When you’re thinking of building a new home, visiting a display village is a great way to get the ball rolling, and ultimately choose the right builder for you. You can compare different builders, home styles floor plans, plus much more. It’s often the first step when you’re starting to create your dream home. To ensure you get the most out of your visit, it pays to be prepared! Here are some handy tips to get you started.
BEFORE your visit
1. Plan your time carefully
The display homes you want to visit may not be in the same area, so check out Google maps to get an idea of where they are in relation to each other. Allow about 20 minutes to look through each display home, and another 10 minutes to ask the sales consultant any questions and have a chat with your family or friends. Don’t make the mistake of allocating too many visits on the same day. This can be overwhelming, and it’s highly likely you may not remember much at all!
2. Make a list of ‘Most Wanted’ features
It’s easy to get distracted by all the ‘bells and whistles’ when you’re at a display village. Most builders offer special deals and attractive upgrades that are hard to ignore. If you’ve already made a list of ‘Most Wanted’ features, it will be much easier to stay focused on what’s important to you. It’s also a useful briefing tool, when you talk to the various sales consultants.
3. Pack the essentials
Here are a few essentials that will come in handy for your visit:
- Smartphone with a camera to take snaps of what you like and don’t like
- Notepad (or take notes on your phone, if you prefer)
- Tape measure for room sizes, kitchen bench length, etc. You can also ask for brochures detailing all the dimensions of each display home
- Food and water for the day. Some display villages have coffee and food vans to help keep you going!
DURING your visit
1. Make notes and take photos
There’s a lot to take in so as you’re walking through each display home, make notes and take photos, so you won’t forget what you’ve seen.
2. Ask yourself some important questions
- Does the layout of the home suit the way you and your family live – now and in the future?
- Do the rooms flow from one to the next?
- How would furniture work in each space? What size beds will fit comfortably in the bedrooms? Are you being distracted by furniture and styling, when you should be concentrating on the home itself?
- How do you rate the workmanship throughout the home?
3. How does the display home compare to what you really get?
Display homes are built to impress, so make sure you find out if the home you’re looking at features standard inclusions or lots of added extras. Make sure you ask for the total cost of the house on display.
4. Ask the sales consultant questions
After all, that’s what they’re there for! Chatting to them will give you a feel for their level of knowledge and what kind of service you can expect during the build process. You may like to ask:
- If you’ve already purchased a block of land, which home designs would be suitable?
- What’s included in the base price?
- Are you able to make changes to the floor plan?
- When you get a quote, will it be a fixed price or will it be an estimate which is subject to change?
AFTER your visit
1. Review each display home
Make sure you review your notes and have a chat to your family or friends after each display home you look at, while it’s still top of mind.
2. Check each home’s features against your ‘Most Wanted’ list
Which homes met your criteria? Try to narrow down your shortlist.
3. Make a time for a return visit
See if you can set some time aside during the week, when the display village will be less crowded. You may also like to compile a list of more detailed questions to ask each home builder on your short list.