In years past, when you wanted to find a quality home builder you asked your friends and neighbours their opinion of a particular professional. Today, individuals can go online to read reviews posted by former clients of a builder. But, how do you know if a review is legit or full of false information? The following questions can help you to better evaluate builder reviews and form your own opinion.
What is the Tone of the Review?
The tone of a review can be a clue as to whether it’s honest or not. If the reviewer is general in his or her criticisms, then it may not be an honest assessment of a builder. An honest review provides an evaluation of specific services provided by a builder.
Does the reviewer use a lot of curse words and damaging personal criticism? These things don’t belong in a legitimate review. A review is supposed to be a simple assessment of a builder’s services and performance.
Is There a Response to the Review from the Builder?
It’s a good sign when a builder responds to both positive and negative reviews. A builder may offer a thank you to clients who provide positive reviews. Alternatively, if someone writes a negative review, the builder responds by reaching out to the person with a promise to correct the problem or make amends. In short, a builder who responds to reviews cares about the satisfaction of clients and maintaining a favourable reputation.
Does the Review Tell the Whole Story?
Someone may post a review about a feature that was overlooked in the building process. For example, the person may point out the builder forgot to caulk a few windows in the upper level of the house. This is something the client should talk to the builder about before leaving a review. If the builder returns to caulk the windows, it should be noted in the person’s review to complete the picture.
Check into the Reviewer’s History
On some review sites, you’re given the ability to look into the history of someone who has left a review. You may find the person has left a collection of negative reviews for a variety of businesses. Or, perhaps you see the person has left a balanced number of positive and negative reviews. If an individual has left a majority of negative reviews, then you may want to question the individual’s sense of fairness.
Consider Several Reviews to Find a General Consensus
Reading through two or three reviews of a builder won’t give you a clear picture of the quality of the professional’s work. It’s more effective to read at least a dozen reviews of a builder. After reading a dozen or so reviews, you should have a general opinion of how clients feel about the quality of the builder’s work.
Does the Builder Communicate with Clients via Social Media?
In addition to looking at a builder’s reviews, look into the professional’s social media presence. Does the builder answer questions or respond to issues from current or potential clients via social media? If so, it means the builder wants to maintain open communication and places a priority on good customer service.
Where Are the Reviews Displayed?
Some websites displaying reviews of builders have an administrator who monitors and filters the reviews as they come in. If you encounter a website like this, you have to hope the administrator is displaying reviews in a fair and complete way. Also, you must hope the administrator doesn’t have any ulterior motives when evaluating reviews.
Check out builder-specific review websites like Avid Ratings where anyone is free to display a review of a builder's work. A person can post a review and see it pop up seconds later on the website. This is a great resource for you to browse through builders in your city and find out who has glowing reviews.
Happy Customers Don’t Always Post a Review
Unfortunately, people who have a good experience with a builder may not post a review at all. They are happy with their brand-new home and are already caught up in decorating and settling in. With all of the activity, they may simply forget to post a review. That’s why it’s not safe to make a judgment about the quality of a builder’s work based on a lack of positive reviews.
Other reasons people don’t post good reviews:
They aren’t Internet savvy and don’t know how to post a review.
They want to live in their home for a while to see if everything is working in a satisfactory way before posting a review. But, as time goes on, they forget to post one.
Lastly, if you’re interested in working with a builder, go ahead and read some online reviews of their work. Then, make arrangements to meet with the builder in-person. Create a list of questions for the builder and look at some of the homes they have built. A face-to-face meeting is very helpful in getting a true impression of a builder.