What To Expect From A General Construction Contract

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Many people will turn to general construction services providers at some point to build homes and other structures. What should you expect when you enter a general construction contract, though? These five items will be high on the list.


Foremost, the contractor will act as a unifying force. Imagine the various things that are hiding inside any building's walls. There are going to be water and sewer pipes, electrical lines, insulation, and vents. Each of those things will get there because a licensed professional will install them.

Someone has to contact and coordinate all of these people. This is where your main contractor enters the picture. They can identify suitable subcontractors and make arrangements for them to handle the various segments of work on a build.


With so many folks involved with a general construction effort, sequencing becomes a major problem. You don't want the plumber to show up before someone has framed the house and put studs in the walls, for example. Otherwise, it's going to be hard to attach the installed pipes to anything.

A contractor needs to be good at sequencing. This means understanding how one subcontractor has to complete one set of tasks before another can jump in and do their work. More importantly, they should be able to sequence the work efficiently so there aren't long waits in between. No one wants to wait to put up the drywall because the electrician hasn't finished.


Many jobs will also require purchasing materials, taking delivery, and staging them. Also, the sequencing of materials deliveries can significantly affect the work of the attached contractors. You don't want a pile of timber sitting around while you pour the foundation. However, you also need to get it there in time for framing. It is a general construction contractor's job to sort these things out.

Permits, Compliance, and Reports

The contractor should also be able to handle all permitting and compliance issues. These can vary immensely between localities. Some cities and states have strict rules, and they may even require reports on how you've met their requirements. A contractor should coordinate all compliance-related efforts to ensure work can start on time and without incurring any penalties or stoppages.


Ultimately, you want to know that your general construction job was a success. This means going through lists to verify that everything went according to plan. As necessary, the contractor should also make corrections and document everything before finalizing the work.