For those of us who have ever tried a small renovation project on our own we know that they are never as easy as we think they will be. Even building a shed can be daunting we a person does not under stand the concepts of sizing and pricing the job. But this exactly what building contractors do in the course of a day.
If building a home could be thought of as a military campaign then the building contractor would be the general. Every detail to do with the project from the planning to the day you get the keys would be in his or her domain. This not only takes the worry and stress off the client's shoulders while the construction is in progress but also down the road where the mistakes made during the building usually show up.
How Building Contractors Operate
From the time that the building contractor signs the deal to build a new home the responsibility is on his or her shoulders. This is because the contractor has to prove to the clients that the home in the plans can be built on time and on budget. As well, before the bid was submitted the subtrades would have had to be in order. In other words the plumber, electrician and framers, etc. would have their prices in order and then it is the contractor's job to see that these people get the job done for the price quoted.
Permits: Once the plans have been handed out and a rough schedule nailed down for breaking ground the contractor would have to submit the plans for the project to the local authorities to get the permits in place. This takes time and a good deal of juggling to make sure that everything is legalized before the time allotted for the job.
Scheduling: This is one place where amateurs get jammed up and is a possible place where valuable time can be wasted waiting. For once the trades have been committed any interruption in the scheduling creates a domino effect. For example, if the drywallers show up ready to close in the walls on Wednesday and the electrician is not finished yet they may not be able to come back for two weeks which puts the other trades out of whack and increases the time for the project.
Materials: Calculating the cost and ordering of materials is another tough job because the right building supplies have to show up at the right time. Sometimes the subtrades order these but it is up to the contractor to see that everything arrives when it should no sooner, and no later. It would not work out right if the truck carrying the drywall showed up before the roof went on the house as a night's rain could destroy the shipment. Even if it came after the home was closed in and water-tight the large sheets would be in the way of the plumbers and electricians. It is also up to contractor to check and see that the materials are the right type, size, quality and color.
Supervising: Tradespeople are, for the most part, very professional and very good at what they do. If they weren't many of them wouldn't be in business. But human nature requires that there be a leader and a decision-maker on the job site to make sure that the crews are on schedule and doing good work. This is where the contractor comes in because in his or her eyes this job site is the most important whereas the subtrades may have several on the go and are running to fit everything into their own schedules. For example, the drywallers finish taping and mudding and leave the walls to dry. Istead of coming back the next day another job comes up that requires their attention and now it may take a week before they can get back. Suddenly your project is seconded to another one because they can make a few extra bucks at your expense. A contractor knows how to either reign in this type of activity or make sure that the subtrades know the scheduling and any deviation will not be tolerated.
The Finish and Afterward
Most mortgage companies will hold back 10-15% of the contracted price until all the inspections have been completed and the home has an occupancy permit. Building contractors will be on-site for these inspections and schedule to note any missed items or wrongly-installed pieces. In addition they scrutinize every inch of the property scoping out items such as: missed paint spots, crooked moldings, loose flooring pieces. The whole electrical and plumbing system will also be tested as on the final round inspectors only have to make sure the panel is hooked up properly. They may not catch a missed outlet or a light that is missing a connection.
Good building contractors become partners with homebuilders. It is not only the money that is on the line but spreading the name of the company in a good light is worth more work down the road. To make sure you get connected wit the best in the business consult our Contractor Directory and post the job. In this way you will eliminate the stress of finding good people and get to choose which of these building contractors is right for the home that you want to build.Posted by: TrustedPros