Doing a quick internet search on "how to hire a builder" will yield lots of advice. Although it is unlikely that a builder will use an unhappy client as a referral, past clients are still one of your best resources for these questions:
Was the bid thorough or primarily made up of allowances?
Did the builder get answers and prices promptly?
Was the support staff good to work with?
Did the builder do the leg work to secure the building permit?
Did they have to "step in" to get the project done?
Was the craftsmanship as good as expected?
Did they have to create a punch list and wait an unreasonable amount of time for it to be complete?
Were there subcontractor liens that had to be settled prior to closing?
Was all paperwork complete and accurate at closing?
Did the builder do his part to keep the project on schedule?
Would they use the same builder on another project?
One or two clients that have homes currently under construction are good references as well as suppliers, banks, and subcontractors. They can help you get a feel if the builder:
Will be qualified for your level of project?
Pays subcontractors and vendors promptly?
Has a good reputation?
If possible, view projects under construction and at least one completed project similar to yours.
We've touched on several reasons why we are different than other builders (visit our "Our Process" page for more information), but the following key factors should not be overlooked when making your hiring decision:
MB Builders is skilled in a variety of home styles.
We take care of the entire process from dirt to finish including site feasibility and development, design services, building and all of the "little details" often overlooked.
We provide detailed, accurate, "to-the-dollar" bids for your project. Although we will occasionally do a project for "cost+", it usually works out best when you know up front what your home or project will cost.