One of the often asked question is how much do your homes cost per square foot. I know most people ask this to try to find some reasonable budget to start being able to design a home. So I understand the question but that is really a hard question to answer.
Let me do my best to explain why it’s so very hard to answer that question. First off not all homes are equal in many ways. Quality of materials, quality of sub-contractors, energy usage, what’s included just to name a few? Let’s break down each one so you can start to understand what might be different.
Quality of materials. In our homes we use the highest quality lumber, exterior sheeting, foundation wall system, and insulation, duct work for heating and cooling, windows and doors and roof materials. Each one of those has a dollar figure attached to the quality of the materials. If you are going to live in your home for 2 years maybe now of this matters to you, but if you are going to live in it for the next 20 plus years it’s going to matter, not today but when you start replacing these things or they don’t work as designed.
After quality of materials sub-contractors comes in a real close second. I say this because you can purchase the very best quality materials and if they aren’t installed properly then you really have nothing better than average quality stuff. Not all sub-contractors do the same quality of work. I was a sub before becoming a builder and because of the work I saw going on in the building business is why I starting building homes. I thought people deserved to have a better built home. Because many times the builder is looking only at price with the sub-contractor the quality comes at a real disadvantage to the quality of the product used. High quality sub-contractors get paid more. I just talked with a potential customer the other day that said he was looking at the model home of another builder and each time he went through the house he saw more and more bad work. I said to him that’s the best product he can deliver with the quality of sub-contractor he employs. If the model looks like that your home will not be any better.
Energy usage or in today’s terms (Energy Star) is a word thrown around in the industry like everyone is doing the same thing. Well I am here to tell you it’s not even close. First off to be a true Energy Star Builder you have to sign a agreement to have your homes tested by a third party inspection system. Last time I looked on the government Energy Star web site only 2 builders in Lucas County are listed as Energy Star Builders and I am the only one that has committed to make ALL my homes Energy Star. Because of a glitch in the Energy Star web site I am not listed as a 100% energy star builder today but in the next quarter they will fix that. I tell people all the time the car companies have a 5 star crash rating on cars that they prove by an outside testing company. We have the same thing in the building business and so if your builder says he is an Energy Star Builder but can’t show you paper work from a third party inspection service to back it up he’s just blowing smoke. I am more than willing to show you the paper work on every house I built last year or any year since 2002. We seal duct work, use better insulation, better HVAC systems, better foundation 25% better, better windows, better lighting, better exterior wall and roof sheeting just to name a few. Take our challenge and ask your builder if they use any of these products and if not why? He will have a hard time explaining why he isn’t using those products when he knows they are better.
I love the quote by Zig Ziglar which says “I would rather explain price once than quality forever”. This means long after a person forgets he got a good price he will be stuck with bad quality. At Moline Builders we want to explain once to you the fact that out price might be higher but it’s not because we are making more on our product but we are giving you a better quality product. So once you understand that the QUALITY is something you will get to enjoy forever.