What comes first? Chicken or Egg? Builder or Architect?

One common misconception people have before they make the decision to make some changes to their existing or build a new home, is that they should get some plans drawn up by an architect before they get a builder involved. This is how we used to think too.​
​​When Certified Home Extensions first started in 2003, our preference was very much to wait until the plans were ready, meaning we could get stuck into construction straight away and didn’t have the hassle of dealing with council, designers & fittings and fixture selection. However, after having several plans brought to us to price where the budget was tens and in some cases hundreds of thousands of dollars short of what the final fixed price would be, our preference changed very quickly.

The first meeting that you have with our designer is crucial as that is where they get the brief for what will be incorporated into your extension or new build. One, often two of our team will always be on-site for that meeting to make sure that all of the details are captured and the first concept is as accurate as possible!

While most architects are terrific, it is important to keep in mind that their speciality is drawings and coming up with what the best version of your home might look like. Very rarely do they consider or even know the costs of construction when they are making recommendations like extending your new ensuite to make it 5m2 bigger, adding a feature to the top of your roof or some other funky but impractical detail that looks pretty but does not improve the functionality of your home. If you don’t talk to a builder before getting some plans drawn up, the end result is very likely to be a significant amount of frustration, disappointment, a lot of wasted time and either an expensive redesign, or worse no project at all.

Getting our team involved before you talk to a designer means that we can make sure that your expectations are realistic and within your financial constraints. This guarantees that the dream home you are picturing can become a reality, as opposed to living forever on paper because it was a lot more expensive than what you were led to believe. It also avoids disappointment later down the track and means you stay on good terms with the bank, as they know you are working with an experienced company, who knows the ins and outs of the process at every stage. 

Trying to manage an extension or new build on your own even during the pre-construction stages is almost impossible with the busyness of everyday life thrown into the mix. Involving our team from the start means that we can look after your project for you, meaning all you have to worry about is choosing colours and answering the odd email – everything else will be taken care of!

Unlike a standard builder, Certified Home Extensions don’t just recommend a designer and then walk away and leave you to it until the plans are ready. We manage the design process for you every step of the way. This involves everything from dealing with council to organising all of the other third party personnel that are typically involved in the design process of an extension or renovations project i.e. structural, geotechnical, stormwater engineers etc. All of these tradespeople can speak a different language and it is easy to become overwhelmed when you have limited amounts of industry knowledge and/or practical building experience. We see our role in the process as acting as your translator – making sure that you always understand exactly what is going on with your home extension, renovation or custom new build and that you are receiving efficient and effective outcomes.

So if you are thinking about extending your home or perhaps building a new one,  give us a call on (09) 236 6944 or drop us an email at emily@certifiedhomeextensions.co.nz – we’d love to hear from you! ​

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