I rarely see good contracts. Most people just make some stuff up without really thinking about what they are doing but as you grow you will find it necessary to create a contract template that would take a beating from the talented and “useful” legal minds currently knocking clueless contractors into the poor house. Check out the products page for a fully legal contract template. This article does not constitute legal advice. Consult an attorney for more information regarding contract law.
A contract is an agreement between two people. It should always be in written form to avoid confusion.
A contract can be changed when all parties agree through a contract addendum, amendment or in a construction contract a change order.
Signing a contract is called execution
A contract must be balanced, fair and drafted with the intention of not misleading either party.
It must name both parties along with their performance. Performance means what they agree to do within the contract.
A contract must meet all legal requirements of the jurisdiction in which it is subject.
Most contractors don’t build a significant marketing database but they should. Email marketing is a key strategy in keeping your business relevant in the minds of customers.
The obvious first step is creating a spreadsheet with customer emails. This takes consistent effort to retain this information. I always add customer emails to the contract themselves so the information doesn’t go missing after a few months.
Emailing your customers should be done annually or semiannually. I don’t recommend snail mail or any other form of mail because most people will trash it right away. But after they see your email they will do what everyone does with email. Leave it sitting their inbox as they go back to their lives. But fortunately when they remember they need a contractor they can quickly search their inbox for you recent email.
A business plan is an essential tool for a business owner. This business plan is as good for a fortune 500 company as it is for a sole proprietor. Not to get super cheesy but a business plan is more than just some document you file away.
A business plan is you guiding light.
The CSLB runs these sting operations from time to time where they bust people who are flagrantly advertising construction services without a license.
In some way I feel bad because these guys are just trying to work. But I lose that sympathy when they ask for 3/4 of the money up front. Either way it’s never smart to risk practicing without a license.
If you liked this the CSLB has ton of videos where they perform sting operations as well as other less exciting stuff.
How to set up a construction business
STEP1 Decide Upon Business Entity
There are several general business structures. You can read the states website here but I also give you my opinion below.
Online marketing has quickly dominated business world as a means of reaching your customers. But for some people it’s still a mystery. Often I hear of small businesses paying upwards of $5,000.00 dollars for a website that is basically useless.
So I decided to sell a basic affordable marketing service in my products area which will include the following;
-A very affordable 5 page website
-Website promotion tools such as like buttons & news feed section
-Listing the website so potential customers can find it through directories and inbound links
-A simple 1 page guide for the business owner on how to update and promote their website
Check out the products section to order your own website
Most contractor’s can’t imagine charging for estimates. After all nobody is charging right? Well that’s what I thought but I have been known to be wrong.
This is a very simple step by step instruction for filing a lien in California. The trick to filing a lien is making sure you follow all the steps from the very beginning so your paperwork is in order. Often in a construction dispute the contractor will wait until the customer wont pay before they begin to consider the legality of their paperwork. However the lien process is much simpler by having correct paperwork from the start.
When an established company is failing there is usually a few very good reasons. Often you have to consider if it’s worth saving and can it be saved before you invest time into the work. The irony in saving a company is that it’s usually an internal people problem rather than an external situation. However if you are reading this article you probably know all too well how internal people problems can lead a company to doom.