Armchair Builder

10 More Reasons to Be an Owner-Builder

New Home Being Built

New Home Being Built

If I still haven’t convinced you to take control of your projects and become an owner-builder, you might want to check out the link below to an article from Smartmoney.  Mr. Kaplan expands on some of the things that I have shared with you at  There are many things to look out for when hiring a general contractor to work on your home.  You should always check references, insurance, and past work quality, and by all means get your contract reviewed by an attorney before signing.  Never pay a contractor or subcontractor prior to work beginning.  If they need to purchase materials, I would pay for those myself.  Then, if they fail to show up, you still have the materials.  I also like the idea of waiting thirty days after the job is finished before paying in full.  You should be able to write this into your agreement.  By waiting to make final payment, you still have some leverage if something were to go wrong.

I don’t want to give you the idea that all home builders or general contractors are bad…that would be unfair.  There are a lot of really good companies out there.  It’s the small percentage of bad ones that create the carnage and give us all a bad name.  Therefore, do your homework if you decide to go with one.  And don’t forget, you have the option of being in complete control as the owner-builder.  You will still have problems here and there, but at least you won’t be paying for them.  Do you have any horror stories of a general contractor you hired?  Please share with us.

Here’s the link to the article…

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2 Comments for 10 More Reasons to Be an Owner-Builder

Curtis | August 19, 2011 at 1:20 am

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how much house can i afford | August 23, 2011 at 11:02 pm

i love your blog, i have it in my rss reader and always like new things coming up from it.