Gorman Built Billings MT
costly project management mistakes

Avoiding Costly Mistakes In DIY Construction

Avoiding Costly Mistakes In DIY Construction

In my extensive experience within the construction industry, a recurring and noteworthy misstep often unfolds as homeowners endeavor to self-manage their construction projects. Although construction isn’t akin to rocket science, the accumulation of errors over a project’s duration can lead to less-than-satisfactory or even catastrophic outcomes. It’s remarkable how frequently homeowners find themselves reaching out for assistance midway through their projects, a last-ditch effort to rectify a situation gone awry. Regrettably, in approximately 90% of these scenarios, the ensuing costs of error correction and project realignment prove financially burdensome, often causing a significant budget breach. What compounds this issue is that, had these homeowners initially engaged an experienced construction company, even if it meant a higher cost, they could have remained within budget while enjoying a professionally executed and aesthetically pleasing space.

Pitfalls Associated with self-managing construction projects:

1. Escalating Costs with Subcontractors: Experienced subcontractors often levy higher fees when engaged directly by homeowners. This premium is attributed to the additional supervision and clarification they require. Furthermore, subcontractors are well aware that mismanagement may lead to the issuance of change orders and the extension of project timelines, which could elevate overall costs by a substantial 15-20%.
2. Uncertainty Regarding Work Sequencing: Ambiguity surrounding the order of work can result in minor oversights with the potential to burgeon into significant issues down the line. For instance, neglecting to account for the finished flooring’s height during stair framing or failing to incorporate wood backers for a future glass shower door can lead to unforeseen complications.
construction permits
3. Cost Efficiency Begins with Effective Design: An effective project design holds the key to cost containment. The strategic placement of plumbing, electrical, and HVAC fixtures concerning utility access is pivotal. Without a meticulously considered design, budgetary escalation can manifest even before construction initiation.
The cost of mismanagement can vary substantially and poses a risk in all projects. Extensive experience in construction significantly mitigates the likelihood of mismanagement. In the event of a contractor’s error, it is their responsibility to rectify it, whereas homeowners are tasked with settling the financial burden arising from their own errors. Depending on the severity of the mismanagement, it has the potential to either make or break a project, or necessitate concessions during the final finishing stages following budget overruns during the rough-in phase of construction.
Furthermore, consideration should be given to the impact on stress levels and time investment. Homeowners frequently overestimate their proficiency in construction processes. It is essential to acknowledge that being “handy” represents the fundamental requirement in the construction trade. Beyond this, extensive experience and knowledge distinguish a proficient practitioner from an amateur, making one’s time more valuable within their area of expertise than attempting to economize by personally managing the project.

The merits of engaging experienced contractors for your project are multifaceted:

1. Reduced Stress: Experienced contractors possess the acumen to proficiently oversee projects, alleviating stress for homeowners. Oftentimes remodels are enough of an inconvenience that just by their nature they can put stress on homeowners not to mention if they are remodeling on their own. Furthermore a reputable construction company should be able to provide a comprehensive budget at the beginning of the project which in itself can reduce stress as the homeowners can plan ahead and be confident in how much the project will cost them.
2. Stages of a Construction Project: A construction project can be delineated into several stages:
  • Pre-construction: Involving design, permits, and planning.
  • Dirt work and foundation: Encompassing site preparation.
  • Framing and rough-in: Addressing structural and initial installations.
  • Insulation and drywall: Preparing spaces for finishing.
  • Finish work: Comprising carpentry, trim installation, and painting.
Though viewing a remodeling project through this framework may appear straightforward, it’s imperative to recognize the substantial amount of “unseen” work that doesn’t neatly align with a specific trade. This includes tasks such as flooring leveling, unforeseen issue resolution, guaranteeing unimpeded access for specialized trades, and managing requisite adjustments to ensure a seamless transition between project phases, culminating in a polished finish.
new construction portland oregon
3. The Value of General Contractors and Their Subs General contractors often maintain a curated list of subcontractors with whom they have established a longstanding rapport. This list is a testament to years of meticulous selection, trial, and error. The reputation of a subcontractor reflects directly on the general contractor, making this lineup a showcase of high-quality workmanship tested across various projects. Moreover, the synergy between general contractors and subcontractors, honed through numerous collaborations, translates into a mutual understanding of each other’s requirements for efficient and effective project execution. For homeowners, this translates to access to exceptionally skilled tradespeople at an exceptionally competitive price point. 4. The True Cost of Hiring a General Contractor In summary, while it’s common for general contractors to add a surcharge ranging from 15% to 25% to a project’s cost, the actual expenditure for homeowners often represents only a fraction of this figure, or in some cases, it results in cost savings. The synergies and efficiencies introduced by a general contractor and their experienced subcontractors not only ensure a smoother project but also contribute to the homeowner’s bottom line, making the investment in professional management a prudent choice.
Luca Gorman

Luca Gorman

Leave a Replay

Recent Posts

Follow Us

Weekly Tutorial

Sign up for our Newsletter

Click edit button to change this text. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit