New home construction is a process with many moving parts, from designing and engineering the home to managing the budget, managing vendors, and construction. There are also several key moments when something can go wrong, leading to potential problems that can delay or even derail a project. When it comes to new home construction, there are many moving parts. In most cases, there are so many experts because each one brings their own unique knowledge and expertise to the table. While this allows for a more streamlined process that’s less likely to get stuck on any one thing, it also means that each specialist needs to trust that the other people involved in the project know what they’re doing. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. Below we look at five common mistakes that lead to home construction failures.
No Cohesive Vision or Strategy
A key challenge in construction is that all parties involved have their own goals, needs, and desires. The client wants the best possible home with the best materials and design. The architect wants a design that meets the client’s needs but also pushes the boundaries of what’s possible. The general contractor wants to create a schedule that’s doable based on the client’s budget but also meets the needs of the subcontractors and the community in which the home will be built. And all of those people have to work together to create a smooth, successful outcome. At the start of any project, each person has their own set of desires, skill sets, and biases towards certain ways of doing things. They might be more inclined to use a particular type of material or to hire a specific type of contractor.
Poor Communication and Collaboration
One consequence of a lack of communication during the planning stage is that each person comes away with a slightly different idea of what the completed project will look like. This misalignment is one of the primary causes of project failures. It can lead to the architect and the general contractor having different expectations about the type of materials to be used, or even the budget. It can also lead to the client not having a clear idea of what they’re getting. In addition to communication issues during the planning phase, poor communication during the construction phase can also be a major cause of construction project failures. When there’s a lack of communication between client and contractor, or between team members, it can lead to misunderstandings that result in added costs and time delays.
Unclear Requirements and Timing
Construction is a balancing act between various competing factors, including the client’s budget, the type of building materials used, the size of the home, and the schedule for construction. It’s possible for a project to succeed if all of these factors line up perfectly, but it’s unlikely. When designing a new home, architects and engineers need to account for all of the necessary permits and inspections, including the weather. Some of the materials used in the home might be limited in availability. And the general contractor needs to make sure the project is done within the client’s budget.
An Incorrect Estimate of Costs
Most construction projects go over budget to some extent. The key is to make sure that the overages aren’t significant enough to cause a delay or to force a change in the type of materials used. The mistake many construction projects make is basing the budget on incorrect information. This can happen for a number of reasons. The client might not have done their due diligence by researching the cost of materials. The architect might have made an error in estimating the cost of a particular type of material. Or the general contractor might have added an unnecessary markup.
Insufficient Quality Control
It’s important to recognize that some level of quality control is built into most construction projects. If it weren’t, contractors would rarely get repeat business. However, there are ways in which quality control can be “overlooked” or “undermined” during the construction process. – The client can take a hands-off approach to quality control. This can be due to a lack of understanding or knowledge of how the construction process works. Or it can be a decision to let the experts do what they know how to do best. – The architects and engineers can miss opportunities for quality control. This can happen if they’re focused more on creating a design and schedule that meets the client’s needs. – The general contractor can have a more hands-on approach to quality control than necessary. They might be overly focused on getting the project done as quickly as possible, which can lead to a lack of attention to the details.
Wrapping up: The Bottom Line
When it comes to new home construction, there are many moving parts. It’s a complex process that requires a lot of different people working together to make sure all the pieces fit together. It’s possible for even the best-planned projects to be derailed by one or two of these common mistakes. The architect needs to understand the client’s needs and desires. The general contractor needs to be able to meet the client’s expectations while also meeting the needs of their own team and subcontractors. And everyone needs to be on the same page when it comes to timing and budgets. If these parties can work together effectively, home construction is a process that leads to great results.