How to Pay to General Contractor

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Posted by: from Westmount
2/24/2020 at 10:08:35 AM

Hi every one,

We are planning to build a new house and in the process of searching for a general contractor.

Just wonder usually how people pay to the contractor? Fix amount or percentage based on the final cost? Can we buy some material by ourselves, like floor, tiles..... ? If we buy some by ourselves, how to pay the percentage or amount to the general contractor?

Thanks in advanced for your help!

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TrustedPros Inc. in Toronto
Date/Time2/24/2020 at 10:36:07 AM

Hi Yan,

We hope you find this discussion forum helpful.

If you wish to hire a contractor for your project, may we recommend submitting your post in the Get Free Estimates section of our website, by following this link: We will locate top-rated General Contractors that specialize in the services you require.

Kind regards,

TrustedPros Inc.

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Date/Time2/24/2020 at 11:07:59 AM

It's all depend to your agreement with the contractor from the beginning. Some they are giving you a fixed prices and allowances for the finishing that you should pay the extras in case of upgrades or some they will supply all the trades and supervise the project based on an agreed percentage on top of the costs.

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Date/Time2/24/2020 at 11:08:45 AM

When you hire a proper company or even interview companies for you project, they should outline their fee breakdown and payment schedule. Usually payments are tied throughout the project to building inspections.

The contractor will also purchase the materials. This is apart of their compensation (ex. Cost plus 20%). This is also beneficial to you as contractors get special pricing which is passed on to the client. Even with the cost + 20% model, you will still pay less than retail. The contractor also when needs to be purchased. You are paying for their expertise which also includes knowledge consumer products.

Hope that helped.


NovaWest Property Services Ltd

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John in Tiny
Date/Time2/24/2020 at 11:13:52 AM

best if you buy all materials yourself to know the prices and ask the GC to quote for work only. Also, ask the GC to break and price the work by categories: plumbing, electrical, etc. and detail work and material included.

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Date/Time2/24/2020 at 11:26:01 AM

I have done many homes with all kinds of contracts and the owner would never sign my contracts as it was written up by a lawyer and looks like the backside of an automobile purchase and mostly in favor of the contractor.

Cost plus has a bad name so I call it "time & materials" and it sounds better.

If the owner wants a written contract I always inform them one of us going to get screwed and I will make sure it is not me.

The best way is to put a fixed fee on the project which both parties agree and then a solid handshake. This only applies to residential construction and works great as we have been doing for last 40 years. My lawyer says that no contract is the best and deadliest for both parties.

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Date/Time2/24/2020 at 6:04:46 PM

There are a variety of options. I prefer to bill as we go and get paid on a weekly basis. As to material, you could buy your self, but may not be getting the best value. A contractor may suggest a product based on experience, quality or some other factor and also know the correct quantity to purchase. He/she may charge extra for this but it save you a good deal of time and "shopping around". Whatever you decide, have a contract specifying a payment schedule and what is involved as to material, returns, down time, etc.

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