Buying any home is a huge event. Deciding to purchase a newly built home or an off-plan home brings about a different set of inquiries to be made. While your home will be brand new, there could still be matters that need to be addressed. It’s important to ask the right questions before and during the process of buying your new home construction project. 

 

When looking to buy a newly built home in Chiang Mai, you’ll want to ask some essential questions. This list will provide you with 10 pertinent questions, plus a bonus listing of questions, to ask your builder before any decisions are made or contracts are signed.

1. How long will it take to build the house?

 

If you are buying off-plan, It’s important to know when you can expect the project to be complete. You may need to know when to sell your current home or when to end a rental contract. It’s also possible that you are purchasing in a new city and need to know the approximate moving date to make all arrangements. 

The builder should be aware of how long it will take to arrange permits and should be able to provide an approximate schedule of completion. Building processes are often prone to delays, in Chiang Mai, this could potentially be due to weather such as the rainy season, however, the builder will know the window of completion. As the project grows nearer to being finished, they will be able to give you a more concrete date.

2.What’s included in the price?

 

Each builder of a new build home provides their own distinct standards. It’s important that you know exactly what features and appliances your new home has included in the price. There is typically a base price and upgrades. Make sure to understand which materials, accessories, and appliances are clearly listed as standard so you can plan financially for any upgrades.

All 999 Development homes come with these standard features:

  • Double brick walls
  • Fully insulated roof
  • Fully fitted kitchen
  • Landscaped garden
  • High quality electric and plumbing system
  • Landscaped garden with fully automated sprinkler system
  • High quality tamper proof doors and locks
  • Hot water to all taps
  • Fully fitted bathrooms
  • … and many more

3.Can you make changes or revisions to the house plans, materials, or appliances once construction has started?

 

Usually, before construction begins, a floor plan, upgrades and materials are all agreed upon by the buyer and the builder. Of course, you may later change your mind and want to make alterations. The fact is, not all changes may be possible. 

A good builder will be flexible to a point, but the changes that are possible may really start to add up as extra costs and provide headaches. Changes may also extend your expected completion date. To avoid any hassles, be as upfront as possible and ask the builder before purchasing what changes you can or cannot make once construction has begun.

4.Are you allowed to purchase your own materials or appliances and will you receive a credit for doing so?

 

Some builders will allow you to source and provide your own materials. For instance, if you really have your heart set on certain flooring or brand name appliances you may arrange to source these yourself. In this case, the builder could install these for you. It’s also possible the builder won’t let you purchase your own materials as they have contracts with suppliers. It doesn’t hurt to ask and you may be able to arrange a credit towards your home purchase.

5.How long have you (the builder) been constructing homes and how many have you built and sold?

You’ll definitely want to check the builder’s reputation. If possible, ask to speak with past customers, or even better, see if you can tour at least one home built by the same builder. You’ll be able to see the quality and hear directly from home buyers with real experience in a home constructed by your builder.

It’s also important to go with a home builder who has been around for a number of years and has built various styles of homes as well. Choosing a builder such as 999 Developments that is open to communications with and has strong relationships with previous buyers is essential.

6.Does the builder offer a builder’s warranty?

You may be surprised to learn that homes come with warranties! Just like your new state-of-the-art washing machine that comes with a 5 year warranty, inquire to see if your new home has a warranty as well.

 

Check to see if the warranty is all-encompassing for the home, or whether there are different warranties for different aspects of the home.

 

With a 999 Developments’ home build, we offer a  2 year warranty directly from the developer on all our houses, including construction, electricity work, plumbing, roof, doors windows, and swimming pools. But in most cases, all those materials and parts have a longer warranty from the builder or supplier. So you can really be sure everything is covered for a long while.

6.Does the builder offer a builder’s warranty?

You may be surprised to learn that homes come with warranties! Just like your new state-of-the-art washing machine that comes with a 5 year warranty, inquire to see if your new home has a warranty as well.

 

Check to see if the warranty is all-encompassing for the home, or whether there are different warranties for different aspects of the home.

7.How much will the new build home really cost me?

A good builder will be able to provide you with a standard range of where the final costs will fall. You will have to factor in any upgrades or changes made throughout the build and find out extra costs such as landscaping, lot costs, unexpected fixes or revisions to the home.

8.Can you back out of the contract?

Some unforeseen events may occur in your life or with the build and you may need to retract your contract. You’ll want to ask whether it’s possible to back out of the contract and what any penalties are before signing anything and determine contractual financial responsibilities towards the build. Contract terminations may be added as a clause and have dates attached to them, such as past 80% completion rate the builder may not allow you to back out of your house contract.

9.Does the home get a final home inspection upon completion?

A home inspection is beneficial for both you and the builder. It can help confirm that any previous fixes (if any) have been fixed and for the builder, it can reveal any things to account for in future builds.

10.What is your role in the transaction?

Your role should be communicated clearly early on in the home construction process. You’ll want a good relationship with your builder and you’ll both need to rely on each other during the home build. The key to a successful build with the least amount of headaches is great communication. Set up communication channels and clear guidelines on communication deadlines and timelines.

Other questions to ask when purchasing a new build construction home:

  • Do you offer financing?
  • What’s the payment schedule? 
  • What’s the downpayment and is it refundable?
  • What are the closing costs?
  • Who do I communicate with during construction?
  • Who will oversee the project?
  • Am I allowed to tour the home during construction?
  • Are you insured as a builder?
  • Can I see a model home or 3D rendering of my home?
  • What exactly is not included in the price?
  • Will my home have energy saving features or smart designs?
  • Can I speak with someone that you’ve built a home for?

We hope these questions make you feel more in control and confident in your decision to buy a newly built home.

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