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6 Things to Consider When Choosing a Builder

Building a new home can be an exciting experience.  It is also very likely to be one of the largest investments you will ever make.  Therefore, choosing the right builder is a critical decision.  When you build a new home, you are not only buying a product (your home), you are also choosing a trusted partner with whom to consult during the build process.  Your builder will be helping you make key decisions on what will go into your home, from features and amenities to design and color choices.  The builder you choose will also be your lead interface on warranty and repair issues once you have taken ownership of your home.  Doing a little research and answering the questions below before selecting your builder can go a long way toward ensuring you choose the right builder for you and your family.

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In what kind of homes does this builder specialize?

Are you interested in modern style architecture or more traditional?  Some builders focus on specific styles.  Others build a range of styles.  At Aho Construction, we specialize in modern craftsman style homes.  While we use the latest building materials and modern construction techniques, the American craftsman style is a timeless design and guarantees your investment will maintain its value even as modern styles and tastes come and go.

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How long has the builder been in business?

Knowing that your builder has been around for a while can provide you peace of mind that the builder will continue to be there well after your home is complete.   Check the builder’s web site.  Research them through industry trade publications.  At Aho Construction, we have been doing business in the state of Washington for over 30 years.  While many builders went out of business during the Great Recession, we survived and thrived by remaining focused on our craftsmanship and delivering value to our customers.

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What is the builder’s reputation?

What do their customers say about them?  Online reviews such as Google and Yelp can be all over the map, but they are always a good place to start.  As you narrow down your builder choices, ask the sales associate if you can speak to one of their past customers.  Any reputable builder should be more than happy to accommodate your request.  Ask these past customers about their experiences with the builder.  Was the project completed on schedule?  Was the builder responsive to their needs?  At Aho Construction, we are more than willing to connect you with one or several of our previous buyers.  We are proud to say that many of our homes are sold through word of mouth, which is a testament to our focus on customer satisfaction.

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Do they stand behind their work?

Ask the builder what kind of warranties they provide.  At Aho Construction, our philosophy is that we do things right the first time around, and we have a team of subcontractors who feel the same way.  Should a problem arise with your new home, we stand ready to make things right.  One of the most important advantages of owning an Aho Construction home is our Limited One-Year Warranty that covers all material defects and workmanship, in addition to the manufacturer’s warranties on individual products. We also provide a 2-10 Home Buyers Warranty.  This provides two terms of coverage: the “2” represents two years of coverage for major systems, and the “10” represents 10 years of coverage for all structural defects.

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Do they build energy-efficient homes?

Over the past 10 to 15 years, there have been huge advances made in energy efficiency within the building industry.  Not only are these advances good for the environment, but they also save homeowners thousands of dollars in lower energy costs over the life of the home.  From furnaces designed to reduce heat loss to plumbing and water heaters rated high efficiency, Aho Construction designs and builds each and every home with energy efficiency in mind. The windows we install feature low-E (emittance) coatings that help keep your home warmer in winter and cooler in summer.  You can also rest assured that the appliances, lighting, and insulation that goes into your home have all met or exceeded strict energy efficiency standards.

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How does the builder sell their homes?

Some builders sell through real estate agents—others sell-through sales associates.  Real estate agents are paid on commission. While some buyers find it reassuring to have someone representing them as part of the transaction, real estate agents typically do not add a great deal of value to the new home buying experience for most homebuyers.  Real estate agent commissions also add to the overall cost of the home.  At Aho Construction, we sell exclusively through a team of sales associates who are not paid on commission. They are your main contact and guide through the entire build process.  Their main focus is to ensure that we build you a home that best suits you and your family’s needs and meets your budget.

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