1. Create a communication plan.
Before the seawall repair project even begins, you should meet with contractor and create a definitive plan detailing how you will stay abreast of changes and updates. Will you be checking in by phone? Do you plan on stopping by the jobsite in person? Will you be dealing exclusively with the contractor or should you expect to receive progress reports from another project leader or job foreman? Establishing the primary method(s) of communication and devising a schedule will help prevent confusion and ensure everyone is on the same page. These meetings will allow you to ask questions and voice any concerns as well as give your contractor the opportunity to address them and take proactive measures to prevent future issues.
2. Track changes in writing.
Although the project should be outlined in writing before any work commences, you should also continue documenting the progress as the job evolves. You may encounter unforeseen issues or elect to add to the services originally agreed upon. Your contractor should be able to adapt to these changes and willingly provide you with adjusted bids for the cost in writing. When an agreement is reached, both parties must sign the revised work order just as you did in the initial contract.
You may also want to consider keeping a “project journal” where you can document progress, make note of ideas and questions you want to ask your contractor, record product order numbers, and keep track of impending deliveries.
3. Be flexible . . . and have a little faith.
Even the best contractor encounters unexpected delays due to events like adverse weather conditions, shipping delays, or equipment breakdowns. If the work is interrupted as a result of forces that are clearly beyond your contractor’s control, try to be flexible about the situation and avoid making unrealistic demands. If you did your homework and hired a capable contractor as discussed in the previous post, they will do everything in their power to maintain the work flow and keep on schedule.
Gibson Marine Construction is a full-service professionally certified marine contractor with over 30 years of experience building seawalls, docks and installing boat lifts. For more information about seawall repair and other services, call (727) 942-3111.