Frequently Asked Questions
1. What is a True Built Home?
A True Built Home is built entirely on you lot, 100% from the foundation to the ridge venting of the roofing. We are not mobile or manufactured and then delivered. By building this conventional method, you as the buyer are ensured of the best value, better walk in equity and highest appraisal.
2. Who provides the land?
True Built Home is only the builder of the home. We do not provide land home packages currently. If you have land, then we are a builder that you can consider for your project. If you do not have land but see the economical sense and love the thought of no maintenance or of a new home, then True Built Home may be able to help you.
3. Is the foundation included in your home?
Yes. Our standard home comes with the estimated yards of concrete and steel, plus labor in our price. The 3D modeling and cad program we use has the ability to determine, ahead of time, what the yards will be needed in order to do the foundation on a level lot. Unlike other on your lot builders, in our price we include 2 yards in addition to the estimated amount needed. This is to cover slight imperfections of your dig out and waste left over in the pump truck. Other on-your-lot builders do not include any addition and you will be left with a bill that will have to be paid before further construction can begin. This is another reason why True Built Home is simply a superior way of doing honest ethical business.
In addition, we don’t charge you for the pump truck needed for your foundation. Other on your lot builders in Washington often tell you that they will reimburse you for the pump truck if not used. However, ask them how many they have done without a pump and you will get the ZERO look.
4. What if my lot is sloped?
If your lot is sloped, either mild or very sloped, we will do our best to determine ahead of time how many yards of concrete will be needed in order to do your foundation and charge accordingly (prices vary upon location of lot and current steel and concrete cost). After the designer has completed your home designs, we will have a better idea of how many yards will be needed to do your foundation. Again, we include 2 yards of concrete for waste, but anything above and beyond that is an additional cost to you. This area of building is perhaps the greatest challenge for home builders, because it is literally impossible to determine perfectly how many yards will be needed prior to the excavation being completed. In an effort to be as transparent as possible, we will provide the logs of how many yards have been poured on your foundation for your peace of mind.
5. Can we alter True Built Home standard plans?
Yes. Currently we have two designers on staff with years of designing and construction experience. They can redraw almost any of our plans to match what you are looking for in a home. We have found that some professional designers in actuality may not have good building sense. Our design team has actually worked for many years in construction themselves and so are in a good position to ensure that your home will have door swings correct, window placements, cabinet sizes, flooring areas designated, lighting placements and architectural look completed to ensure that your largest investment is something to enjoy, be proud of and avoid the “guess we’ll have to live with it mentality” that goes along with some homes that looked good on paper, but lacked functionality and flow in real life.
We provide 1 hour free consultation at our main branch location here in Tacoma. You will need to schedule an appointment a head of time with our chief designer. Many have asked if they can do it over the internet and we simply cannot provide the service of excellent and be efficient is such a manner. If more time is required, we will provide you a price for getting the home you want. Most people are pleasantly surprised at how little we charge to alter our plans. If you make changes to our original plan, be prepared to pay more for the home if you have added sq. footage, windows, doors etc. Depending on the changes and the cost you will be charged, we will charge you a head of time and it is separate than the charge for ordering the home.
6. After I pay for the changes for a True Built Home, are they my plans?
No. True Built Home is not in the business of making blue prints. We are an on your lot home builder. The plans are for our use for building your home.
7. Can I make substitutions in a True Built Home such as carpets hardwoods cabinets?
True Built Home is a package deal. In our effort to streamline the process, all prices for standard and upgrades have already been pre-negotiated with vendors and suppliers. We have a large list of upgrades to satisfy the largest number of clients. Often clients are thrilled with our standard prices but want to introduce a product that complicates or interrupts with our streamlined process. It is in the best interest of both the client and True Built Home if the clients simply goes to a builder who’s starting sq. footage price takes into account the multitude of emails, conference calls office meetings and numerous pricing that is sure to happen. In addition to our common sense approach, bankers now have taken a more aggressive stance with borrowers and do not even allow such practices to take place as they did in the past.
8. What if I am a cash deal, will True Built Home make substitution?
Again, anytime we deviate from a routine or our method, it cost more in time and focus. We are determined to provide the most cost effective, economically and proportionately finished home to the consumer. We have a line of products that meet that determination. We realize that there are hundreds of flooring options, hundreds of faucets, several doors, door knobs etc. Having to price even a small portion of those items, make them affordable and stay competitive and then monitor those prices regularly, you can begin to appreciate why True Built Home’s methods are so attractive to both us as the builder, but to the consumer who benefits from our intense efforts. Some builders start at 100 dollars a sq ft because of all the effort it takes to price a home out when not given a pre-set selection of products.
9. Who obtains the permits?
As part of our standard program, we will do what we can to assist you to fill out the application for your building permit. Each city and county or state have different requirements. Some can actually be very complicated and in those situation, hiring a specialist is highly recommend. True Built Home can arrange to have a permitting specialist assist you. Their fees are typically based on the county you are building in and the scope of your project. Please contact us with details and we can get you a quote.
10. How long does it take to complete a home?
As of 2010, many counties, pud’s, fire departments, electrical companies have laid off a number of inspectors and plan reviewers. As a result, what use to a county a day for inspection can now take up to 3 days. Our endeavor has always been to complete a home of 2500 sq ft and below in about 120-130 days. The biggest delay often takes place with the flowing;
i. Owners are to arrange, pay, and execute connecting the permanent power from temp. power when sheet rock is going to be installed. If you have propane or natural gas, you will need to do the same. Plan this a full month in advance. Some owners have waited until the last minute to do this resulting in up to a month delay. Our Project Manager will remind you to initiate this well in advance. Please follow his advice.
ii. We have owners cause delays in back-filling the foundation after we have pass foundation inspection. Although we can deliver lumber and begin framing, often this results in our contractors having to work harder than normal.
iii. Since True Built Home allows the owners to do some things on the home, ie paint, decks, railings when those items are not done within the time allotted, these can cause delays.
iv. When we have cash orders, not getting payment in time can cause a delay. Often the payment initiates the order of a product that we will need in 3 or 4 weeks. Having payment ready a head of time will avoid this.
v. Local inspectors and their personal interpretation of codes
vi. Extreme weather conditions such as snow, freezing, high winds
b. In an effort to be of the greatest benefit to our clients, True Built Home has among the best scheduling software on the market for builders across the USA. We call it the iTrue System. Take a tour here. User name “TBH” password “clientsrfirst” Among our competitors, we are the only one to offer such access to your job and the schedule. Please be conscience that the schedule is meant to be a guide and may not always be exact. As an example; we may schedule our trim carpenter for three days, say Monday through Wednesday. He actually may only need one day and comes on Wednesday. However, the client sees Monday and assumes that is when he should be there. We a lot more time than actually to give all the contractors time to complete their job.
11. Who does the cleaning?
The owner is responsible for the cleanup. We suggest that the client procure either a large utility trailer (secure it) or a dumpster. A 10 yard dump seems to be fine. If either one is at the jobsite, the contractors will be encouraged to dump their waste in it. At sometimes during construction the owners should sweep the floor especially before carpet is installed. Jobsites can become very dirty if owners are not involved.
12. Is the lumber at the jobsite mine?
No. We order more than enough lumber for your home. Whatever’s left over, not cut or damaged, we get a credit from our lumber yard.
13. What happens if something is stolen?
If the borrower is using a bank for the construction loan, you will be required to get “unattached materials” for the duration of the project. This type of insurance covers theft of any material deleiverd, not attached to the home. If you are a cash client, it is in your best interest to do the same.
14. Why are the upgrades more expensive during construction?
The truth is that almost invariably, making changes after construction has started creates sometimes costly problems. For one thing, often materials have already been ordered and it we have to change the order our vendors may have restocking fees. Also, On occasion, a requested changes has resulted in work that has been done (and TBH has paid for) has to be torn out for the changes to be made. Also, allowing changes will result in your schedule changing which can cause costly problems for our subcontractors and delays the completion date. And on occasion, a homeowner is not happy that the completion date is being held up by the results of their own changes. So for a number of reasons we really do not want to make any changes to the original order after construction has begun. Charging an additional markup serves 1) cover the increased costs that will arise, and 2) discourage a homeowner from making changes. We do allow changes, especially if required for an inspection to pass, but we try to keep these to a minimum if at all possible.