Construction Law

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Characteristics of Troublesome Construction Clients

In the construction business, you meet all kinds of clients. Most clients are easy to work with, and you can provide pleasing results; however, there are clients that you may not be able to work well with for one reason or another. These clients tend to have certain characteristics in common that you can use to spot them before you get too involved with the project. In this editorial, we’ll describe some of the most common characteristics of troublesome construction clients. If you notice any of these characteristics in your current clients, don’t hesitate to reach out to a construction litigation attorney from Clarksville, TN with Cotney Attorneys & Consultants.

Related: The Keys to Successful Client Relations in Construction

Never on Time

One of the earliest indicators of troublesome construction clients is that they are never on time. More specifically, the client is never punctual about making progress. This can appear in many ways, including clients that tried to start a project but disappear only to reappear after a long break. When this happens, the project is usually on a shortened deadline, and the client expects you to meet the deadline.

When you are approached by a client, pay attention to how they respond to working with you. If a client begins a project and disappears, does not seem interested, or does not appear to be committed to starting a new project, it can be assumed that the client will not be invested enough in the project to participate in a timely and effective manner.

Too Many Ideas

There is nothing wrong with clients having ideas about construction projects. In fact, you want your clients to be able to provide input and feedback during the process. However, clients that have too many ideas may prove to be difficult to work with. Having too many ideas means that there is not much commitment to a specific plan. This can make managing a construction project difficult, especially if there are many change requests throughout the project.

To spot clients with too many ideas, look at how they plan projects. If the plan seems unfocused and has a very large number of unspecific elements in it, it may mean that the client does not have a good understanding of what he or she wants to complete. Make sure that, before you begin any work, you have documentation stating what the plan is and a strong contract to make sure that you can stay within the plan.

Related: Signs of Problematic Clients and How to Handle Them

Problems Agreeing on Contracts

If you are having difficulty getting clients to agree to specific contract terms, this is a major red flag. For the most part, construction contracts are similar between projects. There are standard clauses included in every contract, and most of the changes with the contract have to do with the scope and timeline for the project. If a customer looks at a standard contract and refuses to stick with it or wants to make substantial changes to it outside of the scope or timeline of the project, be prepared to walk away from that client.

Clients that want to add clauses to a contract that would put you in a bad position may not be clients you want to work with. For example, adding a clause for delays that is unnecessarily strict or adding penalties for other potential problems can create issues for you down the line. If the client consistently tries to build a contract with you in a position where your company takes major and unnecessary risks, have a construction litigation attorney from Clarksville, TN, review the contract for you.

Troublesome clients can appear anywhere and cause serious problems for your company. Avoid these clients when you can, and bring in an attorney to help you deal with the clients that you can avoid. If you have any questions about construction contracts, contact a construction law firm in Clarksville, TN

If you would like to speak with a construction litigation attorney from Clarksville, TN, please contact us today.

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.