You would never knowingly enter into a disadvantageous contract. Once you sign your name on the dotted line, you’re responsible for ensuring that every part of the contract between you and the owner is upheld, so it’s imperative that you are diligent when handling contractual matters. One way to ensure that your best interests are always represented is by working with the Jacksonville construction lawyers at Cotney Construction Law. Our talented team of construction law experts understand the importance of construction contracts and can ensure that you are fully cognizant of every detail hidden away in your contract. In this two-part series, we will discuss vital information that should be included in every construction contract to avoid a potential legal issue.
As a contractor, you’re familiar with working against the clock to ensure that projects are completed on time. Before signing, ensure that the time frame for the project is stated clearly and agreed upon by both parties. The property owner will likely propose a strict timeline in the interest of capitalizing on their investment as soon as possible, but you must assert yourself — or hire one of our Jacksonville construction lawyers to assert your requested time frame for you. Never accept a job that you don’t think you can finish on time. Even if the requested deadline on the contract is unreasonable, once you sign, you’re bonded by law.
Pricing, Pricing Schemes, and the Terms of Payment
In addition to the project price, every contract must specify the payment terms. Not only must this include the amount due, but it must also include the type of payment being used (i.e., lump sum, rate per unit, monthly installments, etc.). When accepting monthly payments, choose a date of payment that is both sensible for you and the owner. On a similar note, you should include provisions for late payments and late work to protect you and the owner and minimize the opportunity for a dispute. Lastly, leave some wiggle room for changes in costs resulting from unexpected circumstances, change orders, and other issues that typically arise during the project timeline.
In the State of Florida, every contract must include the contractor’s license number. This information should be clearly detailed on the contract before either party signs. Failure to include your license number or lack of the proper license can result in significant fines.
For more information about the most vital information to include on your construction contracts, read part two.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.