Why use a custom builder (like us) vs a volume builder (where you purchase a house package)?
When you engage a custom builder, you have far more flexibility and choice over the desired fitting throughout your home. Whereas, when you purchase from a volume builder your choices are limited to those offered by the builder only.
Volume builders maintain their lower costs, by purchasing fittings and fixtures that have broad appeal and can be purchased in bulk. The downside of this can be that these choices often lack the personality and appeal of self-selected features.
While a custom builder’s contracted price is often higher, it also means that the aesthetic appeal of your home is uniquely yours, reflected in the personal choices you have been able to make throughout the entire building process.
What is a Prime Cost Item?
A prime cost item in the contract refers to a fitting or fixture that you hadn’t yet chosen, or was unknown, at the time you sign the contract.
For example, when you sign the contract, you are unlikely to have chosen the oven for your kitchen. Therefore, we make a reasonable estimate that the oven (prime cost item) is likely to cost approximately $1500. When the time comes to select this item, the following will happen:
If oven price is less than the estimated amount of $1500
e.g. $1000 (-$500 difference) the cost will be adjusted to $1000.00
If the oven price is greater that the estimated amount of $1500
e.g. $2000 (+$500 difference) the cost will be adjusted to $1500 + ($500 + builders margin %)
What if the builder doesn’t meet the agreed timeline?
Some unforeseen circumstances may mean that we may need to extend the completion date. These are referred to as allowable extensions of time in accordance with the contract. Holds ups due to unfavourable weather, material delivery delays, or variations made to the work are some of the genuine reasons for extending the building time. Rest assured, if there are any hold-ups, we will keep you informed via your Co-Construct account, and you can call us anytime to discuss progress. Furthermore, in the very rare circumstance that we don’t meet the agreed timelines and there haven’t been any allowable extensions requested, you can seek to claim liquidated damages for every week that your build is late. These details are all contained within your signed contract should you need to refer to it.
What is a Provisional Sum in my Contract?
A Provisional Sum is an estimate of an amount within the contract sum that is used to cover materials and or work which cannot be explicitly detailed when entering a contract. Often, builders will include a relatively accurate PS for sitework costs. However, unforeseen circumstances can increase these costs. For example, upon initial inspection a builder may deem a site clear and only charge a minimal sitework amount, however, they may later discover tree roots underground that were not visible until works began, causing the client to incur additional costs.
How do I change a specified cost item?
After the contract has been signed and the build has started, it is common for owners to want to make a change to a specified item.
E.g. You decided to use Tasmania Oak floorboards instead of the specified Baltic Pine.
1. Fill in a Variation to Contract
2. We calculate the cost of this change and email you the quotation.
3. You reply to accept or decline the quotation.
4. The contract price stated on the next invoice is adjusted accordingly.
Can you as the builder change a specified cost item?
Yes, but we will let you know. From time to time, after the contract has been signed and the build has started, we may need to make a change to a specified item. When this happens, we will:
1. Email you a Variation to Contract
2. You can then reply to accept or decline the variation of contract and the quotation.
3. The contract price stated on the next invoice is adjusted accordingly.