Owner acting as general contractor or expect the unexpected
Some owners decide to act as general contractors hoping to save on average 10-25% of construction cost. This means that they first have to get bids and estimate the cost of the project, then hire and supervise the work of subcontractors. Needless to say that the ability to read project drawings and some general construction knowledge are useful, if not necessary. Being aware of building codes and local regulations is also a must.
When they select a subcontractor based on bids received, they must be fully aware of the scope of work covered by the bid. They should be able to plan the timeframe for the services and ensure that concurrent work of other trades goes unhampered.
Coordinating work of subcontractors is a difficult balancing act that requires several hours a day on site during work hours. Many owners “learn as they go” which translates into delays, higher than intended costs and stress. It is human to err and mistakes and unanticipated situations can be extremely trying. Weather – related delays and unreliable subcontractors can be a factor.
This is when Project Manager comes on board. We strive to ensure construction will turn an abstract project into an original home that Clients will enjoy living in. We look after our Client’s interests by:
• Seeking bids from contractors – we prepare bidding drawings and help Client to avoid bid mistakes arising out of misinterpretation of project’s requirements by the contractor. We can make recommendations based on our previous experience with a contractor.
• Evaluating bids based on best value to ensuring they match the scope and selecting contractors that can meet the requirements. The Client makes final decision which contractors to choose.
• Interpreting construction documents and correcting issues that arise during construction. We know how construction elements relate to each other and can prevent certain problems before they occur. In some cases problems turn into opportunities that will make the design more efficient. This becomes most important in case of alterations and renovations of older homes where surprises are the norm rather than exception.
• Making site visits to coordinate contractors’ work and ensure the quality of work. Client must be aware, however, that although we do our best to ensure high workmanship standards, it is the contractor who is solely responsible for construction techniques, methods and schedules. The contractor directly supervises and conducts the construction work. We will not accept non-confirming work and ensure mistakes are rectified. We will keep Client up to date on the progress of work.
• Accepting proper work and rejecting non-conforming work. Determining if the work has advanced or been completed as needed. We will review contractor’s bills and release payments only when we are sure that the contractor has satisfied all the obligations to the Client.
• Communicating with municipal departments and performing other tasks to keep the project on track.
For advice and more information call us at 905.812.7674.