General contractors are responsible for completing building projects according to a set schedule and budget. They often have experience with a variety of different trades, such as carpentry, electrical, plumbing, and roofing. They also have business skills and are usually licensed.
They are in charge of hiring and training subcontractors, obtaining all permits and licensing and managing the construction site. Their responsibilities include ensuring that a project meets the standards of an architect or other design professional and that it proceeds according to plans.
This is an essential role in any construction project, as they oversee all aspects of the work from beginning to end and ensure that a build goes according to plan. A good GC can prevent delays that can impact finance, weather timing, and overall completion time.
The duties of a GC are often quite similar to those of a project manager, but they do differ in terms of the overall structure of the contract. In a large construction firm, the GC may be responsible for a group of subcontractors who handle specific tasks on the job site. The GC is also in charge of keeping track of all payment and expenses and managing change orders and inspections to reduce the risk of significant losses for the owner.
A good GC is a professional who takes care of all the details of the project from beginning to end and keeps the clients informed of the progress at all times. Their communication skills must be top-notch to be effective in this role and they need to have a strong grasp of the industry standards and construction codes that apply to their specific job.
It is important to choose a general contractor who has been in the industry for a long time and whose reputation is solid. You can get a sense of their quality by checking out their references and credit history. You can also reach out to a few subcontractors to see who they work with and whether they have had any problems working with the contractor in the past.
Licensing and insurance are another important consideration for a GC. They must be licensed to do business in their state and carry insurance that protects the client against potential financial loss if the project goes sideways.
Their license will be issued by the local government and is typically valid for a certain number of years. They must also provide proof of liability insurance coverage and be able to show that they are in compliance with local building and safety regulations.
In addition to these requirements, many states have additional requirements, such as passing a GC exam or getting a trade license. These rules vary from state to state, so be sure to check them out before deciding on a GC.
Having an experienced and licensed general contractor is crucial for any building project. It is also helpful to have a general contractor who is familiar with the local area and has worked in the past on similar projects.