Choosing the right builder for your dream home

Building a home is often a once-in-a-lifetime endeavor. It’s a significant investment, both financially and emotionally. Given its importance, choosing the right partner for your construction project in Belgium becomes paramount. How can you ensure that the builder you select will honor their commitments and deliver your dream home?

home builder

The importance of informed decision-making

Constructing a home is not something most people do frequently. Hence, learning from past mistakes might not be an option. Mistakes made during the construction process can have long-lasting implications. Therefore, it’s crucial to gather as much information as possible about the construction process and potential builders before diving in.

Seeking recommendations

While advice from friends, family, or neighbors can be invaluable, consulting with your architect can offer insights from a professional standpoint. They are familiar with the intricacies of the industry and can guide you towards reliable builders based on your project’s requirements and chosen materials. According to Article 22 of the Belgian architects’ code of ethics, architects are obligated to assist clients in choosing a builder. They must consider the builder’s reputation, competence, and the guarantees they offer. If an architect fails in this duty and it results in a detriment to you, their liability can be invoked. However, proving that a loss occurred due to the architect’s oversight is essential.

Financial stability of the builder

If you’re opting for a turnkey home, where a single builder oversees the entire construction process, it’s vital to select a company with the necessary experience and financial stability. Don’t rely solely on word-of-mouth recommendations. Access the company’s annual accounts and financial status through public platforms like the National Bank of Belgium and the Crossroads Bank for Enterprises. This due diligence is equally crucial for smaller renovation projects.

Understanding the fine print

After shortlisting potential reliable partners, initiate discussions for quotations. Take your time comparing the quotes, looking beyond just the total cost. Examine the scope of work, applicable terms, and, importantly, the "fine print" that might lead to unexpected expenses later on.

Advance payments

Financial aspects, such as the advance payment stipulated in the contract, are crucial. As the client, it’s in your best interest to minimize this amount. This reduces potential losses in the unfortunate event of the builder’s bankruptcy. While there’s no legal cap on the advance amount, the "Breyne" law, applicable when the builder and seller are the same entity, limits it to 5% of the total price. In other scenarios, any advance payment should be mutually agreed upon, and builders cannot unilaterally demand it.

Price escalations

In the current inflationary environment, it’s essential to know that builders generally can’t hike their prices without valid reasons. However, if the general terms include a clause allowing price revision due to extended project durations, they might do so. Being forewarned is being forearmed.


Building your dream home in Belgium is an exciting journey. However, the path can be fraught with challenges. By equipping yourself with the right knowledge and partnering with a reliable builder, you can navigate this journey smoothly. Remember, it’s not just about constructing a house; it’s about building a haven for memories, laughter, and love.