Be In The Know

April 25,2024

6 Questions You Should Ask Your Custom Home Builder

So you are considering a custom home —that’s an exciting place to be!

But building a dream home is more than just picking out beautiful tile designs. It’s about finding the right home builder who will make your vision a reality.

Think of choosing a home builder as selecting a partner for a big adventure. You want someone reliable, experienced, and someone who gets what you’re trying to do. That’s why asking the right questions upfront is key. It’s about more than just avoiding headaches—it’s about making sure your investment pays off with the home you truly want.

We have put together six must-ask questions to get you started. We’ve been in this business a while and know the difference these questions can make.

Let’s ensure your custom home journey is one you’ll look back on with a smile, not a sigh of regret!


Question 1: What Experience Do You Have with Custom Homes?

Three homes under construction overlooking the lake

Don’t be fooled by a fancy website.

In the world of building, experience counts way more than great marketing. A builder who’s built custom homes knows how to handle the unique challenges—that’s what you want.

Why this matters:

  • Problem-solving skills: Every custom build has its curveballs. A seasoned home builder has the know-how to navigate them without blowing your budget.
  • Quality you can trust: Their past work shows they can deliver the craftsmanship you expect.
  • No wasted time: Experienced home builders streamline the process. That means fewer delays and a home you can move into on schedule!

The bottom line is that building a custom home in Canada takes expertise. Choose a home builder who’s been there, done that, and has the finished homes to prove it.


2. Can You Share References or Past Project Details?

Don’t take a builder’s word for their experience—see the proof! A reputable builder will proudly show off their track record and be confidently transparent about sharing their knowledge and experience.

Why this matters:

Style check: Do the homes they build match your vision? Pictures are worth a thousand promises.

The real story: Past clients of home builders will tell you how the home-building process really went – the good, the bad, and the potentially ugly.

Trust factor: Seeing happy clients and beautiful work builds confidence. You’re investing a lot, so you need to feel good about who you hire.


3. What Is Your Process for Changes or Modifications Mid-Project?

home construction with view of mountains and lake in the background

Fact: even the best-laid plans sometimes shift when you’re building a custom home. You may find the perfect tile or change your mind about the kitchen layout. There’s nothing wrong with that! But it needs to be managed right.

Why this matters:

Flexibility is key: A good home builder can accommodate changes without completely ignoring the plan. They are used to this complex process, where things don’t necessarily go according to plan, and can adapt to keep things on track.

No surprise bills: The home builder you choose should have a transparent process to help you understand how changes will affect your costs before they happen.

Less stress for you: Knowing that there is a system in place for changes will give you major peace of mind!

The reality of building a custom home is that change happens, especially with things outside your control (think unforeseen import costs, law changes, material price or availability changes).

Choose a builder who makes it a smooth part of the process, not a nightmare.


4. How Do You Determine the Project’s Timeline and Budget?

Let’s be honest: no one likes a project that drags on forever and costs way more than expected. That’s why how your builder handles these things is a BIG deal.

Why this matters:

Realistic expectations: You need to know when you can move in and the final price tag.

Spotting red flags: A builder who can’t clearly explain their process for these things is a significant risk.

Protecting your investment: Delays and cost overruns hurt. Having a solid plan in place is your best defense.

Tip: Ask how often you’ll get progress updates and budget reports. Can you track them online? The more transparent the process, the better. At 3rd Generation Homes, we use a software called BuilderTrend, to give you full transparency on the progress of your build. 


A good home builder treats your timeline and budget like their own. Look for someone who’s organized, realistic, and focused on keeping you in the loop.


5. What Warranties or Guarantees Do You Offer?

Listen, even the best-built homes can have problems pop up later. It’s just the nature of construction. That’s why warranties are your safety net.

Why this matters:

Protecting your investment: Building a house is expensive, and warranties mean you’re not on the hook for major repairs down the road.

Peace of mind: Knowing you’re covered if things go wrong helps you sleep better at night.

Sign of quality: Builders who offer good warranties believe in the homes they build, which is a good sign of quality craftsmanship. That’s something you want.

Tip: Don’t just ask about warranties – get the specifics in writing. What do they cover, and for how long?

Stuff happens. A good home builder stands behind their work, even after you move in.


6. How Will We Communicate Throughout the Home Building Process?

Building a custom home means a lot of decisions, big and small. You need to be able to reach your home builder, and they need to keep you updated.

Why this matters:

Less stress: Regular communication keeps those “what’s going on?!” moments at bay.

Problem prevention: Small issues can be caught before they snowball if you’re in close contact with your builder.

You’re in control: Good communication should make you feel like a true partner in the process, not left in the dark.

Tip: Ask how they like to communicate (email, text, online portal, etc.). Ideally, choose a builder whose style matches yours.

Truth is, open communication builds trust. Look for a home builder who makes staying in touch a priority, not an afterthought.


Building a custom home is one of the biggest investments you’ll ever make. That’s why choosing the right home builder should feel like something other than a gamble. Asking these six questions will help you find a partner you can trust, not just a contractor.

Ready for a building experience that’s as good as the final result?

If you want a team that treats your project like theirs, it’s time to talk to 3rd Generation Homes. We built our reputation on beautiful homes and happy clients – let us show you why.

Contact us today to get started on your dream home in Kelowna!