I am familiar with Peachtree Residential and have sold a few of their homes. But I am not sure what you want to know - are you wanting a blanket endorsement? Some sound advice would be better. Bob's comments below are spot on - NEVER deal directly with the builders agent - they are legally duty bound to get the best possible price and terms for their client - the builder - they are NOT looking out for you, the purchaser. "Not having your own Buyers Broker, is like being given the funds to hire an attorney, but instead going to court alone to try and fend for yourself." (SM)
I speak from experience. In addition to being a licensed GA Broker/Owner, I am an ICC Code Certified Residential Combination Inspector, and former owner of a home inspection and environmental consulting firm. I have evaluated thousands of new and existing homes in metro Atlanta, and I have seen some mistakes made during new home construction that are hard to believe, and I have the pictures to prove it. I will not name names, but the homes involved were built by both local and national builders.
Many of these homebuilding mistakes were correctable, but only because I found them before they were covered up with finish materials while monitoring the construction for my buyer clients - a value added service I perform at no cost. In cases where my client is buying a new home that is already finished and there were problems I was able to detect, I have had to advocate (sometimes vigorously) for my clients to get proper corrections done, sometimes in concert with consulting engineers I work with.
For purchasers with the flawed assumption that buying a new home comes with some kind of "built-in safety net or assurance" that things will go as they should - these were substantial issues that both the builders quality control team, and, county building department inspectors missed or passed of on. In a few cases the issues were so bad, I had to assist my client in getting out of the contract, earnest money intact.
We have some great builders and home plan designers in Atlanta, and relative to other areas in the country, some very good prices for our homes. The problem is when folks ask a question like the one above about a particular builder or developer, you can only answer it in terms of generalities if at all.
The word "builder" does not mean what it did in the 50's and 60's and prior years where there was a builder who knew what he was doing and was on the job everyday to oversee real craftsmen. Today (except for some small high end luxury home builders) building is all mass production and you will never see "the builder - Corp owner". Instead, various contractors are hired for each new development based on the lowest bids rather than being known for their workmanship, and that work is overseen by an employee known as the site superintendent - many who care, and some who don't.
So when you ask most agents what do you think about so and so builders, you often get an unqualified "they are wonderful". My answer is, I like a lot of builders products, some more than others, some have some unique finish and details, and some are more austere, but I have seen both good and bad products from many builders - where their site super dropped the ball or was simply overworked and spread too thin - much like county building inspectors.
From someone who is experienced in, and knows the new home construction industry, you have three options as a prospective new home buyer: 1. Hire me, and get outstanding and continuous support, and unmatched insight and technical services to greatly reduce your headaches all along the way, and assure a sound purchase and well built home. 2. Hire an ordinary agent - and have some limited contract help at the front end - tell them by for 3-6 months until closing - deal with the builder on your own in the mean time and take your chances on the home. 3. Go it alone and risk exposures at every turn, - handle all the unforeseen things that always come up during construction as best as you can - and essentially take your chances on everything.
My final suggestion if you choose option 2 or 3 - hire an ICC Certified Inspector or Licensed Engineer to monitor construction - this is not cheap at about $5 -$7K and up for bi-weekly site visits, but it can make all the difference between a successful outcome and a very unpleasant experience.
Don't hesitate to contact me for a no obligation consultation to discuss your plans. I can definitely help you if you are interested.
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New Home Construction Expert
ICC Code Certified Building Inspector
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