A general contractor is someone who is responsible for overseeing a construction site. They handle the day-to-day management of not just the site, but all of the vendors, materials, and communication to the client. Essentially, a general contractor becomes a partner for the duration of the build or project. So, how do you know what to look for in a national commercial general contractor?
To start, look for a contractor who has the ability to work nationally. Essentially, this means that they should have all of the proper licensing needed for every state and be willing to show their compliance. At a minimum, they should carry the required licenses, bonding, and any insurance that the state or local governing bodies call for. As a note, the contractor’s insurance company should be able to verify their policy and their coverage.
It can be tricky to know what to look for in a national commercial general contractor, so be sure to check their portfolio. This will help determine if they are good fit for you and your project. The portfolio should have a varied body of work, and show completion of projects from pre-construction, until the last nail goes in. This is called design-build construction. Since you will be taking this contractor on as a partner for the entirety of your project, you can save time and money by using a design-build approach. When looking at their portfolio, ask questions about their management of the design, materials, labor, and any other relationships with sub-contractors or professionals such as architects or designers. This will give you a good indication of their design-build capabilities.
Next, be sure to check the reviews of general contractors prior to working together. Be sure that they are a company in good standing with their clients, and that the reviews are plentiful. Reviews not only give you an idea of customer satisfaction, but also what their working style is like. Are they good communicators? Do they run a clean and safe construction site? How did they handle unforeseen issues that arose during previous projects? These are just a few of the questions the reviews will help you answer, giving you a better understanding of whether they are a fit for you or not.
Lastly, look for a general contractor who has won accolades for their work. Do they have any awards from local chambers of commerce or other governing bodies? Have they received any national level awards from the likes of Cushman & Wakefield or Cassidy Turley? Also, check their financial ratings from Dun & Bradstreet and their CBRE Contractor Score. For reference the highest financial rating is a 3A1 and the highest CBRE score is 2500.
All of these things factor in to what to look for in a national commercial general contractor. Each of these components helps ensure that you will pick a contractor who is reliable, trustworthy, and will get the job done.
Care to read more about what makes a good national contractor? See BuildRite’s experience in this space.