By Gene and Katie Hamilton
A written contract with a contractor is an agreement between a homeowner and the contractor to perform work and services in a certain amount of time, for a specific dollar amount and using specific materials. Before you sign a contract with a contractor take a look at the information specified in the agreement. It should include these features and details for a remodeling project.
- Contractor’s name, address, telephone, cell and pager numbers and license information
- Homeowner’s name, address, home and business telephone and cell numbers, and location of the job site
- Detailed job description of work to be completed
- Description of how the surrounding area will be protected from the work area
- Description of daily and end-of-job cleanup work to be completed
- Itemized list of all material used naming the brand, model number, size, color, style and other information about the material
- Copies of drawings and specifications
- Starting and completion dates of work
- Time of day that workers are expected to arrive and leave the site
- Specifications regarding the work performed will meet or exceed the building code
- Responsibility of who will pay for and obtain any required building permits
- Financial terms clearly stated and including the total price, payment schedule with penalty for cancellation or incentive for completing the job before deadline
- Required homeowner’s signature for approval before work begins
- Procedure for implementing change orders when work is underway
- Right of homeowner to cancel the contract within three days of signing it
- Clause about binding arbitration that allows both homeowner and contractor to resolve a dispute without involving lawyers
- Warranty covering materials and workmanship for a minimum of one year.
- Commitment about homeowner not being liable for a third party claim for nonpayment of materials or subcontractors.
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