A Personal Note from the team

What’s the story?

In this edition, we explore the differences between design-build and bid-build.

Dear Friends and Clients,

As we sail into the new year, it seems like spring has been around for a while after the winter we’ve had. There have been few days of work interrupted by the weather, which has been a welcome break from some very cold and snowy winters, like last year!

For many years, I have conducted seminars on the Design-Build process and shared the numerous benefits it provides to homeowners contemplating a remodeling project. As a homeowner, it’s important to understand how Design-Build and Bid-Build compare, so you don’t find yourself in trouble mid-project.

Design-Build Contractor

A design-build contractor provides both the project design and construction. Some contractors may act as designers, while others may collaborate with designers or architects, but a design-build contractor manages and controls the entire process from start to finish. They take your ideas, craft a design, work through pricing, and then complete the construction of your project.

Bid-Build Contractor

Previously, the common advice (not from any remodeling professional) was to solicit three bids. From a homeowner’s perspective, it seemed that by obtaining bids from three different companies, they could make an informed choice in selecting a contractor. Unfortunately, this is not a great idea.

Here’s why: How do homeowners know what is included in a bid, what construction methods are being used, or the differences between the proposals? The Bid-Build model can present several problems beyond those I mentioned earlier. A contractor in a “bid mentality” knows that the client will be seeking a lower number. I have heard numerous times that “we are not going to go with the lowest number,” yet, from experience, people often choose the lowest bid. To provide a low number, contractors use various tactics, such as forgetting to include certain items, hiring the cheapest subcontractors, using inferior materials, and employing substandard building techniques. These are just a few ways to be the “low bidder.”

Most of these issues only come to light after the project has started, which is the wrong time to discover them. At that point, you have little choice or recourse to make changes.

The Best Approach

In the Design-Build model, I recommend following these five tips to help select the right design-build contractor for you and your project.

Our Latest Adventures

We continue to have a wide range of exciting projects coming up in the next few months. They range from bathrooms, a second-floor roof raise, a kitchen addition, and a very complex three-car garage. It is enjoyable working through the many different projects and their associated details.

Get out the sunscreen and put some air into those bike tires. Have a great spring!

Until next month,

John and Marc

Related Posts