Being a general contractor is sometimes a thankless job. You get to deal with homeowners, employees, other contractors, and a host of regulatory agencies. It seems that a headache is simply part of the job. However, there are some things that really get on contractor’s nerves. These pet peeves drive most general contractors nuts:
WISHY WASHY HOMEOWNERS
You love filling out those change order forms, right? Especially those that reduce the cost of your job. NOT! Wouldn’t it be nice if a homeowner knew what they wanted and stuck to the plan throughout the project? Wishy washy homeowners are at the top of every general contractor’s pet peeve list.
THE 20 QUESTIONS HOMEOWNER
This is the homeowner who micromanages your job site and your job. You know this type. They come in and see your project halfway done and then are upset that it doesn’t look the way they imagined it. Well, duh. The project isn’t finished yet. And you get to drop your tools to play 20 questions with a homeowner who thinks they know more than you do.
THE TOOL-MOVING CO-WORKER
When you work, you have a rhythm and there’s a reason you place your tools where you do. Until that tool-moving co-worker moves your tools without telling you, or worse, uses them and doesn’t put them back. It can mess up your entire day when you have to spend more time hunting for your tools than using them.
EMPLOYEES WHO DON’T FOLLOW SAFETY REGS
Ever heard of OSHA? When those guys fine you, it’s no joke. And when your employees don’t follow safety regs like wearing their hard hats when the inspector comes by, that’s a hard pill to swallow, especially if you just held a safety meeting on that subject. Those safety rules are in place to protect people, but they can’t protect you from being stupid.
It’s hard to keep a steady revenue stream to pay your crew, buy materials, and get licenses. So when a homeowner’s check bounces, it can make you see red. Bounced checks tend to bounce your checks, so this hurts your wallet in more ways than you can count.
THE EASY STREET GUY
We all have that one guy on our crew. The one who abandons the job that gets too hard, letting another crew member step in and take over. He’s the one who jumps up to volunteer the minute an easy job comes on deck. He wants to come in late and leave early and chit chat on his phone all day with his girlfriend. If it rains, he can’t work. If it’s too hot, he can’t work. If it’s just right, he might work. That guy.
INSPECTORS REQUIRING RE-INSPECTION FOR NO REASON
You know the drill. You go to the city ordinance office, get the exact list of what you need to pass the inspection, then the inspector comes out and fails you based off a different set of specs. The fee for another inspection has to come from your pocket. It feels like the government bureaucrats are simply padding their budget with their incompetence.
SHARE YOUR TOP PET PEEVES
We haven’t even scratched the surface of what bugs most general contractors, so share your top pet peeves here. Tell us what drives you nuts.
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