As soon as buyer signs the new builder contract, they are told by Sales rep to setup design center appointment quickly to select their options for their new home. The problem, Buyers are not really ready. They just went through a decision making process to finalize the builder and plans and now they have to go through another daunting process to select the options. But they don’t have choice as they have to complete the option selection before start of the home.
Usually builder provider 2-3 weeks time to complete the design center appointment which might seem lot of time but it is not. Buyers also should understand design center appointments are crucial for getting the dream home the way you wanted. I have compiled few tips which should help Buyers to get them prepared for the design center appointment and also guide them to be on budget.
1. First thing first, put a list of things which you really want and need separately to have in the house other than standard features provided by the builder. For example, Tile in family room. Is it a must now or you can upgrade later? Wood flooring, carpet upgrades, fireplace stones, power outlets etc., Also put a budget or number towards the total upgrades you want to add on top of builder incentives.
2. In order to make the above list, it would be beneficial to find out what builders standards look like. Most of builders allow you to go and check out the options provided either online or personally at the design center before appointment. Also you can ask for the model home in and around town for your same plan and try to visit to get an idea how they look in the plan. You can also ask for the option addendum for those houses and see any other options would be of your interest.
3. If you have an option to split the appointment hours, do it. Don’t use all the hours at one time. Make 2 appointments if possible which will help a lot. First appointment to go through the options provided both standard and upgrades and pricing and second appointment to finalize.
4. After you been to your first appointment, revise your list and take time to visit inventories and houses which are about to complete for your floor plan. Builder/Sales rep should help you in finding and giving you the address for them. Check out the upgrades you want and how it looks and make decision accordingly.
5. Don’t underestimate the need of smaller items which helps to keep your house clean and look organized. For example, prewiring for security sensors, prewiring for speakers, prewiring for TV wall mounts, getting gas hookup or water softener loops, power outlets in places like floor, walls etc., You can do these things after construction but won’t look good.
6. Stick to your budget like you don’t want to go over $10k in upgrades even though you are tempted to do so by design consultant. It might be difficult task because most of the standard options provided by builders won’t look good and you are forced to upgrade them. In that case, you can use next tip.
7.Try the compliment approach. If the granite counter top is not the color you wanted and upgrading is expensive and also counter top color is not good as well. Just try to upgrade just one of these items to match the coloring to get the way you wanted together. Avoid upgrading both unless really necessary.
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