Money Talks: How to Discuss Money When Negotiating With a Contractor

Your last construction project led to noise, disruption, and a bid which was already a bit higher than your budget. Halfway through the project, the contractor brought up an issue which would delay the project and bring up the cost. 

Now, you’re getting ready to remodel your office again as workers come back or open up a second medical practice and the last thing you want is a repeat of your last project. You want to make sure this project stays within your budget and has as few delays as possible. 

In order to make that happen, you have to understand how to talk about money when negotiating with a contractor. While no one likes to talk about money, here are three ways to make your money conversation with your commercial contractor easier and to avoid the headaches and stress of previous construction nightmares. 

Develop good rapport with your contractor

From the beginning, you want to treat your contractor with respect and set a good tone for your relationship with them. Your contractor is someone you want on your side throughout the process. Plus, they most likely want open communication and a respectful working relationship as much as you do. 

If you develop good rapport and they aren’t as responsive and communicative as you are, it might be a sign you hired the wrong contractor. A good contractor won’t be afraid to discuss your budget from the beginning in an honest, friendly way. 

Get money details in writing

Make sure to work out all money details–including budget–before working with a contractor. However, just working out the details isn’t always enough. It’s best to have those details in writing. 

Before you sign a contract, include any important money details or deadline in it. If you’re concerned about the contractor finishing the project in time or staying within a budget, don’t just talk about the deadline and budget; write it down in the contract!

Work with your contractor to cut down on costs

You’ve just received a bid from a new contractor you’re excited to work with…and then you see the price. It’s above your budget, but you still want to work with this contractor. Don’t be afraid to voice your concerns and see what can be done. 

Often, you could choose a different tile or paint color to cut down on costs. Instead of assuming the bid is the final offer, talk to the contractor about ways you can cut back on the quality or intensity of the project so that it fits in your budget. 

Money conversations can be awkward, but they don’t have to be with your contractor. When you’re open, honest, and respectful about your budget constraints, a contractor is likely to understand and work with you to accommodate your budget. 

Carlton Building Services in Hampton Roads Virginia

Carlton Building Services specializes in repairs, maintenance, renovations, remodelings and build-outs for a variety of clients in Hampton Roads, Virginia. We have years of experience handling projects in the retail, office, and healthcare space and would love to work with you on your next project!

To learn more about our services, check out past project highlights or contact Carlton Building Services to see how we can help with your next project. 

JP Carlton

J.P. Carlton

J.P. Carlton is the founder of Carlton Building Services, a Hampton Roads-based construction company.