Building in Nova Scotia While Residing Away - What Can You Expect?

Whether you’re building a summer or retirement home, or you’re relocating altogether, Nova Scotia is a beautiful place to reside.

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First of all, welcome!

Whether you’re building a summer or retirement home, or you’re relocating altogether, Nova Scotia is a beautiful place to reside.

Still, building a home here before you make your move can understandably be daunting.

You’ll have lots of decisions to make and planning to do. That’s why it’s important to find a builder you trust, who will involve you in the building process even though you’re not able to be there physically.

So, how do you go about doing that?

Research, research, research

As you interview potential builders, ask them if they have experience building for clients living from afar. If so, what is their process?

It should include a detailed schedule and specifications, as well as a thorough documentation system.  These elements are important when it comes to keeping the project running smoothly and on schedule.

Ask for testimonials from previous clients who have been through the process. A builder should be able to provide testimonials or even contact information from clients they’ve worked with previously, so you can feel confident in your decision.

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Any builder open to working with clients living out of province should be big on communication. He or she should be easily accessible to answer any questions you have and to put your mind at ease, knowing you can’t be there to meet face-to-face.

This means promptly returning calls, connecting you to those who can provide further information or following up for you, and offering pictures or samples to help you visualize what your new home will be like.


Plan your visits

While living near your new home as it’s being built may not be an option, you should plan for three visits during construction.

The first visit should take place as the project starts, the second after the house is weather-tight and ready for sub-trades, and the final visit at closing.

During the first visit, your builder should meet you onsite to locate the house on the lot, mark the area to be cleared, locate the well and sewage disposal system, and define the size and location of the driveway.

Be prepared to select the windows and doors, as well as all exterior finishings, such as the shingles, siding and brick. Your builder should be willing to accompany you on supplier visits to help with these decisions and make an interior decorator available to you.

Your second visit should be spent selecting all interior finishes with the help of your builder and interior decorator. Your home’s electrical, plumbing, flooring, cabinets, paint colours and staircase should be decided at this point.

A site visit and guided tour will give you a much better understanding of your new home. While all the details might not be completely decided at this point, you should have the opportunity to meet the suppliers and trades working on your home.

Your third visit should involve a walk-through of your finished home. Your builder should answer any questions you have and explain the various systems and products that have been included in your new home.

Building a new home while living out of province takes a little extra effort and a lot of trust and communication, but it can be done with the right builder.

Priscilla and Sanford have successfully gone through the homebuilding process with Sawlor Built Homes while residing outside of Nova Scotia. Read more about their experience >> here.

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Kaila Sawlor Sawlor Built Homes Custom Home Builder in Nova Scotia

Kaila Sawlor-Dion

Kaila is the Marketing Manager of Sawlor Built Homes. She continuously updates our profile on Facebook, Instagram, Houzz, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest, and is focused on all marketing initiatives.

A third generation family member of Sawlor Built Homes, Kaila joined the company in 2011. She is an active member of the Canadian Home Builder's Association - Nova Scotia Marketing Committee and she continues to update her education and training, intent on becoming an industry leader in new home marketing.

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The Sawlor process made the building at a distance much smoother than we had ever anticipated.

Janice & Ian


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