Tips for getting the best out of your General Contractor

It can get ugly fast, because construction projects assemble all the most sensitive factors in one scenario:

1. The stress of a construction schedule and mandate to get things done quickly (without sacrificing quality).

2. The likely inconvenience of being displaced, or not working at full capacity.

3. Interference of workers, questions, inspectors, material shipments, parking logistics possibly conflictingwith your daily routine or operations.

4. Actual payment for the work and the resulting budget impact.

5. Decisions to be made in selecting appearance, operation of equipment and facilities.

You get the picture….but it does not have to


A. Talk to your builder often, ask questions- stay involved.  These are builders, not mind readers. Most of the project intentions can be gleaned from plans and drawings, but some needs to be discussed. Nobody likes surprises.  Make sure you get it in writing -costs, schedule, details, etc. Nobody’s memory is perfect.

B.  Make and communicate decisions quickly after you have the necessary information.  Ask on a weekly basis what you should expect to be done by the end of the week. Monitor this activity.

C. Pay promptly or address any misgiving quickly that prevents prompt payment.

D. Stay organized…For example if you are ordering floor tile for the contractor to install. Make sure you have ordered it well before it needs to be installed and the quantities are correct.

E. Keep a sense of humor and your eye on the prize.  The GC is a team of many sub-contractors. Yes, it is like hearding cats and nailing jello to the wall. Roll with the punches and remember how awesome it will look when its done!

F. An offer of a cup of coffee on a rainy-cold morning or ice-cold drink on a hot summer afternoon reminds everyone to pull on the same end of the rope and will produce better results

We have more suggestions and more buttons to push…. please give us a call at Steven Secon Architect 914 674 2950.