Change Orders: nothing to worry about if you've got a good Owner's Rep

Post written by David Stewart.

So, you’ve started work on your dream home, the most beautiful, stylish and elegant home that ever was built.   Everything is going to plan when, out of the blue and cloudless sky, crashes  

  • An error in or omission from the contract documents
  • Unforeseeable job site conditions such as rock, expansive soil, unrecorded utility lines or similar circumstances
  • Changes in the requirements of a regulatory agency, such as revisions in building codes, fire, safety or health regulations
  • Changes in specified work due to the unavailability of specified materials.

Or you simply change your mind about the kitchen tiles.

Don’t get mad. Get a change order.

Change orders are authorizations for the contractor to depart from the requirements of the construction documents as prepared by the architect and as recognized by the construction contract.

But homeowner beware!

Change orders usually result in a change in the contract amount and time – usually more cost and more time and Contractors may take advantage of a change request to improve contract profitability.  If you have an Owner’s Rep, you significantly lower your chances of being charged more for changed work than it would have cost if the change were incorporated at the get go and bid for competitively.

The truth is that even the most straight-forward project is likely to require change orders.  They are as common as concrete in the construction process and nothing to panic over if you’ve got a good rep in your corner.

Photo credit: get down / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND

Posted: Tue, 20 Nov 2012