Construction Contract Specifications

Specifications in a construction contract are intended to make sure to make sure the contractor gets exactly what he asked for.
Specifications in a construction contract are intended to make sure to make sure the contractor gets exactly what he asked for. (Image: ULTRA.F/Photodisc/Getty Images)

Specifications are a set of technical and workmanship requirements which have to be fulfilled in construction project. This requires planning to make sure a construction project is successfully completed. A construction contract is a complex and expensive undertaking, and prudence is important to avoid costly corrections when the project is done.

The Purpose of Specifications

Construction involves the building or erecting of infrastructure, usually on a large scale. Given the complexity of construction projects, planning is imperative for the successful execution of a project. Many factors such as the environmental impact, successful scheduling, logistics, budgeting and bidding have to be taken into account before a construction project can take off. A plan with specifications shows how a real construction project will look like when completed. Not only do the specifications provide details of the schedule and interior and exterior design, they give you, the contractor, the opportunity to have an input in the design.

Federal Contracts

If a contract requires drawings, they will be coordinated by the contractor to ensure accuracy, completeness and compliance with contract requirements. Federal contract specifications are usually in conformity with the specifications of the National Engineering Handbook, which was prepared for use in construction work administered by the National Resource Conservation Service (NRCS), establishes national standards in construction for federal projects. This includes material specifications and procedures for developing one-time-use contract and a bid schedule. If interim specifications are deployed in a project, the materials not covered by the national standard specifications can be used if the contract states so.

Bidding for a Contract

A construction contract consists of the general provisions, bid scheduled, specifications, drawings and, if necessary, wage rate decisions. The bid schedule lists the items of work for which direct payment will be made. It also shows the estimated quantities of work and the units of measurement. Construction contract specifications include the technical aspect of the contract. For example, the contract establishes the exact type of materials or equipment to be used. Drawings, diagrams, descriptive literature and test data by the builder explain in detail specific portions of the workmanship required in the contract.

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