6 Things You Might Forget About When Working As Your Own General Contractor

Construction & Contractors Blog

While some homeowners prefer a hands-off approach to home construction, others want to act as their own general contractor, managing the day-to-day operation of the construction site and the slew of subcontractors hired to perform the actual work. Anyone with project management experience that is organized and detail-orientated can handle the job. There are, however, a few key components that might slip through the cracks. 

1. Lien Waivers: The single most important aspect of working with subcontractors--after examining their license, BBB rating, and references--is the lien waiver. This simple piece of paperwork is vital to you and to your construction loan. Basically, it is the subcontractor signing off that he or she has been paid in full. Your bank will require this after each draw payment.

2. Portable Toilet: Yes, you need a toilet. Renting a portable toilet from a portable toilet rental service and having it cleaned often is essential to keeping a work site functioning. You must provide these services to anyone working on your construction project. 

3. Vegetation: Any trees and plants that you want to save must be protected. Fencing off areas around plants with orange safety fencing helps, but trees need more room. Fencing off the trunk does not protect the roots from damage, which could kill the tree over time. A tree's root system extends as far as the outer branches and so should your safety fence if it is to be effective. If you are unsure, consult your landscaper. 

4. Dumpster: Providing a dumpster onsite is obvious, but requiring contractors to use it may not be. Every contract with every subcontractor should state that they are required to clean up after themselves each night. As the general contractor, you should be enforcing this requirement. A clean work site keeps everyone safe and happy. Be sure to have the roll-off dumpsters swapped out as they become full. 

5. Insurance: Collecting proof of insurance from your subs is a requirement for most permits and is part of the construction loan draw process with your lender. You need proof of a workman's compensation policy for their team, a general liability policy, and their basic automotive insurance policy. Additionally, you will need to insure the site with a general liability policy. Talk to your insurance agent about an umbrella policy to cover any extra issues--as well as a workman's compensation policy for you if you become injured on site. If your typical line of work is not construction, your medical policy may not cover your injuries. Knowing in advance what is covered and what is not can help avoid future surprises.


19 June 2018

Stop Mold in Its Tracks

Hi, I'm Carey Johnson. Mold can be more dangerous than you might realize. I learned that when my little girl started having asthma and allergy attacks inside the house. I couldn’t figure out what was causing it. We changed the filter in the air conditioner frequently, and we kept the house very clean. We couldn’t, however, figure out where the allergens were coming from. Finally, we discovered the mold that was growing on the floor of the attic – right above my daughter’s room! No wonder she was having breathing problems! Once we found it, we went right to work learning how to get rid of it for good. We ended up reconstructing the attic, and I learned that I enjoyed learning about construction.