How to Start a General Contracting Business

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Start a general contracting business by taking on a role to facilitate functions of getting tasks done and working with employees and clients. Find out whether to belong to an association or union as a general contractor with information from a marketing and sales manager in this free video on business.

Part of the Video Series: Business & Customer Service Tips
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Video Transcript

Hi. My name is Mark, and we're going to look at how to start a general contracting business. At the end of the day, contracting, really we're talking about construction, the construction business. But it doesn't necessarily need to be construction. It can be many, many fields of work. The main issue here, if you're talking about general contracting, is that you are really, in loose terms, project managing. You are overseeing a set of tasks, objectives, and making sure that they are completed by an agreed period of time. So when you start a business like this, your role is to facilitate, to ensure that every single function that is required, whether it be building a house or performing a function- whatever it happens to be, is done to the agreement, to the letter of the agreement, so that both parties are happy. You get paid on time and the person receiving the service is satisfied with the function. So when you do this, you have to think about working with people, professionals, colleagues, whoever it happens to be, that know the element of task that is required to be done. So in other words, if you are building a bungalow for somebody, then you need to have a scaffolder, somebody who can lay the bricks, somebody who can help with the foundation, somebody who can help with the land; maybe even in terms of the purchasing of the land; somebody who can help set up the whole thing as required, as per specification. But your job, as a general contractor, is to oversee all functions. There are a number of factors that you need to consider, as a contractor. Do you belong to an association? Do you need to be a part of a member of an organization or authority? A part of a union, in fact? Do you have to fulfill certain obligations before you can actually promote yourself as a contractor? Then you have to think about if you are going into, let's say building construction, for example, the investment involved. We're talking about vehicles, talking about cement mixers. We're talking about, whether you purchase them or hire them, either which way there's a financial investment involved. And it's a risk, because you're the one who's basically taking that financial step on the basis of a contract. So you need to consider these things very, very carefully.

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