The Most Common Home Construction Mistakes to Look Out For!

by | Jun 13, 2024 | Advice & inspiration, Building basics & regulations

Building a new house is one of the biggest projects you’ll ever undertake. There are a lot of decisions to make and a big chunk of money on the line, so naturally you want things to run as smoothly as possible. As stressful as it is to read, mistakes in the construction process can be expensive and could potentially lead to a house you’re not entirely happy with. Construction projects are notorious for unexpected costs and delays, and everyone wants to avoid them.

Luckily, you’re not the first person to ever build a house and you can draw on the experiences of many others. So, with that in mind, let’s take a look at some of the most common construction mistakes to look out for (and ideally, avoid making yourself!)

Pre-Construction Mistakes

Even in the earliest stages of a build, it’s possible to make mistakes that could cost you big. In fact, as this is when you’ll be organising money to pay for the construction tasks, some of the most important decisions are made right out of the gate.

Underestimating Construction project budgets and costs

The number one concern most people have when it comes to the construction process is building costs. Money troubles can be a major speedbump for any home construction project, especially if you suddenly can’t afford to make repayments. Financial strain is one of the most stressful things anyone can go through. Thankfully, there are a few steps you can take to try to avoid this issue including:

  • Talk to a financial advisor: Not everyone is great with money. Worse, some people are nowhere near as great with money as they think they are! Even those who are amazing with their cash can benefit from the advice of an impartial, third party.
  • Be realistic about what you can afford: It’s easy to get caught up in the idea of the dream home, but this can quickly turn into a nightmare if you begin exceeding, or outright ignoring your budget.
  • Plan: While not all delays can be avoided, doing little things like getting your paperwork in on time and being organised will greatly reduce the chances of things grinding to a halt.

Ignoring Local Building Codes and Regulations

Remember that different states and even local councils will have their own specific regulations. Also, codes and guidelines change over time so it’s always worth double checking before undertaking any construction work.

Not following guidelines can lead to penalties including hefty fines. You’ll likely have to correct the issue as well, and you better believe that’s coming out of your pocket.

Selecting the Wrong Builder for Your Construction Process

It may seem like an obvious statement, but your choice of builder makes or breaks your building experience. We’ve all had friends tell us tales of woeful experiences with contractors or builders that haunt them to this day.

Some key factors to consider when choosing a builder are:

  • Have they worked on projects similar to yours? For example, if you’re looking to build an acreage home, does the builder you’re working with have any experience with this design?
  • Does your builder specialise in anything? Some builders specialise in difficult terrains, custom homes and other areas. Obviously, if you’re after something specific, it’s worth looking into builders who make that their focus.
  • What is your budget like?
  • What are the customer reviews like?

Choosing Low-Quality Materials

Everyone loves a bargain, but there’s no point in saving a few bucks if the material you buy turns out to be rubbish. When purchasing building materials, think of both short-term and long-term costs. More durable, stronger high-quality materials are likely to last longer and often require less upkeep.

Common Planning, Design and Layout Mistakes

Forgetting to consider Needs and Lifestyles

Your home needs to cater to your lifestyle and needs, especially if this is your forever home. When looking at layouts or creating a design, try to imagine you and your family’s lifestyle and whether this will suit it. Consider not just now but also the next ten years or so. Are you planning more children in the future? Do you have mobility issues making stairs in your home more hassle than they’re worth? These are the types of questions you need to be considering when choosing your layout.

Inadequate Layout and Design of the Space

Every house has a limited amount of space to work with, so how you layout your home during the design stages has a huge impact on the final product. Remember, it’s always cheaper to make changes on paper than it is once you’ve started building your house.

During Construction Project Management Mistakes

Common Mistakes During the Construction Process

Even small mistakes can have an impact on your overall construction process. Here are just some of the big mistakes we’ve seen people make:

  • Forgetting permits
  • Not getting paperwork in on time.
  • Choosing the wrong location for your home
  • Not bothering to research potential contractors or the construction company before hiring them
  • Purchasing land without performing soil tests and surveys.
  • Setting an unrealistic budget
  • Have unrealistic expectations for your house
  • Blowing your budget
  • Lack of thorough planning before construction begins

Poor Communication with the Builder

A good relationship with your home builder is key to ensuring a building project runs smoothly. Ideally, your builder will be open throughout the process and happy to answer any questions you have.

Things will go wrong in construction, whether it’s a delay caused by weather, materials that haven’t arrived on time or there are issues with a permit. Even good builders and contractors can’t completely avoid this, but how they handle problems is key. Your builder should be open with all issues and explain to you how they are going to solve the problem.

Long term Construction Mistakes to Avoid

Not Considering Resale Value

If you’re building a custom home, you need to consider whether everyone’s taste is as sophisticated as yours. The more unique and unusual a house is, the more limited the potential market will be. Even if you aren’t building a bespoke design, it’s a good idea to have some idea about the real estate market and what’s in demand.

Focusing Too Much on Aesthetics and Neglecting Functionality

Aesthetics are an important part of your home, but they shouldn’t come at the cost of functionality. You don’t want your house to be the equivalent of just being a pretty face. You will spend a huge chunk of your life in this house and you need a space to be comfortable and useable. Even something simple like a cabinet door, no matter how nice it looks, if it’s annoying to open, that’s really going to drive you up the wall over time. Now imagine if it wasn’t just a cabinet but an entire layout or the design of your roof.

You can make functional designs look great, but it’s more difficult to work the other way around.

Long term Costs

It’s an easy mistake to think of only the construction costs, especially when you’re in the middle of the home-building process. However, a house is a long-term investment and the costs won’t stop when you’re handed the keys.

Some long-term costs to consider include:

  • Heating/cooling costs: Insulation, ventilation and house orientation are key to making your home more comfortable, more often.
  • Sustainable energy options: Ignoring energy efficiency could cost you a chance to save money.
  • Sustainable fixtures and lighting: Installing low-flow water fixtures, energy-efficient appliances and LED lighting can greatly reduce both your energy and water costs.
  • Maintenance: Quality materials will provide better durability, a longer lifespan and less need for repairs. Even little things like chipped paint or a broken faucet can add up over time and cost a pretty penny.
  • Not making the most of natural light and sun orientation in living spaces.

Buildi will help you avoid making mistakes!

Mistakes in construction can lead to delays and be incredibly costly to the homeowner. At Buildi, we know the ins and outs of the building industry and can help you avoid all the common mistakes people make. With our help, you’ll save time, effort and money.


Building a Home

Knockdown Rebuild

Home designs

Advice & inspiration

Building a Home

Knockdown Rebuild

Home designs

Advice & inspiration