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Question DetailsAsked on 11/29/2011

I have a contract that I am reviewing are there certain points to look for

I am reviewing a contract for a kitchen and bathroom remodel involving a complete gut are there certain things to look for in the contract

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3 Answers

Voted Best Answer

Play the "What-if" game.

What if the contractor doesn't show up? What does the contract say about default, deposits and arbitration/mediation, legal disputes?

What if the contractor takes longer? What does the contract say about start dates, completion dates, liquidated damages, liability?

What if something doesn't pass inspection?

What if something 'comes up' during construction that wasn't planned for? Check the contract for Change Orders, processes for revisions and addendums, etc.

What if a sub contractor for the general contractor approaches me with an unpaid invoice. Check the contract to see how payments will be made, and what protection you will have against additional bills.

What if I am planning on living in my home while this work is being done? What does the contract say about start time (5am? 9am?) and stop time. What does it say about daily clean-up? How many times will your building's water be shut-off and for what duration, etc.

What if the contractor asks me for 50% of the funds? What does the contract say about payment schedules?

Anything that is important to you should be discussed and added to the contract. (You want to keep the antique clawfoot tub? Add it to the contract, with an established value for replacement if it is damaged or thrown-out by accident).

You should be looking at a boiler-plate contract; one that has been published and used often by multiple contractors. The American Institute of Architects (AIA) has several contracts that have been reviewed, tested in court and are balanced to protect all parties. If the contract is not one published by a known publisher your concern is the contract may be slanted to the contractor's advantage instead of being fair to everyone.

A contract is just a statement of understanding and agreement. It can be changed as needed right up until you sign it. Ask lots of questions, if the answer isn't in the contract, add it. If you do not understand any part of the contract either have it reworded so you do understand it or have it removed; do not sign anything you do not fully understand and feel comfortable with. In a worst case scenario, the judge is going to review the contract and not really care about what you 'thought' was going to happen, or what you 'think you were told'.

Good luck!


Answered 8 years ago by Kenny Johnson


Review details and cost and discreption must to be understandable for you and go over each column before you sign it .

Answered 8 years ago by Serge Construction


Revie on Cabinets and quality (like all wood cabinets no MDF) Granite color , how many Sq/f.Discuss about extra work , clean up.
For more information (919)295-4160 Serge Co

Answered 8 years ago by Serge Construction


Any contractor for construction or improvement should cointain a few key points including a highly detailed scope of work, pricing, schedule of payments, and unknown possible fees/contingencies. It's important to have everything out in the open as a protection to both the consumer and the contractor. Upfront communication is key to a well run jobsite, and meeting customer expectations.

A highly detailed scope of work is important because this is how you know what you are truly buying. What product are being use? HOW are those products being installed? I see alot of guys who have very basic proposals for a couple reasons, either they want some ambiguity so they have reasonable doubt should something go wrong, or their salesmen don't know much about the products they are selling. The down side is a highly detailed scope of work can often get confusing to a lay-person.

Pricing is a no brainer- it's important so you know what you are going to pay.

A schedule of payments is important so you know how much and when you will need to write checks. How many complaints have you heard about contractors wanting money for a job that isn't even finsihed. It's best to break it up into phases or stages depending on the size of the job. Also keep in mind that the more money the contractor receives on the back end the higher the contractor's risk, thus the more money he might ask vs getting some money upfront.

Knowing what might go wrong, or in other words knowing what the potential unknowns may be is highly important. A true professional with experience in the products and services that he/she is promoting will be able to look at a job and know the potential unknowns. For example, I am a roofing contractor and rotten wood is always apotential unknown. I let my customers know this upfront. Sometimes there are other issues unique to each job, therefore my contracts not only include what IS being done, but also what is NOT being done.

Never accept any verbal revisions always ask them to be in writing. If they say something will be done a certain way, ask them to put it in writing. This is for your protection. Truth be told you may hire an honest cotnractor, such as myself, who is forgetful, such as myself. :) It's always good to be in writing so there can be no argument or confusion later on.


Answered 8 years ago by ReliableAmericanRoof

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