Escalation is a risky item right now, causing many headaches for project teams. Negotiating your contract terms upfront is more important than ever.

Find ways to protect yourself.

Ways to protect yourself:

1. Ask your General Contractor how they plan to handle escalation during construction. Have the hard conversations now to avoid surprises later, even if you do not like the answer.

2. Set specific buyout milestones and terms in your construction contract to help prevent the General Contractor from dropping the ball, subsequently making their mistake your problem. (Especially true for Allowance scopes).

3. Order early. Do not allow your project to fall victim to a lack of planning. We know everything from trusses to appliances have long lead times. The cost of storage containers and extra security can be far better than several months of delay.

4. Carry extra Owner’s contingency. No one wants to hear that, but increasing contingency from 5% to 7.5%-10% can be necessary protection. It is better to have it in your budget and not use it than to scramble during construction.

5. Get representation! Do not navigate the pre-construction and construction phases alone. Have an experienced advocate (Owner’s Rep) who can negotiate the right terms for you.

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