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Home renovations are long-drawn, well-planned operations, often taking months on end. Understanding the roles of different people involved in this process is important for homeowners, especially in terms of accountability. While most of us know the role general contractors play in the scheme of things, not many of us are familiar with subcontractors and how they function. This quick read will help in understanding the role of subcontractors in home renovations.
Who are subcontractors?
A contractor is a business person who liaises with customers and undertakes contracts for construction and renovation projects. A contractor takes into account the entire scope of the project, the costs, the amount of time required to complete it, the raw materials that need to be procured, permissions and licenses required for the project, and more.
General contractors hire subcontractors to perform specific tasks in the renovation and construction process.
Let us, for example, assume a renovation project is pegged to last for three months. A general contractor will be responsible for the planning and execution of the entire project and will be the customer’s point of contact until the project is completed to the satisfaction of the customer. Contractors get paid in installments during the duration of the project.
On the other hand, a subcontractor that the contractor hires is responsible only for a part of the renovation. Once the subcontractor has finished his job, he’ll get paid by the contractor and move on to the next job.
So while a contractor needs to spend time and effort meeting with multiple prospective customers and making pitches in order to land projects, a subcontractor needs only to network with multiple general contractors to bring home the bacon.
Subcontractors are generally required to have trade licenses to operate.
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What are the different types of contractors?
It is estimated that building a house from scratch will take an average of 22 subcontractors. Let’s find out what the different types of subcontractors are.
- The installation of home security systems is handled by professional subcontractors who are aware of the best places security systems ought to be installed as well as the latest technological advances in that field.
- If you want to build a smart home with the latest AI home automation, there are specialist subcontractors only to handle that aspect of the home renovation.
- HVAC subcontractors are experts in the design and placement of walls, ducts, soffits, and other components to ensure a home is properly heated, cooled, and ventilated. They are also the best to advise homeowners on the best HVAC systems for their homes.
- If a homeowner wants ripple-free and seamless carpeting on any surface, carpeting subcontractors are whom the general contractor will hire.
- The electrical wiring required for a home needs to be in line with the latest code updates, and an electrical contractor is the best person for the job.
- A home’s sewage, drainage, and water needs are best handled by a plumbing contractor.
- The installation of drywall and spackling requires specific skills that only drywall contractors possess.
- A home needs a strong foundation, and a foundation contractor is just the person to decide on the kind of materials a new home requires, based on the presence of columns, basements, design, and more.
- Brick and stone masonry is an important component of many interior and exterior home walls, which is again a very specific skill that only masonry contractors are adept at.
- Concrete specialists are the go-to people when a contractor wants to ensure the consistency, additives, and finish of the concrete being used is durable enough for the home being built.
- Irrespective of the kind of roofing homeowners choose, be it shingles, solar, asbestos, or any other type of material, a contractor will have to hire roofing contractors for the job.
- Depending on the type of countertops a homeowner wants for his/her kitchen or bathrooms, a skilled specialist will need to be hired.
- Professional flooring contractors are specialists in laying hardwood, engineered wood, and other types of home flooring.
- Laying ceramic floor tiles requires a completely different type of contractor.
- There are different contractors who are hired only to deal with painting, wall finishing, and applying textured treatments on walls.
- The wooden frames needed as a skeletal structure for the construction of the house are built by specific contractors. They also install the home’s subfloor.
- Specialist carpenters and cabinet makers are employed to custom make kitchen cabinets.
- The installation of exterior windows and doors to ensure the home is well insulated requires special contractors.
- Door hangers are experts at quickly installing internal doors in homes.
- All wood built-ins a home needs require specially finished carpentry.
- Siding experts ensure that siding is installed level and in a manner that prevents dampness and rainwater from entering the home.
- It takes the keen eye and expertise of a professional landscaper to keep in mind the immediate appearance needs of the outside of a home, and how planned landscaping will make it look in the future.