What Is a Full-Service General Contractor?

Are you looking to do an extensive remodel or ground up commercial build? If so, hiring a full-service general contractor could save you a lot of-of time, money, and stress.

A full-service general contractor can help from start to finish, providing professional insight to all parts of the building process, pre-construction and design, through post-construction and tenant services.

When do you need to hire a general contractor?

Hiring a full-service general contractor is crucial for the majority of large construction projects. This is especially true for any job that will take more than a week, requires several different sub-contractors to complete, or involves multiple permits. A full-service general contractor will have the knowledge, experience, and connections to help you navigate complex projects.

How to find a general contractor

The task of picking a general contractor for your construction project can seem daunting. One of the most important things to keep in mind during the initial part of your search is to make sure any contractor that you consider is properly licensed and insured for the location you are building or renovating in.

Once you have made a list of contractors that are licensed, insured, and are potentially good fits for your project, you will want to narrow down your options by asking questions.

  • Do they have a list of references you can contact?
  • Has the contractor successfully completed similar projects?
  • How long have they been in business?
  • Do they communicate well?
  • Do you feel comfortable working with them?

The bid portion of your project will provide you with ample time and information to decide whether or not they are an appropriate fit for your project.

Pre-Construction: Initial Meetings

full-service general contractorOnce you have chosen your full-service general contractor it’s time to move on to pre-construction.

The pre-construction phase of a renovation or new build is one of the most essential parts of the project and should be addressed with knowledge and care, as it sets the pace and foundation for any construction project.

The first part of the pre-construction process is to schedule a meeting between the client and general contractor, where both parties can get a sense of each other and begin to lay the groundwork for the future project. At this time, clients should clearly define their wants, needs, goals, and objectives, as well as address any big questions or issues they have. Once the client has provided the general contractor with their overall vision for the project, the contractor can determine whether or not the project is feasible, provide the client with a general idea of work required, and map out an approximate schedule.

After the initial meeting, the general contractor will move into the design phase. During this, they visit the construction site to analyze the space and assess any existing systems such as electrical, plumbing, and HVAC to determine whether updates will be needed. Digital design renderings of the project will be produced so clients can easily visualize the space and make sure all components fit and satisfy their vision. The general contractor will establish a preliminary construction budget during this stage, which will continue to be fine-tuned as further decisions are made.

Pre-Construction: Building a Project Team

Commercial construction projects, even just renovations, take a team to accomplish. General contractors are accountable for not only putting together the project team but also for making sure everyone stays on the same page and has clear and open lines of communication to help ensure the entire process goes smoothly.

It is the job of the general contractor to make sure their client is guided through the entire construction process. The general contractor should be consulting their client when making any big decisions, providing them with multiple options and recommendations that will be best for their budget and goals.

Clients should expect to come out of the pre-construction process with an overall scope of the project and how their goals will be achieved and an accurate schedule for their project. The pre-construction process can take anywhere from several weeks to several months and helps provide clients with realistic expectations.

Commercial new construction

All renovation and construction projects take serious planning and the right crew for success, however, when ommercial construction trendsyou are working from the ground up on a new build there is a multitude of additional things to think about.

When planning a new commercial construction project, it is paramount to find a general contractor who has had extensive experience with other ground-up commercial projects. Most commercial contractors are licensed specifically for these types of builds and have already established relationships with investors, architects, and other corporate clients, ensuring their ability to successfully create and build a commercial space from the ground up, within the timeline needed.

Ground-up commercial projects often have tighter deadlines and more restrictive code and zoning regulations, which requires general contractors to not just supervise but ensure that each job is done correctly while meeting the highest standards possible and staying in compliance with code and zoning regulations.

Renovations, tenant improvement, and tenant services

Tenant improvements can be anything from renovations of small spaces to a complete build-out for a new business location, including changes to the walls, floors, ceilings, lighting, etc. as part of a lease agreement for a commercial tenant.

In this type of renovation, a general contractor can help you understand the costs going in and the increased value and rental income coming out. They access existing features, efficiency procedures and more to design and plan updates that will fit the dream while also being durable, long lasting, commercial grade, and energy efficient.

Choosing to hire a full-service general contractor is beneficial during any major construction project. At CPM we have thirty years of quality contracting experience. With this experience, we have developed the skills to continuously exceed customers’ expectations, on both time management, building quality and overall project satisfaction. Contact us today to request a property assessment.


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