Why Construction Contracts Are Important

Arturo from GT Roofing shares with us in our recent blog conversation that it is always important to sign a written contract when entering any kind of business transaction. The same applies to construction projects, which are usually quite complex and time-sensitive. A construction contract is a written statement that clearly outlines the obligations and expectations of the parties involved as well as how they will share the risks from the start to the completion of the project. There are many reasons why construction contracts are important.

Sets the Terms of the Contract 

Without a written statement, the expectations and interests of the parties may change over time, resulting in disputes. A construction contract ensures that the terms for the project including the responsibilities and obligations of each party are set and agreed upon before the start. It also outlines how any potential risks will be handled during the project. 

Construction contracts set out the terms of the project to avoid any elements of dishonesty along the way. It gives a clear road map on the roles that each party will play and how the project will smoothly run from start to completion. That also eliminates any assumptions that could jeopardize the project. 

Legal Provisions for Default 

Construction contracts are legally binding documents that all the parties involved must honor. Although both parties agree to the terms of the contract, one party, especially builders may fail to deliver. On the other hand, the owner of the project may also fail to pay. Many other disputes could still arise in the course of the project. 

The benefit of a construction contract is that it also offers provisions for default to cushion both parties from unnecessary losses. That means you can file a claim to seek a legal settlement in case one of the parties fail to honor the terms of the contract. 

Regardless of the size or duration of your construction project, you should always sign a written construction contract. Consult a legal professional for help with obtaining a construction contract when planning a construction project. 

Helpful Tips for Growing a Construction Business

Once you start a construction business, you can focus on growing it. That means you aim to expand your construction business into new territories or markets. Whether you’ve been in the industry for years or starting, growing a construction business requires planning. Here are tips to help you grow your business in the construction industry.

Establish a Strong Team

Your business will only grow if you have a great team. Therefore, hire knowledgeable, skilled, and dependable construction workers. To retain the best workers, reward and promote them for their reliability and hard work.

Lead and Manage the Business

Don’t be a manager from whom employees take orders. Instead, be a leader for your employees. Essentially, be a leader that your employees can emulate and follow. Trying to manage employees will give them the impression that you’re not confident in their ability. And this can demotivate them, thereby affecting their productivity.

Invest in Your Construction Business

Invest money and time in your construction business. And this may include investing in technology and new equipment. You can also invest in employee training and business marketing.

Some construction companies use word of mouth to promote their businesses. You can also use this approach to get more work. However, you can also ask customers to tell their friends about your services.

Utilize Your Strengths

Focus on doing more based on the strength of your business. Decide whether you want to be known as a general contractor or an all-around, decent general contracting company. Also, focus on innovation to become an industry leader. You can also specialize in specific industry aspects or the construction of certain houses.

Focus on Quality

Nobody will hire your business again if not impressed by the quality of your work. Therefore, aim to meet the highest quality standards with every project. That way, you will always have customers knocking at your door.

How Long Should You Take to Find a Builder?

So, you have decided to build a house, planned, budgeted, and gotten financing for your construction project. The next step is now finding a builder to execute your plan. Well, once you hopefully get secure the permissions to build a house, you should now start looking for a builder. 

You should not rush the process of hiring a contractor. Ideally, you should find a contractor that will stick to the budget and complete your construction project according to plan. So, how long should it take to find the right builder? 

The Average Time for Finding the Right Builder 

On average, finding the right builder should take between 3 and 6 weeks. By the end of this time, you should be signing a contract with the builder to start the building process. The contractor can take between 3 and 4 weeks to mobilize before getting on your site. And, this can even stretch longer if the contractor is busy. 

Therefore, allow yourself flexible timing when hiring a builder. Unexpected delays may also lead to extra expenses. Make sure that these are captured in your construction budget too. 

What Goes into the Time Taken to Find a Builder? 

Several things happen when hiring a builder. These can be categorized into several stages that will consume your time. 

  • Meeting potential builders: You won’t hire the first contractor that you come across. What’s more, builders could be busy and not available to meet you when you are. Therefore, set 1 to 2 weeks as the time you will take to meet builders. 
  • Getting quotes: You can take another 1 to 2 weeks getting quotes from contractors. That’s because the contractor will need time to come up with a quote for your project after meeting and discussing your project. 
  • Signing a contract: Again, set 1 to 2 weeks for preparing and signing a contract. The builder will take the time to prepare the contract. You will need time to go through the contract, probably with your lawyer, before signing. 

Ideally, you should not rush to hire a builder for your construction project. Instead, take your time to find and hire the right contractor for your project.

Simple Houses That Are Easy To Build

House construction costs sometimes prompt people to put their plans on hold. The limited budget is the reason why some people consider small units in condominiums. However, you don’t have to put your plans for building a home on hold just because of the involved costs. Instead, consider these simple houses that you can easily build even when you have a tight budget. 

Mud Bricks House 

A cottage made of mud bricks and wooden structures is easy to build. And you can build this house with help from friends or relatives. The cost of materials and labor is low. Elements like windows and doors are ready-made. Such factors make building this house quite easy. 

Concrete House 

A small concrete house can have everything that you may need in a home. It can have a simple design and a pool in a small yard. The design can include a patio. And, unpolished concrete can be used to build the entire house. This can give it personality and character. Metal or wood frames can be used to make the house look simple but elegant. 

Prefabricated House 

Modular prefabricated homes are a popular alternative among modern families. They are very common among families that are starting. That’s because additional modules can be attached to them when necessary. Prefabricated houses are easy to assemble and transport. They also cost less when compared to traditionally built houses. You just need the help of an experienced architect to install a prefabricated house. 

Two-Story House 

A two-story house has a simple construction process. That’s because the design requires the ground floor to have well-proportioned windows that correspond to those on the upper floor. When built properly, this house looks elegant with black frames and unpainted walls. To add some texture and color to the façade, stone can be used to cover parts of the wall. 

In nutshell, there are many types of houses that are simple and easy to build. And, the cost of their construction can be reduced by using locally available materials. Simply research for the house to build and the required materials to make a more informed decision. 

The Best Construction Practices

The construction industry is among the most important sectors of the economy. It is also one of the largest industries, employing more than 7% of the total workforce. But, to excel in this industry, you should follow the best construction practices. Here are the major construction practices that you should follow. 

Procurement 

This practice involves selecting the right construction management method, the best design team, the delivery team, and the facility operation team. The best practice is to focus on lump-sum contractors and low price tendering. What’s more, procurement practice should follow the life cycle of the project. 

Partnering 

Partnering is a practice that requires a collaborative approach to construction. It is characterized by open book procedures in pricing, agreed problem resolution, cooperation and trust, continuous improvement, and mutual objectives. 

Partnering is very important because it enhances the achievement of greater monetary value, higher profits, quality improvement, and project completion. 

Risk Management 

This entails maintaining a register of risks. It helps in identifying potential risks and preventing them. It also entails recording the methods used in the management of the encountered risks. This information becomes useful in future projects. 

Risk assessment and analysis ensures that the right actions are used to protect different teams during a construction project. These activities are performed regularly and no case should be ignored. 

Value Management 

This is an important construction practice. It considers cost, time, and risk constraints to ensure that the business or client’s needs are met. Value management uses methods like the collaboration with the teams that are in charge of project design, as well as, delivery. All stakeholders and end-users are also involved.

How to Compose a Construction Contract

A construction contract is a written agreement between the property owner and the construction contractor, citing the particular terms of the project. It states the parties that will be involved in the project and their obligations, costs, and duration of the work among other requirements. While engaging a lawyer is usually the easiest option for some homeowners, you can also opt for a standard contract or DIY. 

The Basic Elements of a Construction Contract 

Since you will need construction workers from time to time, it is important to learn how to compose a construction contract. A standard construction contract should comprise the following key elements. 

  • Project owner. 
  • General Contractor – The information about the contractor should also include his or her license number.
  • Sub-contractors – Indicate whether the general contractor will need to hire additional workers for the project. 
  • Project Site – The address or location of the worksite. 
  • Description of the Work – You should precisely explain all the construction works to be done with the specific agreements for the same. 
  • Contract Pricing and Payment – Give a proper breakdown of all the construction costs and, state how payments will be made. 
  • Accompanying Documents – Attach all the documents related to the contract including building plans and blueprints. 
  • Construction Materials and Labor – State the party that will supply and pay for the construction materials and labor. 
  • Licensing and Permits – The contract should show the party that will obtain the required permits and licenses for the proposed works. 
  • Starting and Completion dates.  
  • Work Changes – State how any changes to the agreements will be handled after the commencement of the project. 
  • Project Warranties – You should also indicate the specific warranties given by the contractor for the project. 

The above elements are the most important when developing a construction contract. However, you may also want to consider adding other aspects like insurance, indemnification, inspections and force majeure. Overall, you should focus on composing a contract that mutually benefits both the project owner and contractor. 

The Ultimate Guide to Planning a Kitchen Renovation

There are various approaches to conducting kitchen renovations. You can opt for partial renovations or a full re-make of the entire space. Regardless of the approach, success lies in how well you plan the project. In case you are wondering how to go about planning a kitchen renovation, check out the following guidelines. 

Choosing a Theme 

The first step to undertaking a kitchen remodeling project is choosing a suitable theme for the space. To determine the theme, you should think about what you intend to achieve with the new set up. It could be to increase the working space, upgrade older fittings or improve the appeal. Knowing the goals of the renovations will help you settle on a suitable style. 

Optimizing the Space 

One of the reasons for kitchen renovations is to organize the space in a way that makes it easier for you and other people to use it. To optimize the space, you may want to think about the layout of the floors, walls, ceiling and other structural features therein. Over the years, many home owners have opted for kitchen islands but, the trend is changing. Today, people prefer kitchens with big tables.

When optimizing the space, you should also consider the particular appliances and hardware that will be used in the kitchen. Nevertheless, choose an approach that will enable you to get the most of the kitchen space. 

Kitchen Floors 

Kitchens usually experience a lot of traffic, which makes the flooring to wear out quickly. Besides, the flooring is also subject to damage by food spills, scratch marks, grease and oils. Therefore, you should go for durable and attractive flooring materials like ceramic tiles, bamboo and stone. 

Countertops and Sink Designs 

Countertops can be redesigned using different kinds of materials but, granite and quartz are the most popular alternatives. Natural stone, tiles and metal can also provide a great new look. With regards to sink designs, consider options that will complement the layout and flow of the space. You can choose sink designs with single, double or triple basins. Regardless of your choice, just make sure that the countertops and sink designs match the theme. 

When planning a kitchen renovation project, it is also advisable to choose proper lighting that serves both functional and aesthetic purposes. Overall, a suitable kitchen remodeling plan should emphasize improving the usefulness and beauty of the space.

The Environmental Factors to Consider in Construction

When starting a construction project, it’s important to know environmental factors that you should be concerned about. The construction industry is among the largest globally. It employs millions of people across the globe. However, the tremendous activities of this industry can affect the environment negatively. Here are some of the environmental factors that you should consider when starting a construction project.

Waste Management

Any construction project creates waste. The amount and type of waste generated will depend on the construction type. This waste can have negative effects on the environment. In most cases, soil and water can be contaminated if there are no effective waste management measures in place. To avoid this have a safe and effective waste management system in place when starting a construction project.

Energy

A construction project needs electricity for different reasons. Processing, power tools, transportation of materials and heavy machinery are just some of the ways the construction industry uses energy. It’s therefore important to take appropriate measures to conserve energy. Pay keen attention to the way energy is used at your site to avoid unnecessary energy wastage.

Architecture concept with drawing compass on blueprints.

Noise

The noise produced at the construction site can pollute the environment for both the local inhabitants and construction workers. Noise produces stress which can lead to neurological diseases. Thus, noise from a construction site can be a serious environmental issue and construction workers are the most affected. To avoid exposure to noise, construction workers should wear protective gear. It’s also important to fence the construction site to ensure that only authorized persons have access to it.

Before you start your construction project, acquire all permits necessary to ensure that you have complied with all requirements of the environmental conservation agency. Local authorities have measures in place to ensure that contractors do not damage the environment. That’s why they require them to get permission to undertake any form of construction.

 

6 Steps for Successful Planning of a Construction Project

Many people are tempted to dive into their construction projects directly. That’s because they want to start early so that they can be done with their projects quickly. However, careful planning is very important for any construction project. Here are important steps that will ensure successful planning of your construction project.

Hire Design Professionals

To come up with a plan for your construction project and its detailed scope, you need help of a design professional. This can be an interior designer or an architect or even both depending on the nature of the project. However, construction companies work differently. Some designers handle designs that do not require extensive additions or structural work. Architects on the other hand take on different jobs and their work includes acquiring permits and designing floor plans.

However, an architect can leave electrical plan, kitchen and baths to other professionals. It’s important to choose design professionals depending on the needs of your project. Essentially, have an in-person meeting to discuss your needs with these professionals to determine whether they can offer what you need.

Come Up with a Plan

Once you have chosen your design professionals, come up with a plan. You can reach design goals in different ways. Plans are known as schematic designs and they involve a rough floor plan layout. Some may include exterior views of the building. Talk to design professionals about your needs and work together to come up with a plan for your dream building.

Interview Contractors

A plan provides an overview of the building to be constructed. Use this when approaching contractors. Ask different contractors for estimates based on the schematic design of the building. Also ask contractors to show you their past projects before you make the hiring decision.

Go Shopping

Shop for the materials required for your construction project. You can do this with help of designers and your chosen contractor. There are many things to buy including doorknobs, windows, countertops, doors, and light fixtures among others. Work with experienced construction experts to keep cost down.

Get the Necessary Permits

Getting permits can take you a day or several months depending on the project’s scope and location. But, before you apply for permits, have ideas on the time the project will take. Permit fees vary depending on location and project size.

Start the Project

Once you’ve submitted permits and selected materials, the contractor can finish up on pricing and come up with the construction contract. Read the contract carefully and sign only when comfortable with its terms.

Generally, planning a construction project can be a long process. Nevertheless, following these steps will make it easy and ensure smooth completion of the construction project.

Questions to Ask Before You Hire a Home Remodeling Company

Questions to Ask Before You Hire a Home Remodeling Company

Before you hire a home remodeling company,  according to Mr. Art over at gtroofingcompany.net there are questions that you should ask. Asking questions enables you to know what you can expect from the remodeling company. It also enables you to determine whether the company is good for your project.

Here are some of the questions that you should ask before you hire a home remodeling company:

For How Long Have You Been Providing Home Remodeling Services?

A company that has been in business for years, faced and overcome many challenges is the best to handle your home remodeling project. Such a company has experts that understand different aspects of home remodeling projects. They also have the best technical, business and service skills. This translates to a better experience and quality results.

Are You a Licensed Home Remodeling Contractor?

In most countries, contractors are required to be registered by the law in order to operate. Therefore, ask the contractor whether they are licensed to operate in your area. Ask for their license number so that you can verify their claim. When you have the license number of a contractor, you can also find out whether they owned another company under another name.

How Can I Reach You?

It’s important that you get the physical address of the company that you want to hire. Also get its cell phone and business numbers before you commit to working with it. Avoid a company that is not willing to give you these details because it means you can’t reach it if something goes wrong.

Do You Have an Insurance Policy?

Make sure that the home remodeling company that you hire carries an insurance policy. Bear in mind the fact that though some contractors have insurance, it may not cover the properties that they remodel sufficiently. Therefore, choose a company whose insurance covers your home and workers to avoid being held liable in case of injuries or accidents during the remodeling project.

It’s also important that you know the amount that the company will charge for your home remodeling project. Also choose a company that has completed a project similar to yours in the past. Ask these questions to choose a company that will make your project run seamlessly. Avoid a company that doesn’t want or is unable to answer your questions satisfactorily.