Whether you're performing renovations or painting a house, contracting can be a great way to do what you love for a living. However, it is a bit of a risky business because not every client is the same.
So what sort of things should you be keeping in mind when contracting?
There are lots of different types of client and they all act in different ways. Thankfully, though, there seem to be different stereotypes that still hold true of real life which you can ponder as you work. For example, there are some clients who will try to control every aspect of the renovations, some who won't know a thing about what's going on, some who think they know how to do your job but don't and plenty more. If you can figure out who you are working for then you'll know how to deal with them.
Problems are not always with the client. There are some contractors out there who handle clients poorly, making them angry or frustrated. If they complain it will seem like the client is being difficult, when in actual fact it is the contractor. To ensure this isn't you, always communicate regularly, even if just through email, keep the client up-to-date on the project and what the next steps are, and be respectful with both time and money.
Some clients won't pay up or will be slow to do so. To account for this possibility, always make sure a contract is signed before any work is commenced and that it explicitly states what the payment terms are. If you're getting paid throughout the project and the money stops, stop the work. No pay, no work – it's only fair. If you don't get paid after the job, never give up chasing. If the clients don't respond to you, don't be afraid to take it further otherwise you won't get what you earned.
November 18, 2014
The Resene Trade Blog
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