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When Should you Choose a General Contractor ?

As a full-service construction firm, we’re involved throughout the entire construction process of every project we’re involved in. But how to choose a general contractor – the people or firms responsible for building your vision and achieving the living space solutions you’ve expected.

General contractors select and oversee the various subcontractors who’ll be involved in the build stage of your project – electricians, plumbers and cabinetmakers, for example.

Typically, there are two points where you might engage a general contractor: early during the design process or immediately prior to construction.

The Design Phase

A general contractor can be hired early on in the design process based on a negotiated fee and percent mark-up, and become a member of the project team right from the start.

In this scenario, we work in tandem withdesigners and architects to prepare and evaluate different design options. The general contractor will help with pricing for particular items and assist with overall budget considerations – with the leverage they provide at this early stage helping keep the project on target.

Once a design option has been approved and the Construction Documents completed, the general contractor then solicits bids from competing subcontractors – aiming to obtain competitive rates across all disciplines.

The Construction Phase

A second option is to wait to engage a general contractor until closer to construction.

In this instance, you need to approach several general contractors once the Construction Documents are complete. You then solicit bids for the full scope of the work – and allow the different contractors to propose their fees and percent mark-ups together with the final costs of all the subcontractors.

Engaging a general contractor at this later stage is common – and working with Klasic Properties Services brings a certain transparency and efficiency of cost early on. But the overall project costs can vary due to potential construction market fluctuations, and this is the scenario where clients are happy to work with us as we provide a full construction management service. For example, with different subcontractors preparing competing bids the owner will totally rely on us to make comparisons between them, requiring a bit more legwork and coordination on our end before subcontractor selection can be finalized.


Whether and when you choose to engage a general contractor is ultimately up to you. We’re always willing to lend our expertise about the best approaches for your project and provide assistance to get you started.


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