If you’re considering self-contracting your home build, but aren’t quite sure if it’s right for you, you’ll want to check out these tips our clients shared! Many of our clients have GC’ed their own builds, and we asked them for their top advice about self-contracting.
1) Do Your Research!
One of the biggest tips we got from our clients who acted as their own GC was to make sure you thoroughly research each step of the building process beforehand. Many clients found it easier to get sub-contractors to work with them if they had well rounded knowledge of what they needed. Spending time researching and connecting with others who self-contracted before you break ground will help you be aware of potential issues that may arise during your build and make sure you have a plan to handle them in advance.
2) Know Your Sub-Contractors.
Choosing and hiring sub-contractors can be a stressful process. There are a few key things you should keep in mind when choosing and working with your subs. Arguably the most important consideration: be vigilant in making sure that all subs provide proof of insurance and licensing. Not only will this let you know that you are working with a trusted professional, but also reduces your exposure to liability should any accidents take place on your job site.
Once you’ve found the subs you’d like to work with, make sure to build a relationship with them. Be present on the job site as much as possible. One of our clients advised “Don’t schedule your subs to work on top of each other. They will appreciate you for it.” Some clients even suggested bringing some coffee or lunch over for your sub-contractors occasionally, a kind deed we are sure anyone would appreciate!
3) Stay Organized
The key to any successful home build is organization. Our clients highly recommended keeping spreadsheets with all necessary info: materials, timeline, important dates or documents. Making sure everything is in order will keep your building process on track.
4) Be Flexible
No matter how meticulous your planning, there is always a chance that unexpected circumstances will arise during your build. As frustrating as this can be, our clients all agree that flexibility is key if you want to self-contract. One individual said “Have patience and expect delays”. There are definitely ways to hopefully avoid certain hang-ups, like ordering your appliances as early as possible, but should you reach a bump in the road, try to breathe.
5) Stick to a Budget
Your budget is one of the most important things to develop when building a home. Make sure to really dedicate time before you begin to outline exactly how much you are able to spend. Remember to include a buffer to account for any unexpected expenses along the way. Don’t be afraid to shop around for vendors as well – many of our clients explained that this helped them save a large amount of money on their build.