How to Be Your Own General Contractor when Building Your Own Home

Posted By on March 31, 2012

building your own homeBuilding your own home can be an exciting project, as well as a scary project if you’re not prepared. It is important to understand the various issues that may arise during the process. Below are some items to consider.

1. Consider the time factor. When you act as general contractor, you will need to commit to a great deal of time to manage the building project. Because of this, you may need to share these responsibilities with qualified professionals.

2. Get organized. Outline the project to get a sense of what your vision is. This will be helpful to refer to as the project progresses. Prepare with the advice of professionals. For example, determine how best to link to necessary services such as utilities, water, septic or sewer and cable, prior to starting to build.

3. Obtain written estimates. Understand what the rates are for services. Rather than hourly fees focus on each entire job, from start to finish. This is very important, to avoid unpleasant surprises. Once an agreement is reached, before signing it, have it reviewed by a qualified lawyer to ensure that it meets with customary and legal standards. Do this with every contract that relates to the project.

4. Insure the job site, when building your own home. Have the necessary insurance policy covering the house while under construction.  Also, include uninstalled supplies located at the site.

5. Find licensed subcontractors. Check with your state to find the licensing agency. Then either check the pool of available contractors or ensure that the subcontractors chosen are licensed. Members of the Home Builders Association typically go through an application process for that association, so you know you can typically trust a member of your local Homebuilders Association.  Also, ensure that their schedules match yours. Be certain that the owners may be contacted at the end of your workday, to address any issues that may arise and may need to be resolved quickly.

6. Verify subcontractor insurance. Obtain proof of insurance for your records. Ensure that you verify that the insurance policy is in full force and effect. If insurance companies deal directly with you, they will usually contact you if the policy should be cancelled for any reason.  Also, request proof of workers compensation coverage for all subcontractor’s workers.

7. Get supplies from where the pros do. Usually, professional supply companies can provide more competitive pricing. Be aware that they sometime will not do business with nonprofessionals. At home centers, deal directly with the contractors’ division. Rather than stockpile supplies and materials, keep a minimum amount on the site. This can prevent over-buying and waste.

8. Be present at or verify all inspections. Rather than rely upon someone else’s opinion, view the work completed yourself. Also, ensure that you have copies of all documents related to the project that are signed off .

When building your own home, follow the above tips to ensure that your vision and interests are protected in the best way possible.  On the other hand if this feels like too large a burden, Potterhill Homes can help!  Give us a call to learn how we can build on your own lot.

 

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About the author

As the people behind Potterhill Homes, we have some pretty strong feelings about energy efficiency and green building. And we don't always agree! But we are commited to building a best homes we can and bringing you along on our journey to figure out exactly what that means! Thanks for checking out our site. My Google Profile+

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About Potterhill Homes

Cincinnati-based Potterhill Homes is a premier builder of affordable, environmentally friendly homes in Greater Cincinnati. Our homes are built with traditional Cincinnati architectural styles and are perfect for both urban infill and suburban development. To learn more about Potterhill Homes,visit www.potterhillhomes.com.


About the authors

As the people behind Potterhill Homes, we have some pretty strong feelings about energy efficiency and green building. And we don't always agree! But we are commited to building a best homes we can and bringing you along on our journey to figure out exactly what that means! Thanks for checking out our site. My Google Profile+