How To Compare Building Quotes

Once you’ve sifted through possible builders, created a shortlist and obtained a range of quotes, you’ve already overcome some of the greatest challenges in custom home building. So, what’s next?

Your next mission is to compare quotes. Many people, understandably, find this process overwhelming, which is why we’ve put together a list of things to look for when comparing building quotes.

The bottom line

While it’s by no means the only thing to consider when comparing quotes, the best place to start is with the total contract price. While a vastly cheaper quote may indicate missing items in the bill of works or specifications list, the bottom line is certainly important.

Make sure your selections are included

Many people will tell the tale of agreeing to a quote and signing a contract, only to be hit with surprises expenses down the track. Much of this can be avoided by making as many selections as possible upfront – and ensuring these have been considered in the quote.

Take your time and do your research on exactly what you want in your home so every possible detail can be included in your quote. While the quote may not be 100 per cent accurate, it should be close enough that any discrepancies don’t surprise you or lead to a budget blowout.

Look carefully at any exclusions

Just as you should ensure your specifications are included in your quote, it’s important to carefully peruse any exclusions too. Many builders won’t include items like preliminary site costs and landscaping in a building quote, so you’ll need to consider these costs on top of the contract price.

If one builder’s quote has come in far below another, it’s worth reading carefully through their list of inclusions and exclusions. While it might be cheaper now, a lower quote may end up costing you more in the long run.

Research beyond the quote

Reading a building quote thoroughly is important. But it pays to research beyond this as well. Do you know any of your builder’s previous clients that you could ask about their experience? Have you read any reviews about them and their work? Have you driven past any of their completed projects?

Of course, it’s always best to compile a list of your own questions and concerns for each shortlisted builder, in order to determine their construction expertise and more importantly their reputation.

Undertake a comprehensive comparison

It’s human nature to simply choose the cheapest quote without doing further research or comparison, but this is not always the best choice when it comes to building your dream home.

At times, a cheaper quote can mean a builder hasn’t included all of your specifications and requests or has based the figure on a generic square metre rate. Remember, there are many variables that make up a custom home – and this should be reflected in a custom building quote.

Before you choose a quote, you should ask the builder if they will show you an open-book breakdown of their quote. If they have been transparent with their costings, they should be happy to show you how they’ve gotten to the final quote figure. Not only will this show you what your investment is going towards, but it will also reveal whether the builder is trustworthy enough to work with.


If you’re ready to turn your dream custom home into a reality, get in touch with the team at Stratti Building.