Want To Be Your Own General Contractor?
With the help of the internet, DIY has become easier than ever. The rewards of fixing your own home seem great, as you can proudly proclaim “I built this with my own two hands.” Not just for your own personal state of being and feelings of accomplishment, but the promise of all the savings… Oh the money you may save by acting as your own general contractor… Or so the internet will have you believe.
Being your own General Contractor comes with great risks
So let’s revise your assumptions. If you know exactly what you are doing and if you have the time to supervise every aspect of your building project, the rewards can be great. But, if you are relying on the internet or your books to show you how to build your own home or how to tackle major structural repairs, then the risk you are taking on is equally as great (if not greater) than the promise of potential savings.
The price of reconstruction mistakes can be very costly
Before you start investing your time and money we will help you look at what is really required to succeed as your own GC.
First of all, if it was really so simple and cost effective to DIY, then we’d be out of a job and everyone would be running around constructing or reconstructing homes, saving money right and left. The truth is, establishing close relationships with specialty contractors, using quality materials that will last, never cutting corners, and knowing how to solve problems correctly the first time around takes time, dedication and cannot be learned overnight. On paper, doing it yourself may seem like the easiest and cheapest solution, but unless you are well organized, a quick learner, possess great financial and negotiation skills, plus know about building details and materials (and the correct implementation of such materials), then the chances of succeeding are slim to none, and the price of mistakes very costly.
Before you decide to take on the construction or reconstruction of your own home, go over this list to see if it is a realistic goal, or if you – like most – should hire a professional General Contractor to oversee your project properly:
- Do you know how to spot potential problems while looking at the building plans?
- Do you have a correct estimate of the cost of materials and labor? And are you able to negotiate and lock in a better deal?
- Do you have all the right permits and approvals? Are you sure?
- If you are hiring a crew, do you know how to manage the crew effectively?
- Have you sought any help from a third party specialist to conduct an inspection? Even if you’re going to take on the project yourself, you should always get a second opinion.
- How are you at tracking your accounts’ payable and receivable?
- Are you prepared to shoulder the responsibility when things go wrong? And something will go wrong!
The little you think you may save will quickly be irrelevant as you have to call back a professional general contractor to fix your amateur mistakes. Some mistakes may be more costly to fix than it would have been to hire a professional to do the job in the first place. Instead of spending your time trying to quickly learn the art of general contracting, spend your time researching local reconstruction companies. It is a much better use of your time, and will save you a lot of money and emotional distress.