The primary contractor, also known as a general contractor, is responsible for the day-to-day oversight of construction sites. In addition to overseeing the construction site, he is responsible for managing trades and vendors. He communicates important information throughout the project and is the single point of contact for all parties involved. If you are working on a building project, a good general contractor is an essential component. In addition, a good one will communicate frequently with all parties, including the owner.
A GC should outline a payment schedule, based on the work schedule. The contractor may ask for a down payment to get started, while the rest is due upon delivery. The contractor should pay everyone involved in the construction and report to the homeowner on a regular schedule. A general contract will typically require daily or weekly communication. There are certain risks involved with paying a GC up front, so it is best to discuss payment plans with a general contractor before you start the project.
Costs should be clearly stated from the start. A general contractor’s fee should include a cost estimate and payment schedule. It should be clear how much a particular project will cost. In addition, a GC will have the authority to determine the timetable for completion and the overall quality of the work. However, it’s important to understand that a GC is not an employee of a construction company. As a result, contractors must be licensed to operate their business.
A general contractor will be able to see his first tier of subcontractors and the parties he contracts with directly. The real risk for a GC is with the parties he can’t see. These unseen parties include suppliers, sub-subs, and others on the project. As such, a GC’s payment chain must be monitored in order to avoid problems that might arise. So, how should a GC communicate with the homeowner?
In addition to being a contractor, a general contractor must be licensed. This means that he must be a legal entity, separate from other participants on the project. Furthermore, he must be insured. A licensed GC is a reliable, experienced, and trustworthy contractor. In California, he is allowed to inspect the books of a subcontractor he hires. The general contractor is liable for the work of subcontractors.
When hiring a GC, be sure to review the contract carefully. Many GCs will outline a payment schedule based on the length of the project. The first payment is a down payment, with the remainder due upon completion. Some GCs may request full payment before the work begins, but they are generally independent contractors who will be responsible for all work done. The contractor must be licensed and carry insurance. He must be bonded for his own business and for the projects he works on.