Important things to check on contract

topmanAugust 10, 2012

Hello all,

I remember seeing a thread awhile back about list of important things to watch out for on a contract with the builder but I can't seem to find it. So, I am starting a new thread.

For those of you who have been through the process or in the middle of it, can you please kindly share some tips on what are important to be included "black and white" on the builder contract? We just don't want to overlook anything before we sign it.

Any help will be appreciated, thanks!

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gaonmymind

Acouple things we did:

Specify a end date and do not allow any overage. If the builder goes over then a amendment needs to be made to the contract and any penalties or fees caued by delays are his dime. Of course if you cause delays, acts of God or valid supply issues then you leave room. But if he is mia from the job for a week here and there it is a big deal in his mind that he doesn't have built in cushion. A whole new set of documents and such have to be pulled together.

We are allowed to choose any fixtures we want and from whomever we want if his vendor does not price match including tax and shipping.

All materials and work is our property. So if he goes belly up halfway he has not right to claim anything.

Before any payments Lien releases and waiver must be signed by all subs, suppliers, and the GC AND notarized AND turned over to the owner and the bank..

No charge for change orders other than the actual cost of labors and materials. This can get tricky and the GC can always get an hidden fee through the sub. But in any case we are to get all original and true invoices to verify.

If anything is noted as "to code" find out what that is and if your builder will do extra. Like a center light or ceiling fan is not on all codes.

Specify his duties a s GC...such as daily supervision at the site, remedy of all issues that deviate from original plans with no cost to you, paying sppliers....ect.

All design, fixture placement ect...are the owners sole choice. Builder has no authority to substitute or make design issues without authorization from owner. Basically you make all design choices.

Any punch list items at the end will hold back a percentage of payment until remedied.

Also note that if a builder is slimy he will find his way around doing the right thing. You just want to protect yourself through every step so that you will be on top of any ongoing issues and aren't smacked by it at the end.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2012 at 7:33PM
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topman

Thank you! This is very helpful!

Do you have official/legal wordings in your past contract regarding the below items that you can share?

"Specify his duties a s GC...such as daily supervision at the site, remedy of all issues that deviate from original plans with no cost to you, paying sppliers....ect. "

"All materials and work is our property. So if he goes belly up halfway he has not right to claim anything. "

    Bookmark   August 13, 2012 at 12:31PM
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Mom23Es

I would advise paying for an attorney to review your contract. We have not had any issues arise yet, but we feel so much better knowing that we built up some legal protection just in case. We very nearly went with a different builder, but for style and grading reasons we selected our current builder. We found out later that our neighbor has had TONS of issues with their builder (the one we nearly went with) and is now spending lots of money on legal fees and inspections. It seems like it would be much better to put in the time and money beforehand.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2012 at 1:41PM
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