Do-it-yourself renovating not only helps you save money, but it can also be extremely rewarding as you see the excellent results of your own labor.

Being Your Own General Contractor: Pros & Cons

The Pros and Cons of Running Your Own General Contractor Business

Many home remodeling projects can be completed with a do-it-yourself approach. Because of valuable insights and the availability of new do-it-yourself building materials, homeowners can now successfully tackle many heavy, complex projects that were typically reserved only for contractors and specialists, such as floor installation, wall removal, and window repair. Do-it-yourself renovating not only helps you save money, but it can also be extremely rewarding as you see the excellent results of your own labor.

How far does the do-it-yourself mentality extend to large-scale jobs, such as acting as your own general contractor? Though it is more about people management than it is about grabbing a hammer or saw, it could be one of the most difficult and time-consuming home renovation tasks of all.

Pros

  1. Spending Less
  2. Increased Control
  3. Legal Concerns
  4. Building a Contact List

Spending Less

Along with the enjoyment of tackling challenges and opportunities, the prospect of cutting costs on home renovation is a major motivator for much do-it-yourself activity. When you carry out specific do-it-yourself activities, you can occasionally save quite a reasonable amount of money. However, the amount of cash you can save by acting as your own general contractor can be astounding. Using a typical 20% contractor's commission for a $200,000 major room addition, you can save $40,000 by acting as your own contractor. The money you save can be put toward higher-end materials for your home, additional remodels and repairs, or even other necessities such as automobiles, weekend getaways, and educational expenses.

Increase Control

When you employ a general contractor, you will always lose some degree of control, no matter how much the general contractor intends or pledges to follow your goals. Even in the finest contractor-client relationship, some information is lost in translation. By acting as your own contractor, you have complete control over the project from start to completion.

Legal Concerns

An operator is a term used in several locations to describe a homeowner who acts as the general contractor on their own property. This operator is responsible for all of the same things that a general contractor would do: state and federal taxes, worker's compensation, and other legal duties.

Building a Contact List

By working effectively as your own contractor, you will amass a contact list of organizations and individuals who may assist you with future jobs such as installing flooring or window frames, repainting, hanging drywall, or gardening. After acting as a general contractor for a big renovation job, a homeowner rarely has to look for professionals to accomplish comparable tasks in the future. When you need to find more specialists, having established ties with a group of subcontractors might lead to even more recommendations. For example, your drywall contractor may know of a reliable home painter.

The Drawbacks of Being Your Own Contractor

There are also some significant challenges in taking on the role of general contractor for a large project. The issues can be severe enough that some homeowners swear they would never attempt such work again without the assistance of a contractor.

Cons

  1. Significant Responsibilities
  2. There is no expert assistance.
  3. Immense Learning Curve
  4. Time Management Issues
  5. Dealing with it on your own

Significant Responsibilities

When you work as a general contractor, you are accountable for everything in the project. This involves planning, scheduling, managing employees, and paying for supplies. Whatever happens, whether good or negative, it is your obligation to see that it is remedied as soon as possible.

There is no expert assistance

Even though you will have total control over the whole procedure, there will be no expert supervision. This is why, especially if it's your first time, you should know what you're doing before embarking on such a project. If you are unskilled or know little about house renovation, you might consider hiring professionals instead.

Immense Learning Curve

Contractors appear to do nothing other than schedule tradesmen. Even if that were true, their experience in scheduling and overseeing personnel would be priceless. Contractors have a variety of experience, which is typically earned via hard work. Rather than beginning from zero, you may invest in tens of years of expertise for the price of the contractor's fee. A general contractor with a large network of masonry professionals, carpenters, electricians, plumbers, HVAC contractors, landscapers, and house painters is more valuable than you may think. Because of professional ties, you may find it considerably more difficult (and sometimes more expensive) to engage the same subcontractors that readily work with known general contractors. The general contractor may also have access to low-cost building supplies and appliances that you do not. The general contractor is also responsible for the disposal of demolition materials, which you will have to organize if you take on the function of the general contractor yourself.

Time Management Issues

Being in charge of a project necessitates good time management and staying on top of everything. A hectic schedule also makes it harder to accomplish and operate your home remodeling project on a constant basis. This is why, if you don't want to spend too much time on the project or simply don't have it, you should avoid becoming a general contractor. The same is true for manual invoicing, which can have a significant impact on your time management. Managing several projects and clients can be difficult, especially if you need to send out bulk invoices to various merchants, workers, or your own workforce. You might want to look into digital invoicing for faster and more dependable invoice issuing at the touch of a button. You can check Blinksale Invoicing 

Dealing with it on your own

Being in charge of your home renovation needs ongoing communication with all parties involved in the process. You will be responsible for managing all of the staff and coordinating their work so that it does not overlap. Furthermore, you will need to describe your project goal to everyone involved, from your contractors to your friends and family.

When Is It Time to Be Your Own General Contractor?

Serving as your own general contractor on a large renovation or construction project may save you tens of thousands of dollars. However, these savings come at a significant cost in terms of stress, time management, and maybe even job quality. Take on this task only if you are confident in your talents and have properly considered the advantages and downsides. Acting as your own contractor is feasible if you have the time to commit to studying how the task is done. Furthermore, the project itself cannot be rushed.

Conclusion

While working as a general contractor is not for the faint of heart, it can be a lot of fun if you are willing to acquire new skills and manage your project. It will surely be a valuable and unforgettable experience if you are willing to commit that much of your time and attention. Furthermore, you will be able to thoroughly personalize your home renovation while also saving money. Just be sure to pick your subcontractors wisely so you don't wind up with a subpar product or a terrible contractor. Good luck with your study!

Ready to get paid faster and grow your business?

Try for free