we are building a home using a construction manager to diminish costs since we are able to do some of the leg work ourselves. we have a ceiling price that we can not afford to go over for the whole project (to be able to afford monthly mortgage with 1 working, 1 stay at home parent). any suggestions on how to keep us on track or limit our costs - we plan on doing things like tile, painting, and landscaping ourselves. we have connections to people in the trades who have agreed to do things on the side but we have to weigh their potential timeliness into any decision making. is there anywhere posted construction calendars on what should happen when in the process of building?
Greg, the 'Construction Manager' or 'Project Manager' concept is a good one to save money; however, it leaves you open to all kinds of liability. Your best protection is a very specific contract and additional liability insurance for you. Typically, the 'Manager' would have 'Open Books' so you can see just where your dollars go. He then adds his percentage (10 - 20%) for his commission. That's why the contract needs to be specific as to who does what, etc. For example, who is responsible for Workmans Comp should anyone be hurt on the job? That said, we are planning on using a 'Project Manager' on our new home later this year. If you are into computers, MicroSoft has a program called 'Project' that will allow you to keep a schedule. You really need to have a sit-down with all the trademen and work up the schedule. For example, the electrician may want to come in before the heating/cooling folks but they may contest that. That's where you and your 'Manager' need to make some of the many decisions. Also, look around and get several bids on everything. The 'Manager' should be able to use his contacts to get low bids before he adds his percentage. In some cases you may be able to beat that and your ability to use your bid should be spelled out in the contract. Good Luck.
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