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Engaging builder - advice on contract please!

(4 Posts)
mika2 Mon 07-Mar-16 15:37:33

Hi,

We are starting a side return extension shortly on a Victorian terrace. The builder we have chosen (very good reputation locally) has sent us his contract setting out his terms and conditions and payment schedule.

There are some points which sound a bit dubious (but could be industry practice?) e.g. -
1. "any or all liability of [builder] under this agreement, whether in contract, tort or otherwise (but excluding any claims for personal injury) shall be limited to no more than the [value of the contract]?

Surely his maximum liability is the rebuild value of the house if he knocks it done or cost to make good any damage caused? How could it be capped at his quote?

2."If progress on or completion of the works is delayed beyond the completion date for any reason beyond the control of [builder] ... a reasonable payment amount will be negotiated between the parties in good faith to cover any additional costs and expenses that [builder] might incur." It goes on to say "[builder] will not be liable for any delays caused by the failure of any 3rd party to supply any goods or services necessary to carry out the works, whether the contract to supply is arranged by [builder] or owners".

The builder is arranging bi-fold doors, windows etc. so if the glazing company he contracts get delayed/have problems, we may have to compensate our builder??

3. "subject to [builder] being permitted full and uninterrupted access to [address] it shall complete the work on or before [date]. Time is however not of the essence."

Really? I will be living out of a suitcase with 2 small kids so time will be of the essence for me!

4. The payment schedule indicates that the final 7% will be paid on "completion of the works" which is 15 weeks after the start date.

They verbally indicated the work would take 10-12 weeks. Is this final payment for "snagging" or should we try to negotiate an additional amount for this - what should it be and how long after the work is completed should it be paid?

Thanks so much for reading this far. I am so frazzled and stressed these days and have definitely bitten off more than I can chew with this building project so any advice would be gratefully appreciated!

mika2 Mon 07-Mar-16 17:30:53

Anyone??

leoniethelioness Mon 07-Mar-16 21:18:32

You can negotiate the contract.

JCT sell a homeowners' contract which you could use instead or you could buy a copy to help you make sense of your builders' contract if you don't intend to take legal advice on it - www.jctltd.co.uk/category/home-owner-contracts

KleineDracheKokosnuss Mon 07-Mar-16 21:21:53

Use a jct contract and make sure there are damages specified for overruns.

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