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Old 05-10-2010, 09:58 AM
 
Location: Parker Colorado
49 posts, read 97,409 times
Reputation: 16

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Hi All,
We are currently under contract for 5 acres in Plum, and are looking to build our own home. We first looked at modulars, but overall they were more expensive when you add excavation, and the whole nine yards. I then started reviewing and searching builders, I will only use on that is affiliated with the BBB since I am not from this area. Has anyone used Shumacher or Wayne homes and what was your experience?
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Old 05-10-2010, 08:14 PM
 
2,538 posts, read 1,971,705 times
Reputation: 3217
I can't comment on Wayne Homes quality, but take their price quotes with a grain of salt. I was going to build with them in 2004. Price quoted at the initial contract was $181k, but once we actually started to do the final numbers a few weeks before construction the price rose to over $200k. The problem is Wayne's prices are based purely on the lowest possible building cost. If you need any additional changes they'll nickel and dime you to death. My lot wasn't perfectly flat, so it was going to cost me an extra $8K just to make the one corner of the foundation deeper. Ok, this might not be their fault, but they do not tell you this up front that this is a possibility. One thing that did p*ss me off was they leave out stuff that is required by PA code. Again, when going over the final numbers the GC assigned to me mentions a $1200 charge to tie in the basement floor drain in to the main sewage system. He says 'this is required by code in PA'. Well, if it is required by code in PA and your price list is specifically for the Pittsburgh market then include it in the damn price. Don't add something later that is mandatory. I canceled the contract at this point because the house wouldn't have been worth what it was initially appraised at by their own lender. I'm glad I walked away. From what I found building a home on your own is not economically viable. Unless you get the lot for free or you absolutely love the property(or money is no object) it is cheaper just to buy an existing house or buy in a plan.
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Old 05-11-2010, 06:53 AM
 
367 posts, read 566,104 times
Reputation: 155
I would search for a smaller,custom builder. They will build you a home of any size from any plan. You will get a FAR better product than most, if not all, of the "type" builders mentioned. You will be better able to control costs as well.

I know folks who paid 500K for a Heartland Home and it's junk. They are "Heart-Broken" about what they got for the money. A 500k home from a "good, honest" custom builder would be a great home.

Do some research and ask around, there are some terrific custom builders just looking for a new project.
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Old 05-13-2010, 08:45 AM
 
Location: Parker Colorado
49 posts, read 97,409 times
Reputation: 16
Smaller builder? I have concerns about a smaller builder because I know of one whom stole so much money from not only the sub's but also the client. He is in prison now for five years but his wife whom was also apart of the scam is out "free n clear" and many think she was the mind behind the millions of dollars stolen. After knowing these "gem" of people I am concerned with a smaller builder.
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Old 05-13-2010, 09:29 AM
 
367 posts, read 566,104 times
Reputation: 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by sbrobbie View Post
Smaller builder? I have concerns about a smaller builder because I know of one whom stole so much money from not only the sub's but also the client. He is in prison now for five years but his wife whom was also apart of the scam is out "free n clear" and many think she was the mind behind the millions of dollars stolen. After knowing these "gem" of people I am concerned with a smaller builder.
Smaller............not CROOKED. There are many smaller, custom builders who are legit and have been in business for MANY years. That is why I mentioned doing some research on ANY builder. You are not being fair to yourself or a smaller/custom builder by stereotyping them because of this crook. I assure you there are many BIG builders who paint a rosy picture to get you to sign on the dotted line and then give you a sub-par product. Research, ask to talk to prior clients, do your homework and you will prove to yourself that not all small builders are shady.
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Old 05-13-2010, 12:13 PM
 
Location: Oakland CA
7,604 posts, read 10,628,219 times
Reputation: 8348
If you are going to finance your home via a construction loan, ask the bank for a list of builders. Banks won't deal with a crummy builder, because the bank doesn't cut a check for the whole amount and hand it to the builder -- they dole it out in bits as the project is done and inspected. They won't deal with an idiot company that wastes money and time....

or steals.

A smaller bank that does lots of construction loans will know whos building quality....
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Old 11-23-2014, 02:42 PM
 
3 posts, read 469 times
Reputation: 12
After reading all the post, my hubby and I decided to buy an existing house with our own inspector. We have the perfect house plan for but we are terrified now of ever finding and honest builder. Plus we can't afford to be taken, period. We figure that our savings will go to adding on/or reconstructing it our way. Besides who wants to wait for trees and grass to grow when an existing house for sale already has it's growth and beauty.
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Old 11-23-2014, 06:51 PM
 
438 posts, read 167,320 times
Reputation: 179
One of the things you need to do with any project is do your design and selections first, then have your contractor build to your specs. If you have a job quoted without having your selections made you will not get an accurate price.

Some contractors will bid a job with no upgrades and others will bid a job with some upgrades and some bid using allowences. You will get three wildly diffrent bids when the most expensive price may be the cheepest in the long run.

Without having your selection cost ahead of time, it is hard to compare labor and management costs from one company to the other.
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