What a Construction Schedule Should Do

A carefully prepared construction project is an important tool for ensuring its successful and timely completion. The guys over at Southwest Appliance Repair always say that using a construction project enables the contractor to use the available resources effectively. Unfortunately, some contractors have poorly made construction schedules.

To be effective, a construction schedule should have all pertinent information. It should also ensure that this information is communicated to all stakeholders. Here is what your construction schedule should do:

Enhance timely completion of the construction project

A construction schedule should enable the contractor and workers to use the available resources efficiently to complete the project in a timely manner. With a construction schedule, the project can be completed without ruining quality, or compromising integrity or safety.

Consider Restraints Imposed by the Client

A properly made construction schedule should consider restraints that some clients impose. These include interfacing with the other contractors, dates of accessing the work areas, working around and in the existing facilities as well as the information available.

Take into Account Adverse Weather Conditions

A well prepared construction schedule should allow room for adverse weather conditions that can be experienced during a construction project. Unfavorable weather can reduce productivity or hinder timely completion of a construction project.

Set the Completion Date

The purpose of a construction schedule is to ensure that a construction project is completed within the set timeframe. Therefore, an effective schedule ensures that completion dates are met as the contractor committed to while signing the contract. The only exceptionis when changes are made during the project.

Have Approval of the Client

A construction project schedule should be presented to the client in writing. Once the client receives it, they should read through and approve or request changes. Without a schedule approved by the client, it’s difficult for a contractor to argue that delays were occasioned by late information, variations, time extension, or late access.

A construction project schedule is an important document. It influences timely and successful completion of a construction project.

How the Economy Affects Construction Companies

The role of construction companies involves managing building projects for both residential and commercial clients. A construction company can manage a single-family home construction project or even a large industrial complex. The economy affects the decisions of construction companies and families to invest in the real estate industry. And in turn, this affects demand patterns for the services that construction companies offer.

Although construction is a cyclical industry, small companies in the sector can take advantage of some counter-cyclical opportunities arising from a weak economy. Here are ways the economy can affect construction companies.

Strong Economy

A strong economy can raise an individual’s income. And this can encourage entrepreneurship. When revenues increase, a self-reinforcing rising demand cycle arises. People get more money to spend or invest in construction projects. Thus, construction companies sign contracts with people that want to build residential and commercial properties. The increasing demand for the services of construction companies brings them more profits.

Weak Economy

A weak economy has the opposite effect on the construction industry. When the economy is weak, people have lower incomes. And lower payments make people spend conservatively with limited investments. What’s more, a weak economy doesn’t encourage entrepreneurship. People and companies do not have money to invest in construction projects when the economy is weak. And for this reason, construction companies do not sign contracts. Thus, their income decreases.

Economic Trends

Some companies can’t ignore economic trends when planning their operations. That’s because their ability to continue operating depends on economic trends. If a small construction company goes for months or even a year without signing a contract, it might run out of business. Thus, it has to monitor economic trends that influence decisions and operations.

Like most sectors, a strong or weak economy affects construction companies in different ways. Players in the construction industry must, therefore, monitor economic trends and plan their operations accordingly.

Important Things to Consider Before You Build a House

Building a new house is an exciting experience. It’s also a major investment. As such, you want to make sure that everything is done properly. The process of building a home should be an enjoyable adventure. And, this can only be possible if you make focused, smart building decisions. Here are some of the things that you should consider before you build a house.

Family Size 

The size of your family is one of the most important factors to consider before you build a new home. That’s because your family size should determine the size of the house that you build. Ideally, your house should be spacious enough to accommodate your family. 


If you don’t consider your lifestyle, you can choose the wrong house design. Therefore, think about your current lifestyle and how it’s likely to change. For instance, do you host guests regularly? Do you want to engage in a certain hobby or have a trophy room? These are some of the things that should guide you when designing and building your home. 


You can only build a house that you can afford. Therefore, consider your finances to make wise decisions. For instance, decide whether you will take a mortgage or use your savings to fund your construction project. Also, decide on the loan that can work best for you. Talk to a contractor about the cost of your building project to make the right budget decisions. 


The builder that you choose will play a crucial role in determining how your project runs and the final results. Therefore, take the time to choose the right builder. Don’t fear interviewing several builders to identify a professional that you’re comfortable working with. 

Possible Hiccups

You’re bound to encounter challenges when building a house. Therefore, think about possible challenges and the best ways to overcome them. A professional builder will guide you accordingly whenever challenges arise. That’s why you should be careful when choosing a contractor for your building project.

These are some of the most important things to consider before you build a house. It’s also crucial to consider the location to make appropriate logistical and construction plans.

How to Boost Operational Profitability during Construction

A contractor can increase efficiency and profitability by focusing on several important things. To be successful, a construction company should boost operational profitability. This can be done by streamlining operations and ensuring that the latest technologies are used. Maximizing the productivity of the staff and ensuring the ultimate satisfaction of every client is also important. Here are some of the best ways to boost operational profitability during construction. 

Proper Resource Planning 

One of the major ways via which operational profitability is reduced during construction is through wastes. To avoid this, a contractor or project manager should ensure that the available resources are utilized properly. For instance, duplication of the roles of workers should be eliminated by providing real-time and accurate information to the workers. This will enhance the efficiency of workers. 

Relationship Management 

Effective use of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) can enhance the utilization of information technology and business strategy in the provision of real-time intelligence in every field. A construction business or company should use CRM to streamline activities and optimize marketing. This will enhance relationships with clients and their satisfaction. 

Standardizing Operations 

Efficiency at the job site can be achieved by ensuring proper coordination and planning. The foreman, project manager, and job site teams should participate in project planning. They should also have a way of coordinating operations. This may include daily meetings to keep every involved party updated on the project progress. This will also enhance subcontractors’ scheduling and timely delivery of the necessary materials. 

Equipment and Costs Tracking and Monitoring 

The cost of every worker and equipment should be recorded, analyzed, and tracked. This helps in determining the costs of every job, payroll, and equipment depreciation. It also provides important data that can be used to enhance operational profitability. Overhead costs, equipment costs, and burden costs should be updated continuously to ensure precision and accuracy when bidding for future projects. 

A construction company can leverage operational costs to make sure that maximum profits are attained. To achieve this, targeted marketing, efficient systems, and standardized operations are required. Following these guidelines will enhance operational profitability in every construction project.

Custom Home Builder Versus a General Contractor- Who is better?

When you decide to build a new home, the question that will follow is whether to hire a custom home builder or a general contractor. A home construction project is a costly investment. It’s therefore, important to know the difference between a custom home builder and a general contractor to make a wise decision. 

A Custom Home Builder 

This is a professional that completes an entire housing project alone. A home builder works with a crew that helps them in doing different job types in the construction project. The professional sticks to the project from the beginning to the end. A home builder gives subcontractors only jobs that require special licenses. These may include electrical and plumbing works. And, you will be billed on a time basis, per material, or the entire project. 

A General Contractor 

This is a professional that organizes various resources while doing the renovation or construction work. A general contractor may not be a specialist in home improvement or construction. As such, they hire different experts to complete various tasks of the project. You will be billed a price that is slightly higher than the amount they subcontract for the job to make a profit. 

Who Is Better? 

A custom home builder is the best option for most people because they stick to the project from the beginning to the end. They also do not subcontract more work as a general contractor. That means they are more in control of the quality. What’s more, a contractor will charge you more for subcontracted work to safeguard their profit. Thus, working with them can cost you more. 

Nevertheless, the difference between a custom home builder and a general contractor is narrowing down. Therefore, the best way to get a better deal when working with a custom home builder or a general contractor is to check the past work to ensure that you get quality results. 

Projects than Need Building Permits

Once you decide to build a new house or undertake an improvement project, you can spend more time considering color, style, and the need for an architect or contractor. However, you forget that you need to determine whether a building permit is necessary. A building permit is a written authorization that a county or city issues for a construction project. 

Permits are necessities for most remodeling or construction projects. The purpose of acquiring a permit is to ensure work safety and compliance with construction, zoning, and building codes. The exact process of building and acquiring permits vary from one place to another. 

Projects that Require Permits 

Projects that alter the use or structure of a building as well as those with the potential to make the working conditions unsafe require permit. Examples of projects that require permit include:  

  • Removing or adding walls 
  • Changing the purpose of a room like converting your garage into a living room. 
  • Changing your house piping or plumbing system. 
  • Re-roofing your house 
  • Demolishing part of the house 

Projects that Do Not Require Building Permits 

There are many home improvement projects that you can do without a building permit. Examples of such projects include: 

  • Adding cabinets in the kitchen 
  • Repainting the house 
  • Replacing some appliances in the kitchen 
  • Installing coverings on the floor 
  • Erecting a fence 

Apart from getting a building permit, you may need permits for special permits depending on your project scope. For instance, you may need mechanical, plumbing or electrical permit. If you want to install a lawn sprinkler underground the lawn, you may need a plumbing permit. You should also acquire a mechanical permit when installing the central air conditioner. 

The best way to determine if you need a permit for your construction project is to consult your permit or city building office. You can also find useful information on projects that need building permits online. 

Useful Tips for Getting the Best Deal on Custom Home Construction

Building a new home is a dream of many people. However, custom home construction can quickly turn into your worst nightmare if you don’t conduct proper research and plan well. Currently, there are countless options to consider when building a new home. This means you can easily overstretch your budget. Nevertheless, you can get the best deal on custom home construction if you try these tips.

Choose Your Home Contractor Carefully

Custom home construction can be expensive and stressful. It’s therefore important that you choose a builder that you can trust. Don’t work with the first contractor that you come across just because they have a charming personality. Instead, choose an honest and transparent builder that will explain everything to you. An honest contractor will be ready to have a conversation with you on budget, subcontractors and mark-ups.

Define the Scope of the Work and Budget

Be detailed in your budget and plan. This will enable your contractor to avoid or prevent unforeseen expenses. For instance, make your fixtures allowances known to the contractor. Also let the home builder know expenses that are beyond your budget scope. This is very important because such expenses can dramatically alter your build’s bottom line.

Prepare for the Unexpected

Construction projects tend to go over the budget all the time. It’s therefore important to have a contingency cushion. Have 10 to 15% contingency for the budget as well as projected date of completion in the contract.

Conduct Some Research

Ask friends and relatives that have built custom homes recently about the costs of their projects. Know where they spent more and what didn’t fit in their budgets. Also compare prices of materials and fees that different contractors charge. Find out what people say about different custom home builders before you make your decision.

Follow these tips to get the best deal on custom home construction. Also pay attention to what happens at your construction site to ensure that things are done according to your specifications.…

Causes of Construction Projects Failure

For any contractor, a successful construction project is the one completed within the set budget and schedule. Clients are happy with completed projects and a contractor can walk away with clean profit. Essentially, a successful construction project is the one where both the contractor and the client win.

But, a failed construction project causes issues and conflict. It is associated with schedule delays and cost overruns. If a construction project is not managed properly, it leads to overstretching of the budget and extension of the completion deadline. Going over the set budget eats into the profit of the contractor in addition to causing conflicts. It also affects other projects because the equipment and workers of a contractor are tied up as they try to finish up the failed project.

So, what makes a construction project fail? Well, here are some of the major reasons why a construction project can fail.

Inadequate Planning

Poor or inadequate planning can cause poor execution. When more effort and time is spent on planning out a construction project, everybody is better off when getting the actual work underway. Therefore, start by reviewing and understanding the construction plan, specifications, client’s expectations, and work scope. Careful planning of a construction project entails working closely with the architect, client, suppliers and subcontractors in order to complete construction project’s milestones within the set schedules.

Poor or Lack of Communication

Effective communication is important in ensuring successful completion of a construction project. Poor or lack of communication causes costly rework, accidents, delays and eventually an unhappy client. Ensuring that everyone is always updated on the client’s needs, schedules, and progress of the project is important in preventing problems that can lead to failure. Therefore, have a communication plan with a designated communication point to ensure that every stakeholder is constantly updated on what needs to be done.

Changes in the Scope of the Project

Continuous changes or expansion of the initial scope of the project beyond the initial plan can also cause failure of the project. This can be due to a poor definition of the scope, incomplete specifications and plans, mismanagement of changes, and poor communication of the changes.

Productivity Issues

Delays in the completion of a construction project can be due to natural disasters that are uncontrollable by the involved parties. For instance, unfavorable weather can make completion of a construction project on schedule challenging. Shortage of labor or having few workers available can also lead to delays in completion of a construction project.

These are some of the factors that can lead to the failure of a construction project. Nevertheless, a good contractor can overcome these challenges with quick thinking, careful planning, and effective decision making to ensure successful completion of a construction project.…

Red Flags to Make You Fire a Contractor Immediately

Red Flags to Make You Fire a Contractor Immediately

You hire a contractor because they seem competent and civilized. However, working with a contractor that seems competent at first can turn out to be a nightmare. That’s because they are not whom they pretend to be. But, how do you know that you should fire a contractor? Here are some of the red flags to make you fire a contractor immediately.

Too Much Upfront Payment Request

Obviously, a contractor should not ask you to pay an unreasonable amount of money upfront.  A contractor needs some money to start working on your project. However, asking you to pay over 15% upfront is a red flag. In some cases, a contractor can ask up to 33% upfront payment. But, a good contractor has sufficient credit to cater for upfront costs. If the contractor doesn’t have enough credit, it’s possible that they messed up in their previous job. Thus, their credits may have been revoked. This is not a good contractor.

Strange Hours Appointments

Visit the job site at 10am, 2pm, and Monday morning. How does their jobsite look like? If the jobsite is always quiet, re-evaluate the contractor. A good contractor sets their working hours. These hours determine the efficiency with which your project will be completed. It also reflects the overall professionalism of a contractor. If you notice that the contractor is absent most of the times when you visit your jobsite, ask them about it and fire them if you don’t get a satisfying answer.

Uses Drugs on the Job

What a contractor does at night on Fridays is not your business. However, if a contractor comes to your jobsite drunk or high on drugs is your business. Don’t tolerate a contractor that uses drugs or alcohol at your construction site.

Poor Communication Skills

You want to be updated on the progress of your construction project. Therefore, a contractor should communicate with you efficiently. For instance, if a contractor finds your missed call, they should call you back. If a contractor has vague communication, they are ill tempered, and not understanding your need, it means they won’t deliver your desired results. Therefore, consider firing them.

In addition to these red flags, fire a contractor if they don’t want to work with a written contract or follow the guidelines of the contract. Also fire a contractor that tries to steal building materials from you.

Check out this website for last hire for contractors.

Things to consider when you hire a construction contractor

When you are hiring a construction contractor, there are a couple of things that you should consider. This is to make sure that you are going to hire the best contractor and that your construction project is going to be a success. These are the most important things to remember. Things that many are forgetting about.

The contractors need to be local

People are forgetting about this fact. That it is better to hire a contractor that is local. This is just much easier to get hold of the contractors if you need to. And, they can’t just disappear without you knowing where to find them.

It is just so much better to use a construction contractor that is local and that you can visit at their store or office.

The warranty that they are giving on the construction

Yes, even building projects should come with a warranty. And, for sure not just for a month or two. You are paying a lot of money for the building project. Therefore, you should make sure that you are getting a warranty of at least 2 years.

If the quality of the building was low, you will only see it after a couple of months. And, this is why you should make sure that you are going to get a good warranty from the contractor.

They need to have their own construction insurance

This is really something important that people forget about. The fact that the need to have their own construction insurance. If a worker is getting injured during the project, and while they are working in your home or office, you are reliable for their safety if they don’t have insurance.

This is why it is important to make sure that they have construction insurance and that it is updated and paid in full.

Always have a contract between you and the contractor

If a contractor is saying that you don’t need to have a contract between the two of you, you should run away, really fast. This is the most important part of using a construction contractor. The signed contract between the two of you. There the amount that he estimated should be on, and the time estimate of the whole project.

The moment that you consider these things about construction, you will not have any problems while you are building a property. These things are making it a great experience to build and you will get the results you were looking for. In fact, these are the top things that you should know about construction before you can start looking for a contractor.