Construction is becoming an expensive venture each year. With several factors coming into play, it’s difficult for anyone to predict the direction of the construction industry with any certainty. During such times, JNL Group becomes your ally. With expertise and experience, these professionals can help you save on any construction and its related projects like remodeling, offering you great service at reasonable rates.
Like most ventures, owners of construction companies emphasize profitability, the ultimate bottom line. While this is conventional, certain factors unrelated to construction can still hurt this bottom line. Fuel, for example, is not raw construction material. It doesn’t matter how much heavy machinery is used in construction work; it requires fuel. As such, fluctuations in fuel prices tend to inadvertently affect construction costs.
Reducing operation costs is therefore vital to the longevity of any construction venture.
Reducing costs can be done while factoring in the following.
Consider Material Alternatives While Eliminating Wastage
A significant part of any construction project involves the costs of acquiring the needed materials, with most projects apportioning at least a third of the budget toward buying construction materials. As such, builders and all contractors of a construction project need to carefully consider all options before buying the necessary materials.
Alternative materials like recycled steel, for example, offer the same benefits while commanding a lower price per unit compared to new steel. While this may seem like a good idea, some homeowners may not like it. This can make the planning phases of any construction project more challenging. Most such homeowners are not well conversant with the inner workings of the construction industry in general and technical construction details in particular. In such situations, the contractors have the unenviable task of convincing such homeowners to consider the alternative materials.
The use of relatively new synthetic materials like tension fabric has yet to pervade the construction industry. However, many have seen its benefits. One such benefit is its low cost. Even with the use of rebar and other such construction materials, the use of tension fabric tends to lower the overall construction costs.
Closely related to the use of alternative materials is the elimination of wastage. Every construction manager aims to ensure that no amount of construction material goes to waste. However, this is not always the case. Using prefabricated materials, for example, has the dual benefit of ensuring that just the right amounts of construction material are used while being budget-friendly.
The nature of nearly every construction project is that several parties are involved. There’s the consumer or homeowner, the main contractor, and several other specialists and inspection experts. All these parties have something to contribute. In such scenarios, many ideas are usually proposed. This can lead to the construction budget quickly spiraling out of control as more suggestions and adjustments are incorporated into the overall plan.
The lead contractor needs to ensure that all parties are on the same page. Clear communications mean that there are no unrealistic expectations, the main culprits of a construction budget ballooning out of control. Proper communications also mean accountability; it becomes easier to identify those responsible for wasteful spending and hold them accountable.
Eliminate Change Orders
Change orders refer to abrupt and last-minute adjustments to the construction plan. Several scenarios can lead to this. A final inspection, for example, may reveal certain shortcomings of the project, at least in the consumer’s mind. This can create upheaval, not only in the construction plan but also in the budget. Whether it’s such a flaw or a homeowner requesting last-minute changes, it is best to avoid them.
Alternatively, giving a grace period of, say, two weeks can help to significantly mitigate such scenarios. During such a period, the homeowner and all the relevant parties should inspect the physical progress of the construction project. The contractor should go into great detail about the materials used, the costs, and the expected date of completion. This gives everyone the chance to suggest any relevant changes. Such changes can quickly be integrated into the project. This ensures that costly suggestions are avoided toward the end of the project when the overall cost of such changes tends to be enormous. All this helps to keep costs down.
Renegotiate Sub-Contractor Pricing
Many construction projects, especially large ones, tend to drag on for months, sometimes even years. This can create some challenges. Several things may have changed from the time a construction project gets started to getting it halfway done. The price of certain construction materials, for example, may have increased. Unless all purchases were agreed upon from the beginning, this would mean significant tweaks to the budget. Sub-contractors may also demand higher wages due to, say, turbulence in the currency exchange markets.
This latter scenario is a double-edged sword. If such turbulence in the currency market is favorable, it means the homeowner doesn’t have to fork out significant sums. Unfavorable conditions will mean lowered currency value, meaning the homeowner forks out more money just to meet the agreed-upon rates. Contractors and homeowners should always be on the lookout for such scenarios, enabling them to cut down their costs.
Ultimately, cutting down construction costs boils down to intelligent project management, a fraction of luck, and astute execution of the overall plan.
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