-work, moldings, and paint and other finishes. Ask the builder or the builder’s representative a lot of questions. Make sure that you know the builder’s standards. It’s important that you understand what you’ll be getting for the money you spend.
- Talk to your builder– Discuss your expectations, visions, and objectives to determine if this builder is the right fit for your needs and to achieve your goals. Can you trust the builder? “We make it a priority to communicate honestly and to always be transparent with our clients. We are an open book. There’s nothing we won’t share including our profit margins. I believe this level of transparency has served us well. Our client’s trust us. The industry isn’t known for this.”~Mark Botsko
- Do your homework– Certainly you should comparison shop between custom builders, however you should never make a decision solely based on price. Mark states, the most commonly asked question is, “What’s your price per square foot?” When comparing custom home-builders pricing be sure that you are comparing apples to apples. “How much for a bag of groceries? Well, that depends on what’s in the bag, now doesn’t it?” How do the quality and type of building materials compare? Are the homes built with prefabricated trusses or on site? What is the thickness of lumber used in the framing? Are the finishes and options of the same quality?
“My favorite thing about custom home building is the process. Starting out with nothing but an idea, a dream and seeing that dream become reality.”~Mark Botsko. To aid clients in arriving at a vision for their dream that is understood before it’s constructed, Botsko Builders Inc. utilize a state of the art Computer Aided Design (CAD) system to produce two and three dimensional renderings of homes. They are a true custom home builder. In fact, they have never built the same home more than once.
For more helpful information to assist you in choosing a custom home builder, Botsko Builders have published a book. We invite you to stop by and tour their lovely model home at Gracie Lake- Fairview Plantation. You will not be disappointed!
~Beautiful Home Ideas